Life Insurance for Extreme Sports

Dangerous activities can provide an unmatched thrill for those that take part, but can also make it difficult to obtain extreme sports life insurance. Life insurance for extreme sports is designed for those that would otherwise be denied this protection. It allows you to continue seeking your thrill without worrying about the future of your family.

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Rachael Brennan has been working in the insurance industry since 2006 when she began working as a licensed insurance representative for 21st Century Insurance, during which time she earned her Property and Casualty license in all 50 states. After several years she expanded her insurance expertise, earning her license in Health and AD&D insurance as well. She has worked for small health in...

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Benjamin Carr was a licensed insurance agent in Georgia and has two years' experience in life, health, property and casualty coverage. He has worked with State Farm and other risk management firms. He is also a strategic writer and editor with a background in branding, marketing, and quality assurance. He has been in military newsrooms — literally on the frontline of journalism.

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Reviewed by Benji Carr
Former Licensed Life Insurance Agent

UPDATED: Jan 13, 2021

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Quick Facts

  • Life insurance for extreme sports covers commonly-excluded activities.
  • Policies are available from some providers for up to $1 million.
  • Premiums depend on type and frequency of the activity.

Life insurance provides protection for a family should the head of the household pass away. A risky lifestyle could result in being denied life insurance by certain companies, but life insurance for extreme sports allows you to be protected.

While insurance providers might deny coverage for those that live a risky lifestyle, they understand the needs of those that take part in these activities. For this reason, they offer a separate coverage, ensuring high-risk individuals can remain covered.

Enter your ZIP code and compare life insurance for extreme sports in your area to find affordable quotes.

What is life insurance for extreme sports?

Life insurance providers determine whether an applicant can receive coverage based on their risk. If their lifestyle includes a high rate of mortality, the application might be denied. Dangerous sports can be considered too risky to cover under traditional coverage.

Providers understand that those living risky lifestyles need life insurance coverage. Life insurance for extreme sports is designed to cover those that might be denied traditional coverage, ensuring their families will be financially protected.

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How does life insurance for extreme sports work?

Since those seeking life insurance for extreme sports live a riskier lifestyle, their insurance premiums will be higher than others. The amount of those premiums will depend on various factors. These include:

  • The type of sport
  • Dangers associated with the sport
  • Frequency of participation in the sport
  • Level of experience
  • Type of equipment used

When applying for this type of insurance, you’ll be asked to provide a list of the activities you take part in. Failing to provide an accurate list could result in the cancellation of your coverage.

Once the insurance provider has the list of activities, they’ll assess the risk attached to each one. The danger involved with the activities could result in little change to your premiums, significant changes to your premiums, or rejection of coverage.

What activities are considered high risk?

Life insurance companies do their best to avoid paying out claims. For this reason, they tend to stay away from the riskiest of lifestyles. While some extreme sports might result in a small change to your premiums, others might result in a rejection of coverage.

Insurers typically pay special attention to:

  • Flying
  • Scuba diving
  • Motorsports
  • Parachuting
  • Canoeing
  • Kayaking
  • Hang gliding
  • Paragliding
  • Skydiving
  • BASE jumping
  • Mountain or rock climbing
  • Extreme biking
  • Skateboarding
  • Snowboarding
  • Skiing
  • Surfing

However, there are various activities that will be considered when purchasing life insurance for extreme sports.

Do you need life insurance for extreme sports?

Whether or not you need life insurance for extreme sports largely depends on if your preferred activity is generally covered. Some extreme sports are automatically covered while others might be excluded.

Extreme Sports Included and Excluded with Life Insurance
Included SportsExcluded Sports
Combative SportsMotorsports
Martial ArtsActivities at Heights
BicyclingWater Sports
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If your sport is excluded, you might still be able to receive coverage. Typically, this will include an additional premium due to the increased risk.

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Types of Life Insurance for Extreme Sports

There are two primary types of life insurance for extreme sports. Term life insurance will cover a person for a specified amount of time.

The beneficiaries will receive a payment if the person dies within that timespan. Whole life insurance covers the remainder of the person’s life. This type of insurance is more expensive as it covers a greater amount of time.

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How are life insurance for extreme sports rates determined?

