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Apr 8, 20225 min

Life Insurance for People With Risky Jobs

The job you took as a professional paraglider looked good at the time, but then you decided to get life insurance, and that’s where things got sticky. It turns out there are a fair few professions that life insurance providers deem a risky job, and having one could lead to you being turned down for a policy. But which jobs are too hazardous for life insurance–or at least make it tricky to get coverage? We’ve got all the details below.

What happens if I have a risky job?

If you happen to enjoy a thrilling lifestyle at work, then getting life insurance can prove tricky. If there’s a higher risk of you dying due to your work, providers will be more cautious when providing coverage, as the chances of them paying out significantly increase. If you then times that by all of the dangerous professions out there, you’ve got yourself a ridiculously high level of payouts.

Getting a life insurance policy with a risky job isn’t impossible, though. Life insurance providers will take several factors into account, such as the likelihood of death based on industry statistics as well as your own risk individually.

It’s even possible that employees could have a group life insurance policy in place, as they are aware of the roadblocks faced for getting individual coverage. But even if you did go down the individual route, there are options (more on that in a bit). For now, let’s look at the jobs that insurers deem as threatening to your health.

Jobs are deemed hazardous by life insurance companies

Aircraft pilots

A pilot is a sought-after job that tends to pay handsomely and sees you flying all over the world. From a life insurance perspective, however, it’s deemed high risk because, well, you’re in the air while working–and when things tend to go wrong up there, they go really, really wrong. For that reason, being a pilot can be a risky job. Insurers also look at factors like your instrument rating, how many hours you fly annually, and the countries you fly to. So the level of risk isn’t exactly the same for every pilot.

Construction workers

From skilled tradespeople to those working on large sites, construction workers are often regarded as risky when it comes to life insurance. Accidents in construction-related jobs are higher than in many other professions, which means insurers cast a keen eye over anyone applying for a policy when they’re a manual laborer.


A natural resource worker is someone who is in mining, fishing (see above), marine, quarrying, oil and gas industries, and lumber. It’s all well and good working in a natural resource sector, but when you spend months on end on an oil rig or head down into the mines, attaining a life insurance policy can prove more tricky.

Natural resources workers

A natural resource worker is someone who is in mining, fishing (see above), marine, quarrying, oil and gas industries, and lumber. It’s all well and good working in a natural resource sector, but when you work on an oil rig for months out of the year or head down into the mines, attaining a life insurance policy can prove more tricky.

Active military

It doesn’t get any nobler than serving your country. Unfortunately, active military members usually don’t qualify for an individual life insurance policy as the risk is just deemed too high. There is good news, though, as military professionals are usually enrolled automatically into a government plan.

Car-related professions

Whether you’re a driving instructor, delivery driver, or have a profession that requires extensive time on the road, it might be harder to get life insurance. That’s because roads can be dangerous, and driving accidents are more common than, say, incidents sitting at your desk, switching between that excel file you promised to complete three hours ago and your NFL draft team. Driving accidents account for the most accidental deaths in the United States.

What life insurance options do I have with a risky job?

First of all, you shouldn’t rule out getting a traditional life insurance policy, such as term or permanent. Both of these are still attainable for some riskier professions (though the premiums are likely to be higher), and it really depends on your individual circumstance and the “riskiness” of your role. The final decision on whether to give you coverage ultimately comes down to each insurer, and they tend to differ for what they class as a dangerous job

It may be that you need to go through a more thorough medical exam and could be asked in-depth questions about your profession as well as the day-to-day of the job. Insurers could also perform a database report, which involves accessing information about medication you may be on or have previously taken. If the amount of coverage you want is high, you should expect a soft credit check.

You could find yourself subject to limited coverage options, too, and the size of the policy available may be capped even if monthly premium payments are higher. Sometimes it’s known as “impaired risk insurance” when you have a potentially hazardous job.

In conclusion: Life insurance for risky jobs

Obtaining life insurance can prove more difficult when you have a dangerous job, but it’s not impossible. You may even be offered it through your employer, which is better than having no coverage at all. And it’s always worth asking the question with the insurer to see if you can get an individual policy. You might be left pleasantly surprised and will be able to carry on your risky job while knowing you’re covered with a life insurance policy.

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