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Income protection insurance for footballers

No matter what code of football you play, it's a good idea to check out income protection.

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Lining up a kick on the field.

Aussies love their football whether it's rugby league, union, Aussie rules or soccer, our nation is obsessed.

However, football is not without its risks. In fact, AFL, Soccer and Rugby are the top three sports in Australia1 for sports-related injuries.

If you play footy on the weekends, have you ever wondered what would happen if you were unable to work due to an injury on the field? This is where income protection insurance can help. Income protection can provide you with up to 85% of your monthly salary should you be unable to work for an extended period of time.

Can I get covered if I play football?

  • Professional footballers: No, you won't be able to get cover if you are a professional sportsperson.
  • Amateur footballers: Yes, you can get covered in many cases. Insurers may apply a higher premium for footballers due to the higher risk of injury. Make sure you disclose the fact that you play with your insurer.

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Name Product Maximum Monthly Benefit Maximum % of Income Covered Maximum Benefit Period Waiting Period Options
AAMI Income Protection
$10,000
75%
5 years
14, 28, 60 or 90 days
Insuranceline Rate Saver Income Protection
$10,000
85%
5 years
14, 28, 60 or 90 days
Get a $100 bonus gift after 2 months. Plus get 12 months cover for the price of 11 if you pay annually. T&Cs apply.
NobleOak Income Protection
$25,000
75%
Up to 65
30 or 90 days
First month free for NobleOak Income Protection Insurance. T&Cs apply.
Medibank Standard Income Protection
$7,500
75%
5 years
30 or 90 days
Medibank health members save 10% every year. T&Cs apply.
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Can footballers get income protection insurance?

Since football is so popular in Australia, insurers typically still offer cover as long as you're not a professional player. However, it is still a risk factor which can affect your policy and may mean you're less likely to get cover. Factors including how frequently you play, at what level and your health may be factored into your premiums.

Do I need to disclose that I play football when I apply for income protection?

Yes. No matter what type of life insurance product you're applying for, it's part of your duty of disclosure.

How does playing football affect my premiums?

There are a number of ways that a footballers income protection policy may be adjusted to allow them to be provided with cover:

  • Premium loading. A premium loading is applied to income protection policies to reflect your increased risk of claiming. For example, if you're an amateur footballer an insurer might apply a 25% loading to your insurance premiums.
  • Adding sports cover. Some insurers offer you the option of adding additional personal accident cover for injuries sustained during sporting activities.

What's the benefit of income protection insurance for footballers?

Income protection insurance is designed to provide you with much-needed coverage when the unexpected happens. Income protection can:

  • Cover a large chunk of your monthly income. This is usually up to 75% (in some cases 85%) of your monthly salary
  • Provide ongoing monthly benefit payments. Having a steady stream of replacement income means you can keep paying your mortgage, repay other debts and manage day-to-day expenses.
  • Cover you for a benefit period you decide. You can generally choose a benefit that will stop after a set amount of years (normally 2 or 5 years) or one that continues to a specified age (normally 65 or 70).

What are my options if I am a semi-professional or professional football player?

While income protection cover is generally available for amateur footballers, the issue gets a little more difficult if you’re a semi-professional or professional player. For example, if you’re receiving small match payments for taking to the field, your insurer may reject your application for cover on the basis that you are playing at a more competitive level with higher risks.

Insurers will often offer or deny cover on a case-by-case basis. Speaking to a range of insurers and shopping around can help you find cover.

Professional players are generally excluded

Most mainstream insurers will not offer income protection cover to professional sports players of any kind. Generally, the salaries and the risk of injury are too high.

Check with your sporting association

If you’re a member of a sporting association, your team may have an insurance scheme in place. For example, you may have personal accident cover while on the field, or might be able to get cover through a partnered specialist insurer.

There are specialist insurers that can deliver a range of other covers for professional footballers. This form of insurance can be found by individuals, or through a sporting organisation.

Learn more about income cover for professional sports players

Does "complimentary interim" income protection cover football injuries?

What is complimentary interim income protection?

Most insurance providers will provide complimentary accidental injury cover for applicants while the insurer is processing their application.

Check with your policy for exclusions

It is not uncommon for insurers to have an extra set of exclusions applied to this cover for when a benefit will be paid. As an example, AIA will not provide a benefit for total disablement that has occurred within the interim period if it is a result of a football injury. It is crucial to be aware of these exclusions prior to taking out cover.

Is income protection tax deductible?

In Australia, premiums for income protection insurance policies outside of super are tax-deductible. Your policy needs to be shown to be linked to your ability to generate an assessable income, while your policy cannot be related to death or specific injuries.

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Definitions of football in Australia

In Australia, football can refer to:

  • Soccer
  • Rugby league
  • Rugby union
  • Australian rules football
  • Touch football
  • Oztag
  • American football
  • Flag football

How will my insurer define football?

Cover varies depending on the insurer. As a general rule of thumb, it's a good idea to disclose your lifestyle with your insurer including any sports you play and how often.

How risky is football?

Both rugby and soccer are some of the riskiest sports out there, outpacing almost any other sport in both the number of injuries and likelihood of being injured across all age groups.

The table below shows the number of injuries requiring hospitalisation in a 12-month period from 2011 to 2012, and the hospitalisation rate per 100,000 participants. Every year you play football, your chance being one of the people who suffers a serious injury increases.

Number of injuries requiring hospitalisationRate of hospitalisation per 100,000 participants
Soccer2,96217.0
Rugby (all codes)2,62115.0
Australian rules3,18618.2
Touch football6443.7

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Photo by Keith Johnston on Unsplash

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