Typically, insurers will use a risk classification system to determine life insurance rates. The classifications assigned to an individual are:

  • Preferred select
  • Preferred
  • Standard plus
  • Standard
  • Preferred smoker
  • Standard smoker

Those considered too risky to be placed in a classification will advance to a table rating system. This will determine the additional percentage they’ll pay on top of the premium. Extreme sports enthusiasts are often table rated.

How do you buy life insurance for extreme sports?

Finding life insurance for extreme sports quotes might seem like a daunting task. The risk can make it difficult to find an affordable rate. However, there are some things that you can do to make the process easier.

1. Talk with other extreme athletes

Most athletes will have friends who take part in the same sports. Some of them might already have life insurance. They can provide advice and recommendations on their experience with different policies.

2. Be honest about your activities

While your premiums might be higher for certain activities, you shouldn’t hide them from your insurer. If you suffer an accident while participating, your insurer won’t be responsible for a pay out.

3. Share how often you participate

It might seem like you’ll have higher rates if you take part in the activity frequently, but that’s not always the case. Insurers might see you as an expert, so you should be honest about your participation.

4. Shop around

Insurers will consider different aspects of your risk. While one company might consider your activity an extremely high risk, another might find you less so because of your experience. Make sure to shop around with different providers.

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What do you do if you’re denied life insurance for extreme sports?

Most people who take part in extreme sports will end up receiving coverage. However, some might be considered too risky. In this case, there are some alternate options.

Group Life Insurance

If your extreme sport is a part of your job, your employer will usually offer a group plan. The coverage will typically not be as good as an individual plan but will provide some protection.

Guaranteed Issue

A guaranteed issue plan doesn’t require a medical underwriting, allowing you to receive coverage. These plans tend to be more expensive but are an option for those considered too risky for other coverages.

Graded benefit whole life insurance

Most people prefer to avoid this option because the payout is gradual for the beneficiaries. The payments are usually complete over the first two years following the policyholder’s death.

What questions should you expect from life insurance for extreme sports?

When you apply for affordable life insurance for extreme sports, you’ll be asked a number of questions. These will usually start with general questions and advance to activity-specific questions.

General Questions

  • Do you plan on participating in activities involving heights?
  • Do you plan on participating in any full-body contact sports?
  • Do you plan on driving a motor car, motor bike, or motor boat racing?
  • Do you regularly take part in any other hazardous activities?

In-Depth Questions

  • What is your level of experience with the activity?
  • Do you hold any certifications or licensing?
  • Are you a member of any extreme sports clubs or associations?
  • Where and how frequently do you participate in the activity?
  • Are you involved in any competitions or record attempts?

Sport-Specific Questions

  • What engine size is used?
  • What are your diving depths?
  • How many jumps have you completed?
  • How many successful dives have you completed?

Frequently Asked Questions

#1 – Do insurers look at how often I participate in extreme sports?

Yes. The more often you participate in an extreme sport, the greater the risk that an accident could occur. This will often result in higher premiums or a rejection of coverage.

#2 – What if I don’t take part in the extreme sport anymore?

Insurers will look at the risk of a person’s lifestyle in the past, present, and future. However, the further back the risk took place, the less of a risk it is today. If a person took part in an extreme sport decades ago but no longer does, it will likely be overlooked.

#3 – What if I’m professionally licensed?

Professional licensing or certification will be considered when determining life insurance for extreme sports. This is because that person will be considered an expert so the risk of the activity is less than a less-experienced person.

#4 – How do I determine if I take part in an extreme sport?

Determining if a sport is extreme can be difficult. Surfing might not seem extreme if you only surf on small waves, but it can be extreme is you surf after a storm. Each activity listed will be looked at independently and determined based on frequency, duration, type, and skill set.

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Life Insurance for Extreme Sports: The Bottom Line

Certain sports are more dangerous and require special coverage. Life insurance for extreme sports is designed to cover activities that would generally be too risky for traditional coverage.

If you’re looking for life insurance for extreme sports, compare the rates of companies that offer this type of life insurance to find the one that best fits you.

Enter your ZIP code and compare life insurance for extreme sports in your area to find affordable quotes.

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