In most sports the risk of serious injury is, unfortunately, a very real possibility. In general, males are nearly twice as likely to suffer a sports injury, compared to females. Of these sports injuries, over 70% of males need hospitalization (2).
Whether you love rugby, football, AFL, or soccer, there’s no denying that Australians are sports mad! We even have a free-to-air tv station dedicated to sports news and broadcasting. As a nation, our participation in all kinds of sports is high, with nearly two-thirds of the Australian population (over 15 years) playing some type of sport (1).
Why you need income protection to cover sports injuries
If you are one of the many Australians who participates in a sport, you should consider what would happen to your lifestyle if you were injured. What would you do if you needed hospitalisation and extended time off work for recovery? Facts show that each year, approximately 1 million Australians experience serious injuries or illness, which either require hospitalisation or prevents them from working (3).
Workers’ Compensation does not cover injuries outside of work, and your sick leave may cover the first few weeks, but after that, it may be difficult to make ends meet. You may even have to start eating into your savings or other investments just to survive.
How Income Protection covers sports injuries
However, if you had income protection insurance, you could take comfort from the fact that you’d still be receiving a regular income, despite any sports injuries. Financial concerns would be the least of your worries.
Income Protection pays a fixed monthly payment (usually up to 75% of your income) if you are unable to work due to illness or injury – including sporting injuries. These payments can be used to meet everyday living expenses such as the mortgage and other household costs.
If you have debts that are serviced primarily from your salary, and if your family depends mainly on you for financial support, the importance of income protection insurance cannot be understated. Figures show that one in three people of working age will suffer an accident or illness that will keep them off work for more than three months! (4).
Case Study: The importance of being covered for sport’s injuries
Brian is 38 and earns $68,000 as a Sales Rep. Together with his wife Rebecca and their two children watching on the sidelines, Brian was enjoying a competitive game of football one afternoon.
While an accomplished footy player, Brian didn’t see the deadly tackle coming from two of his ten-foot-tall opponents, sending him backwards slamming into the ground. Brian soon realised something was wrong when a sharp pain came from his chest and lower back. The resulting combination of two broken ribs and a slipped disc meant Brian was not able to work for over five months.
Luckily Brian and Rebecca spoke to a financial adviser 12 months earlier who recommended the couple take out a comprehensive Income Protection Insurance policy. The money from their income protection insurance policy helped Brian and Rebecca pay their bills while Brian was injured; like their mortgage, credit card bills, and the kids’ school fees.
1 ABS – 4177.0, 2006
2 Hospitalised sports injury Australia, Flinders University & AIHW, 2002-03
3 ABS – 4364.0, 2006
4 Institute of Actuaries of Australia 1994
If you need money to cover your expenses during extended leave from work due to a sports injury, you can bridge the gap with Income Protection Insurance.