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Life Insurance for the Extreme Athlete

Where does an extreme sports participant go to find life insurance? The riskier the extreme sport, the more difficult it is to find affordable life insurance.

Individuals who engage in adrenaline rushing sports such as hang gliding, extreme cycling, mountain climbing and the like have a tougher time securing life insurance than their sedentary counterpart. To some, the problem isn’t so much the higher premium; it’s finding an insurance company willing to provide coverage.

Insurance Company Philosophy

It’s no secret that insurance companies like to write policies for risks that are unlikely to happen. The lower the risk, the lower the premium. Life insurance companies, however, insure risks that have a 100% chance of happening. Their goal is to find policyholders whose inevitable demise occurs in the distant future. They look to maximize the time between policy inception and the ultimate payout.

Life insurance companies take several rating factors into consideration when determining the premium. Factors such as whether or not a person smokes, medical history and lifestyle all contribute to raising or lowering insurance premium rates.

Extreme Sports Conundrum

While the an extreme sports participant may be an attractive risk in that she does not smoke, is healthy and has a illness free medical history, her lifestyle habits may raise a red flag. Jumping out of airplanes, paragliding, mountain climbing and other extreme sports are known in the industry as “hazardous avocations.” These hazardous avocations cause an insurance company to either raise their rates to compensate for the additional risk or cancel the coverage all together.

Where to Go for Insurance

Websites such as QuoteRack.com and Extreme Sport Life Insurance.com purportedly provide quotes for any type of insurance. Extreme sports participants using the Quote Rack application for Hazardous Pastimes Life Insurance, will have their information submitted to several insurance brokers specializing in providing insurance for individuals engaged in the risky pastimes.

Contact the Existing Life Insurance Company

Before engaging in the risky sport, contact the existing life insurance carrier. Discuss the ramifications of participating in the new sport. Some insurance companies will charge an additional surcharge to cover the risk (as indicated in the sample Avocations and Hazardous Sports sample rating sheet). Other companies may deny coverage and cancel the policy.

Approaching a Traditional Life Insurance Company

When applying for life insurance through a traditional company, be sure to tell the truth and divulge the fact that jumping out of airplanes or mountain climbing is a current pastime. In other words, don’t lie on a life insurance application. Lying on an application is grounds for voiding the policy.

Even though participating in extreme sports is considered risky behavior, do not feel obligated to take the first life insurance quote presented. Get at least two or three before making a decision.

About the author: Felicia A. Williams is a wife, mother, freelance writer and owner of Tidbits About Money.

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