Life Insurance for Australian Expats

Can Australian expats living overseas take out life insurance with an Australian insurer?

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It's possible for Australian expatriates living overseas to take out life cover with an Australian insurance provider. However, there are some important restrictions to be aware of, including:

  • Official government warnings for overseas country. Most insurers will not provide cover for expats in countries with a level 5 classification from the Department of Foreign Affairs and Training (DFAT).
  • Maximum length of time overseas. Policies will state a maximum length of time of 5 years for Australian expats overseas.

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Does life insurance cover deaths that occur overseas or abroad?

Whether or not an Insurance Provider will offer cover and on what terms is often dependent on the country that they are or intend to reside in. Most life insurers will work through reports from the Department of Foreign Affairs when determining risk levels of countries and in most cases will not insure expatriates in high risk countries (DFAT 5). Warnings on DFAT for countries range from “Exercise Normal Safety Precautions” to “Reconsider Your Need to Travel”. Reasons for countries being considered dangerous can include;

  • Terrorist threats
  • High rates of kidnapping
  • Political unrest
  • Serious crime
  • Military conflict
  • Disease

Insurers will generally consider each country on a case-by-case basis. In some instances, insurers may place exclusions on the policy depending on the country. For example, the application of a political instability clause is common for many policies. The country travelled to may also impact the length of time that an insurer is willing to provide cover for.

