Pilots Income Protection

Helping you protect all the things you work hard for...

Drewberry™ provide pensions, investment and insurance advice for Money to the Masses readers throughout the UK.

 

Why Pilots Income Protection?

 

Income Protection provides you with a tax-free monthly income you can rely on should an accident or illness prevent your from flying.

 

Benefits are designed to cover your essential financial commitments, such as your mortgage, utility bills, and food.

 

Many pilots turn to Income Protection for a more comprehensive way of protecting their income than Loss of Licence insurance can offer.

 

“Income Protection is the one protection policy every working adult should consider.” Which? Money

What is it for?
 

What Does Income Protection Cover?

When the ‘Own Occupation’ definition of incapacity is used, Income Protection can pay out for any medical condition that prevents you from working in your own specific job as a Pilot.

As the policy coverage is not limited to a set list of conditions and with many insurers not having any standard exclusions, Pilots Income Protection is considered the most comprehensive form of accident and sickness protection available.

Given the additional risk there are only a few insurers in the UK willing to cover Pilots on an own occupation basis.

Being a pilot you are considered to be in a high-risk occupation, this is because there are so many things that medically could prevent you from doing your job when compared to an office worker. Anything from a simple ear infection to something more serious, such as losing your sight in one eye.

What does it cover?
 

How Does Income Protection Work?

Stage 1:
You stop working due to any injury or illness which prevents you from doing your job as a Pilot.

Stage 2:
You make a claim with the your insurer, which may require completing a claims form and providing documents serving as evidence of your health condition, such as a note from your GP.

Stage 3:
The insurer will start to pay a monthly tax free benefit after you have been unable to work for the length of your deferred period.

Stage 4:
The policy pays out until either you return to work or reach the maximum payout length, which could range from one year to retirement.

How does it work?
 

What About Pilots Loss of Licence Cover?

Loss of Licence Cover pays out should your licence be suspended or revoked. This could be for any medical reason.

However, a condition has to be fairly severe for you to lose your licence, for example a stroke which leaves your paralysed. Other medical conditions that could keep you off work long-term may not be serious enough to have your licence revoked.

Mental health problems and back pain are the two most common claims on Income Protection policies. Both have the potential to keep you off work long-term, but may not be serious enough to warrant your licence being suspended or revoked.

Limitations of Loss of Licence Cover…

If there’s a chance you might recover, say from something such as meningitis, your licence might not be revoked even if it takes you a long time to recover and so you wouldn’t receive a payout from Loss of Licence Cover despite you not being able to work for an extended period of time.

As a result of these limitations many Pilots are turning to Income Protection to ensure their earnings are suitably protected.

Loss of Licence Cover?
 

Your Key Options

Choose your level of cover

Depending on the insurer, it is possible to cover anywhere from 50% to 70% of your gross (pre-tax) income. Some insurers impose a maximum monthly figure you can insure, which may be lower than your pre-incapacity earnings.

Choose your deferred period

This is the length of time you would need to be off work before the policy kicks in and starts paying out. The longer the deferred period the cheaper your policy, so it makes sense to align it with your airline’s sick pay policy.

Choose your payout length

Short-term plans can payout for a maximum of 12 or 24 months and long-term plans can continue paying out either until you are well enough to return to work or you reach the end of the policy life, which is usually set in-line with your expected retirement age.

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This Guide…

Andrew Jenkinson - Drewberry
Written by:
Michael Englefield
Content Manager at Drewberry
 

What is Income Protection for Pilots?

Income Protection for Pilots is designed to provide you with a replacement income should you be unable to undertake your duties as a Pilot due to accident or sickness.

If you can’t work due to accident or sickness, Income Protection is there to kick in after your chosen deferred period to pay out a monthly income as long as you need it.

It is designed to support you through your illness until you either recover or, if you can never work again, until you retire.

Given the sheer number of medical conditions that could prevent a Pilot from flying that wouldn’t prevent an office or even a manual worker from doing their job there are only a few insurers who are able to offer own occupation income protection for Pilots.

Income Protection or Loss of Licence?

Income Protection is considered to offer a greater level of protection than Loss of Licence Cover as it provides insurance against anything that medically prevents you from working, rather than just things that cause your licence to be suspended or revoked.

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Do Pilots Need Income Protection Insurance?

As a pilot, it’s essential you’re fit and well to undertake your usual job role. It’s likely you’ll have regular physicals to sign off your fitness to fly. That means you’ll be aware of all the illnesses or injuries that could occur that might prevent you from working.

Victoria Slade Independent Protection Expert at Drewberry

There are so many things that could stop a pilot working that wouldn’t be covered by Loss of Licence Insurance because they’re not serious enough to warrant your licence being suspended or revoked but nonetheless could keep you off work for some time.

Many of my clients who are Pilots take out Income Protection to ensure their earnings are protected if they are unable to undertake their flying duties due to incapacity.

Victoria Slade
Independent Protection Expert at Drewberry

 

Risks of Accident or Sickness…

If any of these conditions cause you to need time of work, Income Protection can kick in to cover your wages while you can’t earn.

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how does pilots sickness insurance work?

How Does Income Protection for Pilots Work?

If you can’t fly as a pilot and perform the normal duties of your occupation due to accident or sickness, you would make a claim against your Pilots Income Protection Insurance policy.

The first step is to contact the claims team of your Income Protection provider and provide them with a completed claims form and medical evidence to support your claim. This will either be by post or online, although many providers are increasingly accepting at least preliminary claims over the telephone.

Once your claim has been accepted, you will need to wait out your deferred period, which is the length of time during which you will need to be out of work in order to begin receiving your benefits.

After this time, your policy will start to provide you with a regular monthly income to a specified level. This normally stands at 50% to 70% of your gross earnings, sometimes up to a set monthly limit.

Egle Blusiute Independent Protection Expert at Drewberry

Short-term Pilots Income Protection will pay out for a maximum of 1 or 2 years per claim, which may not be long enough.

Long-term policies, on the other hand, can pay out right up until your retirement. If it is within budget this tends to be the preferred option as the average claim length for one of the top providers, Aviva, was 4 years 33 weeks in 2017.

Egle Blusiute
Independent Protection Expert at Drewberry

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loss of licence insurance or income protection insurance

Loss of Licence Cover vs Income Protection

For more information about the difference between the two forms of cover you can read our expert guide on loss of licence insurance vs income protection.

 

Loss of Licence Cover

  • Pays out one cash lump sum or a monthly income for up to 5 years – however, this may not stretch over the long term if you were off work indefinitely
  • Pays out in the event your licence is suspended or revoked due to illness or injury
  • Your licence must be suspended or revoked – it might not be for a more minor illness / injury
  • Many Loss of Licence policies cease at the age of 55
 

Income Protection

  • Pays out a regular income each month representing a proportion of your salary, potentially right up until retirement. This would cover you long-term if you couldn’t work
  • Pays out for anything that medically prevents you working
  • You don’t have to have your licence suspended or revoked to make a claim
  • Income Protection can last right up until your airline’s retirement age

Oliver did an excellent job in making the right recommendations. He's been very patient in dealing with my request and helping me choose the right product. Well done and thanks very much!

Jayant Rampuria
06/10/2018
key policy options with income protection

Pilots Income Protection Policy Options

When taking out Income Protection for pilots, you will have a range of options to choose from that will allow you to tailor your cover to suit your specific needs.

How Much Income Insurance Do You Need?

Length of Claims Period

Choosing your Deferred Period

Do you want your income protection benefits to be linked to inflation?

Particularly with the longer term policies, linking your Income Protection benefits to inflation may be worth considering to ensure they hold their value over time. However, you should note that even with guaranteed premiums, your premiums will increase with inflation as well to take into account your increasing benefit.

However, this will ensure that the purchasing power of your Income Protection policy isn’t eroded over time if you are forced to claim for several years due to ill health.

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Getting Own Occupation Income Protection

Insurers use different definitions of incapacity to determine whether or not you are entitled to your Income Protection benefits – as a pilot, you need to be particularly aware of this.

 

Own Occupation

This is the best definition available and should be the one that you look out for when applying for your policy. Having this definition of incapacity applied to your policy means that as long as you are unable to perform your duties in your specific occupation, you can be defined as ‘incapacitated’ and are entitled to make a claim.

samantha haffenden-angear, independent protection expert at drewberry

Own occupation income protection is highly beneficial for pilots and is the only definition of incapacity we recommend.