Issue DateDestinationOverall level
29 January 2020Hong KongExercise a high degree of caution
28 January 2020ChinaReconsider your need to travel
27 January 2020SamoaExercise normal safety precautions
26 January 2020TaiwanExercise normal safety precautions
25 January 2020MacauExercise normal safety precautions
25 January 2020ParaguayExercise a high degree of caution
25 January 2020ArgentinaExercise normal safety precautions
24 January 2020SingaporeExercise normal safety precautions
22 January 2020KuwaitExercise a high degree of caution
22 January 2020Saudi ArabiaReconsider your need to travel
22 January 2020EgyptReconsider your need to travel
22 January 2020QatarExercise normal safety precautions
22 January 2020OmanExercise normal safety precautions
22 January 2020TurkeyExercise a high degree of caution
22 January 2020AfghanistanDo not travel
22 January 2020JordanExercise a high degree of caution
22 January 2020BahrainExercise a high degree of caution
22 January 2020LebanonExercise a high degree of caution
22 January 2020Israel and the Palestinian TerritoriesExercise a high degree of caution
22 January 2020United Arab EmiratesExercise normal safety precautions
22 January 2020SyriaDo not travel
22 January 2020YemenDo not travel
20 January 2020FijiExercise normal safety precautions
19 January 2020TongaExercise normal safety precautions
16 January 2020MalawiExercise normal safety precautions
15 January 2020SwedenExercise normal safety precautions
15 January 2020Trinidad and TobagoExercise a high degree of caution
14 January 2020PhilippinesExercise a high degree of caution
13 January 2020KenyaExercise a high degree of caution
12 January 2020IranReconsider your need to travel
9 January 2020United States of AmericaExercise normal safety precautions
7 January 2020IndonesiaExercise a high degree of caution
7 January 2020FranceExercise a high degree of caution
5 January 2020IraqDo not travel
3 January 2020Solomon IslandsExercise normal safety precautions
3 January 2020JapanExercise normal safety precautions
3 January 2020CameroonExercise a high degree of caution
24 December 2019AlgeriaReconsider your need to travel
24 December 2019ChileExercise a high degree of caution
23 December 2019PalauExercise normal safety precautions
23 December 2019Cook IslandsExercise normal safety precautions
20 December 2019The GambiaExercise a high degree of caution
20 December 2019BelgiumExercise a high degree of caution
18 December 2019New ZealandExercise normal safety precautions
18 December 2019Federated States of MicronesiaExercise normal safety precautions
17 December 2019Papua New GuineaExercise a high degree of caution
17 December 2019Marshall IslandsExercise normal safety precautions
17 December 2019IndiaExercise a high degree of caution
11 December 2019NetherlandsExercise normal safety precautions
9 December 2019NepalExercise a high degree of caution
6 December 2019MyanmarExercise a high degree of caution
5 December 2019MozambiqueExercise a high degree of caution
5 December 2019BoliviaExercise a high degree of caution
28 November 2019BotswanaExercise normal safety precautions
26 November 2019PakistanReconsider your need to travel
25 November 2019ColombiaExercise a high degree of caution
22 November 2019BangladeshExercise a high degree of caution
20 November 2019Sri LankaExercise a high degree of caution
18 November 2019Burkina FasoReconsider your need to travel
15 November 2019South AfricaExercise a high degree of caution
14 November 2019SpainExercise normal safety precautions
13 November 2019EthiopiaExercise a high degree of caution
13 November 2019DjiboutiExercise a high degree of caution
12 November 2019South Korea (Republic of Korea)Exercise normal safety precautions
11 November 2019MadagascarExercise a high degree of caution
11 November 2019ZimbabweExercise a high degree of caution
10 November 2019TanzaniaExercise a high degree of caution
10 November 2019Central African RepublicDo not travel
8 November 2019MaldivesExercise normal safety precautions
8 November 2019EritreaReconsider your need to travel
8 November 2019ZambiaExercise normal safety precautions
8 November 2019BurundiDo not travel
8 November 2019EcuadorExercise a high degree of caution
8 November 2019SomaliaDo not travel
7 November 2019SeychellesExercise normal safety precautions
7 November 2019South SudanDo not travel
7 November 2019MauritiusExercise normal safety precautions
7 November 2019LesothoExercise a high degree of caution
7 November 2019VenezuelaDo not travel
7 November 2019NamibiaExercise normal safety precautions
6 November 2019UgandaExercise a high degree of caution
6 November 2019RwandaExercise a high degree of caution
6 November 2019Brunei DarussalamExercise normal safety precautions
5 November 2019UruguayExercise normal safety precautions
5 November 2019UzbekistanExercise a high degree of caution
5 November 2019VietnamExercise normal safety precautions
5 November 2019EswatiniExercise normal safety precautions
5 November 2019North Korea (Democratic People's Republic of Korea)Reconsider your need to travel
5 November 2019ThailandExercise a high degree of caution
5 November 2019LaosExercise normal safety precautions
5 November 2019MalaysiaExercise normal safety precautions
5 November 2019TajikistanExercise a high degree of caution
4 November 2019CyprusExercise normal safety precautions
4 November 2019PortugalExercise normal safety precautions
4 November 2019RussiaExercise a high degree of caution
4 November 2019CanadaExercise normal safety precautions
4 November 2019Timor-LesteExercise a high degree of caution
4 November 2019SwitzerlandExercise normal safety precautions
4 November 2019TunisiaExercise a high degree of caution
4 November 2019BelizeExercise a high degree of caution
4 November 2019LibyaDo not travel
4 November 2019MauritaniaReconsider your need to travel
4 November 2019IrelandExercise normal safety precautions
4 November 2019LatviaExercise normal safety precautions
4 November 2019FinlandExercise normal safety precautions
4 November 2019El SalvadorExercise a high degree of caution
4 November 2019CambodiaExercise normal safety precautions
4 November 2019CubaExercise normal safety precautions
4 November 2019NicaraguaExercise a high degree of caution
4 November 2019Democratic Republic of the CongoReconsider your need to travel
4 November 2019ChadDo not travel
4 November 2019PanamaExercise a high degree of caution
4 November 2019EstoniaExercise normal safety precautions
4 November 2019MoroccoExercise a high degree of caution
4 November 2019HondurasExercise a high degree of caution
4 November 2019NorwayExercise normal safety precautions
4 November 2019BrazilExercise a high degree of caution
4 November 2019PeruExercise a high degree of caution
3 November 2019SudanReconsider your need to travel
3 November 2019MongoliaExercise normal safety precautions
3 November 2019ItalyExercise normal safety precautions
3 November 2019KazakhstanExercise normal safety precautions
3 November 2019MoldovaExercise normal safety precautions
1 November 2019Dominican RepublicExercise a high degree of caution
1 November 2019JamaicaExercise a high degree of caution
1 November 2019GuatemalaExercise a high degree of caution
1 November 2019Costa RicaExercise a high degree of caution
1 November 2019MexicoExercise a high degree of caution
1 November 2019Czech RepublicExercise normal safety precautions
1 November 2019BhutanExercise normal safety precautions
1 November 2019GabonExercise a high degree of caution
1 November 2019GermanyExercise normal safety precautions
1 November 2019GuineaExercise a high degree of caution
1 November 2019HaitiReconsider your need to travel
1 November 2019AngolaExercise a high degree of caution
1 November 2019PolandExercise normal safety precautions
1 November 2019LithuaniaExercise normal safety precautions
1 November 2019The BahamasExercise a high degree of caution
31 October 2019Sierra LeoneExercise a high degree of caution
31 October 2019MaliDo not travel
31 October 2019Côte d'Ivoire (Ivory Coast)Exercise a high degree of caution
31 October 2019LiberiaExercise a high degree of caution
31 October 2019GhanaExercise normal safety precautions
31 October 2019SenegalExercise a high degree of caution
31 October 2019MaltaExercise normal safety precautions
31 October 2019CroatiaExercise normal safety precautions
29 October 2019DenmarkExercise normal safety precautions
29 October 2019French PolynesiaExercise normal safety precautions
29 October 2019SerbiaExercise normal safety precautions
29 October 2019IcelandExercise normal safety precautions
29 October 2019NigeriaReconsider your need to travel
29 October 2019MontenegroExercise normal safety precautions
29 October 2019North MacedoniaExercise a high degree of caution
29 October 2019New CaledoniaExercise normal safety precautions
29 October 2019NigerDo not travel
28 October 2019AzerbaijanExercise normal safety precautions
28 October 2019GeorgiaExercise normal safety precautions
28 October 2019Bosnia and HerzegovinaExercise normal safety precautions
28 October 2019BulgariaExercise normal safety precautions
28 October 2019VanuatuExercise normal safety precautions
28 October 2019GreeceExercise normal safety precautions
28 October 2019The Republic of SloveniaExercise normal safety precautions
28 October 2019AustriaExercise normal safety precautions
28 October 2019RomaniaExercise normal safety precautions
28 October 2019The Slovak RepublicExercise normal safety precautions
28 October 2019GuamExercise normal safety precautions
28 October 2019HungaryExercise normal safety precautions
28 October 2019KosovoExercise a high degree of caution
18 October 2019ArmeniaExercise normal safety precautions
18 October 2019UkraineExercise a high degree of caution
18 October 2019TurkmenistanExercise normal safety precautions
17 October 2019BelarusExercise normal safety precautions
17 October 2019AlbaniaExercise normal safety precautions
17 October 2019United KingdomExercise normal safety precautions
17 October 2019Kyrgyz RepublicExercise a high degree of caution
16 October 2019BeninExercise a high degree of caution
1 August 2019GuyanaExercise a high degree of caution
1 January 1970No travel advice