Many insurers will cover pilots but only on a suited occupation basis (see below), which means you could be forced to take on a lesser job role that you’re suited to if you can’t work as a pilot. This might include operating a flight simulator, for example.

Samantha Haffenden-Angear
Independent Protection Expert at Drewberry

Given that there are so many illnesses or injuries that could prevent you from working in your specific job as a pilot compared to a desk-based role, it makes sense to get the own occupation definition of incapacity on your policy.

 

Suited Occupation

This definition doesn’t provide as much cover as ‘own occupation’. With this definition, you would be able to claim and continue claiming as long as you are incapable of performing typical duties in your occupation as well as in occupations that you are suitably qualified for.

This can cause issues as it may be the case that your insurer will refuse to pay out if they believe that you are capable of returning to work, even if you only capable of taking on a lower paying job role rather than returning to your pre-incapacity occupation as a pilot.

Sam Barr-Worsfold Independent Protection Expert at Drewberry

With the suited occupation definition of incapacity, you may not be able to fly. However, the insurer could say you could work on the ground, in the control tower or even a flight simulator and so would potentially turn down your claim.

Naturally this is very subjective and can make it difficult to achieve a successful claim.

Sam Barr-Worsfold
Independent Protection Expert at Drewberry

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Occupation Definition Calculator

Make sure your Income Protection covers you in your 'Own Occupation'!

Too often individuals take out income protection without being fully aware of the incapacity definition on which their plan would pay out.

Will the plan pay out if I am unable to do my current job role? Or will it only pay out if I am unable to do any occupation?

robertharveyportraitround

If you do not already have income protection this tool should provide you with guidance as to what to look out for and to ensure you do not fall foul of a lesser occupation definition.

Robert Harvey
Independent Protection Expert at Drewberry Insurance

Your Occupation
 
Manual Work (%)
Business Mileage
  annual mileage  
Overseas Travel
  trips per year
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best pilots income protection insurance UK

Compare Best Income Protection Insurers for Pilots

There are only four insurers in the marketplace which offer Pilots Income Protection with an own occupation. incapacity definition.

british friendly society

British Friendly

British Friendly will cover pilots up to the age of 60 on an own occupation basis with age-banded premiums.

  • Maximum benefit: 70% of gross income up to £45,000 per year
  • Deferred period for pilots:Day 1 or 1 / 4 / 8 / 13 / 26 / 52 weeks
holloway friendly

Holloway Friendly

Holloway Friendly will only cover pilots up to the age of 55 with a minimum 26 week deferral period.

  • Maximum benefit: 60% of gross income up to £100,000 per year
  • Deferred period for pilots: 26 / 52 weeks
liverpool victoria

Liverpool Victoria

Liverpool Victoria will cover pilots on an own occupation basis but considers them as a ‘category 4’ occupation. That means its guaranteed premiums are typically the most expensive in the market by some margin.

  • Maximum benefit: 60% of gross income up to £12,500 per month
  • Deferred period for pilots: 1 month / 2 months / 3 months / 6 months / 12 months
shepherds friendly

Shepherds Friendly

Like Holloway Friendly, Shepherds Friendly will only cover pilots with a 6 month deferral period and up to the age of 55.

  • Maximum benefit: 70% of gross income
  • Deferred period for pilots: 26 / 52 weeks

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get epert advice on income insurance for pilots

Get Expert Pilots Income Protection Advice

Robert Harvey, Independent Protection Expert at Drewberry

Income Protection for pilots is one area where it really pays to get advice because it’s quite a niche market, with not all insurers willing to offer cover.

We deal with lots of Pilots and are are well-placed to guide you through getting the best cover for your circumstances. Please don’t hesitate to pop us a call on 02084327333.

Robert Harvey
Independent Protection Expert at Drewberry

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Compare Top 10 UK
 Protection
Insurers
 
Takes approx. 60 seconds
Type of Policy
Income Required
per
month
Date of Birth
Loading your options...
Thank you for using our Quote Tool
If you need some help, just call us!
T: 02084327333
Our in-house Experts are here to provide FREE impartial advice!
Our Experts can answer all your questions
Our Experts can send you more appropriate options based on your personal circumstances

Very important if you are either Self-Employed or a Company Director.

Our online quote tool is good but our Experts are better

Oue Experts have access to far more insurers and can often find a better deal offline.

Saves you time, let our Experts do what they are best at

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