Who is recognised as an expat?

An expat is recognised as an Australian Permanent Resident or one with Citizenship status who intends to live and work overseas for an extended period time but expects to return to Australian is the foreseeable future.

There is usually a restriction on the duration of time that the applicant can stay in the country for the policy to remain in force. Most insurers will only provide cover for up to five years. In the event that the policyholder has no intention to return to permanently live in Australia, an insurer will generally recommend that they seek cover options available in their new country of residence.


Is it possible for expats already residing overseas to take out cover?

For Australians who are already living and working overseas, there are a number of factors that will impact whether or not they can take out cover with an Australian provider. This include:

  • Duration of time already spent overseas. Insurers will examine the period of time that the applicant has already spent in the country and how much longer they intend to stay there. As mentioned previously, some insurers will recommend they look to taking out cover from a provider in that country.
  • Occupation. An insurer will consider the nature of the person’s occupation while overseas in their assessment on whether or not to provide cover. Occupations that may be considered to carry an extra level of risk (especially in the country being applied for) may carry an extra premium loading or be rejected altogether.
  • Legal Requirements of Country. The country may have certain legislation in place that will prevent the foreign workers to purchase a life insurance policy from within their country due to licensing issues.

Other forms of life insurance for Australian expats


Who is eligible to take out expatriate life insurance cover?

Some general requirements for expats looking to take out protective cover include;

  • Applicant must be an Australian citizen or have permanent residency.
  • Applicant must have plans to return to Australian after a period of 5 years. Applicants that decide to stay overseas may be required to take out a policy in their country of residence.
  • Any additional medical examination that is required during the underwriting process must be carried out in Australia by an approved medical practitioner.

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4 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    RayAugust 21, 2018

    I am an Australian citizen currently working in Kuwait on a residential visa, can I get life insurance for myself and wife?

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JhezAugust 24, 2018Staff

      Hello Ray,

      Thank you for your comment.

      Yes, it’s possible for you to obtain life insurance in Australia, but you may be subject to different application requirements. Life insurers will want to confirm the following about your personal situation:

      – Confirmation of your Australian citizenship
      – That your employment overseas (or living arrangement) is for a set period of time
      – The set period of time is generally no more than 5 years, and there is a clear date for your return to Australia

      We encourage you to use the quote engine above and fill out the form with your details, click the Get Quotes button and compare different quotes that offer life insurance for Australian expats.

      Please make sure to read the eligibility criteria, features and details of the policy, as well as the relevant Product Disclosure Statement PDS/T&C’s of the policy before making a decision and consider whether the product is right for you. If necessary, speak to the insurance brand to verify any details.

      Should you wish to have real-time answers to your questions, try our chat box on the lower right corner of our page.

      Regards,
      Jhezelyn

  2. Default Gravatar
    PhilSeptember 7, 2017

    My wife and I will be living in China for 3 years, working for an established international school. What options are available for life insurance for us both?

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      MaySeptember 7, 2017Staff

      Hi Phil,

      Thank you for your inquiry.

      If you’re going to enter your details into the panel above and click on the green “Get quotes” button, you’d be able to know the different brands that offer life insurance for Australian expats. Best that once you get the list and quotes, you’d contact the insurer directly to discuss your options. The article above also provides information about some important restrictions that you should be aware of when taking life insurance while living overseas.

      Hope this helps.

      Cheers,
      May

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