Truck driving in the U.S is increasingly becoming one of the most lucrative and rewarding careers, especially with the increasing demand for truckers due to growth in e-commerce. However, it also has its downsides.
For example, it is considered a risky career since truck drivers have to be on the road most of the time. They get tired, and a combination of those factors means that they are at a significantly higher probability of being involved in an accident.
It is thus important for truck drivers to have proper insurance coverage just to be on the safe side.
Life insurance is one of the types of insurance coverage that you should consider as a truck driver, but you might be wondering how that will work considering the highly risky nature of your occupation. Fortunately, insurance providers have identified the need to focus on the particular segment and the availability of multiple insurance coverage options that truck drivers can choose from. Keep in mind, the tips below are for any long-distance drive, whether you’re in food transport, or long distance relocations, this will be relevant to you.
Types of life insurance coverage for truck drivers
There are two types of life insurance coverage available for truck drivers.
Insurance companies usually provide term life insurance coverage to truck drivers for a fixed duration of time until the cover expires. The duration of coverage may range from 5 years to 30 years, depending on your preference. The length of coverage determines the size of the insurance premium that you will be required to pay. Your financial ability will likely determine the premium that you can comfortably pay, and it will thus influence the length of coverage.
Some insurance companies allow truck drivers to apply for life insurance coverage without necessarily going through a medical exam. This eliminates the need for a physical visit to the insurer. This means that truck drivers can apply for life insurance coverage online, which only takes a few minutes before returning to their busy schedules.
Guaranteed issue is one of the advantages to this approach. The idea here is that if you are healthy enough to work as a truck driver, you will be healthy enough to be provided with life insurance coverage.
This is another advantage to the fact no-exam option. A simple process is ideal for truckers because they can easily understand what the insurer is offering, quickly subscribe, and be on their way.
Permanent life insurance
Remember that term life insurance covers a person for a specified term or duration of time before it expires. Permanent life insurance is different in the sense that it does not have an expiry. It is a type of insurance coverage that is provided throughout the applicant’s lifetime. The first obvious advantage of permanent life insurance is that it provides insurance coverage for as long as you are alive as long as you keep paying the insurance premiums. Your family will be compensated in case of your demise, and this type of coverage also provides some savings benefits. You earn interest, and you can also take out a loan on your policy.
Guaranteed Universal Life
This is a type of permanent life insurance designed to provide a balance between lifetime coverage and affordability. It is best suited for individuals that want death benefit protection without the extras provided by other types of life insurance coverage products. For example, Guaranteed universal life coverage does not provide cash value. Some of the benefits that it offers include potential premium return, lower death benefits if need be, the benefits to be released to your kin after death are guaranteed, and most importantly, it provides affordable coverage.
Whole life or universal life
these are two different options found under permanent life insurance coverage. Both have an insurance aspect, and an investment aspect is designed to make them more attractive for a customer that is looking for life insurance with some added benefits. Unfortunately, this combination also means they attract higher premiums. Whole life and universal life insurance have notable differences. For example, universal life provides the applicant with flexibility regarding the savings aspect, death benefits, and premium payments. Meanwhile, whole life insurance offers guaranteed cash value and fixed premiums.
Why getting life insurance can be hard for truck drivers
Getting life insurance for a person in a normal occupation might be easy and hassle-free. However, it might not be as easy for a person who works tight shifts and optimizes their free time to spend it with family and relaxing. Truck drivers fall into that category of job types or occupations that barely allow one to have time for other things.
The truck driver job description usually means being on the road for many hours. By the time they take a break, they are usually too tired to find time for other things. The long hours and tiredness may also make truck drivers susceptible to illness. This may be a problem for life insurance pursuits in several ways.
Insurance companies usually have a health class or risk classification, which is key when determining how much a client should pay in insurance premiums. Remember that an insurance company’s whole goal is to limit or delay the likelihood of any payouts for as long as possible.
This is why insurance premiums tend to be lower for healthier people and higher for people with underlying medical conditions. Similarly, the level of risk involved in your occupation will be a critical determinant of the insurance premiums that you will be required to pay.
Going by the above premise, it is easier to see why many truck drivers shy away from taking out life insurance coverage. However, insurance companies have been reaching out to truck drivers by providing more appealing rates. Despite this, the health class is still a useful tool for the insurer. The health class has the following categories.
which is the lowest class, but it happens to be the most common class as many people are of average health with various conditions. This classification also means that your weight and height guidelines are not up to par with the requirements. It is also the classification you will likely find yourself in if you are predisposed to any illness, for example, if there is a history of cancer or diabetes and other types of illnesses in your family.
This is a class above the standard classification, and it is the classification you will likely find yourself in if you have minor health issues, but overall, your health is better than average. People in this classification are slightly over the weight and height guide. They are also not predisposed to any type of illness.
This is the second-best health class, and anyone in this class is considered to be in very good health even if they have minor health issues that can easily be treated with medication. Individuals within this class are also deemed to be within the weight and height guidelines. You may fall into this category even if there is a family history of diseases like cancer and other illnesses that may make you genetically predisposed. This classification is also provided to individuals whose occupations are considered high risk, including sports.
Preferred plus or best class
This is the highest health class that one can attain when applying for life insurance as far as the health rating is concerned. People in this class usually have a clean bill of health, which means that they historically have no health issues and do not take medication since they are not ill. They also meet the weight and height criteria and are not genetically predisposed to any type of illness. As you may have guessed, very few people make it to this category. Being in this health class means you are a low-risk individual, and thus you will likely be able to negotiate lower life insurance premium rates.
Note that some trucking industry jobs might be characterized by higher risk than others. For example, a truck driver who works in a region that is extremely cold and icy might be considered to have more risk than their counterparts who ply routes that have normal weather. This is because icy conditions have a higher risk of accidents. The type of products you ferry may also determine the level of risk as a truck driver. For example, if you transport explosives, fireworks, and chemicals, then you are considered to be carrying highly risky products, and thus your job has a higher risk profile.
What will likely affect your rates as a trucker when applying for life insurance coverage
There are quite a number of factors that may determine your rucking job’s risk profile and thus influence your life insurance premium rate. Some of the factors are generally considered by insurance companies even when applying for health insurance.
Your insurance premium rate might be higher if you are a smoker
This is because smoking increases your risk of respiratory illnesses. Remember that a higher risk of illness puts you in a lower health class, and this means you end up paying higher rates.
Your weight influences your body mass index
If your BMI is within the normal range, you are considered healthy, but if it is higher or lower than the normal range, then it means your health is wanting. It is thus best to ensure that you have a normal BMI.
Your driving history
Your driving records tells the insurance company whether you drive safely or you are a reckless driver. A reckless driver will be deemed a higher risk, and they will end up paying more in insurance rates. This means that you should consider being more careful on the roads if you want lower life insurance rates.
This is one of the things that insurance companies look for when evaluating your medical report.People with a higher cholesterol level are at a higher risk of contracting illnesses, and more risk means higher rates. Most truck drivers struggle with high cholesterol because they eat at fast-food restaurants while on the job. It is thus a good idea to maintain a good fitness regime and good eating habits to ensure that your cholesterol levels are normal. This means you should plan out your meals. For example, you can cook healthier foods while on your breaks or practice ordering healthier foods.
How you spend your leisure time
Most truck drivers prefer to spend their leisure time relaxing with their families. However, some may pursue high-adrenaline thrills that lean on the riskier side. For example, if you prefer thrills like skydiving, deepsea diving, and rock climbing, you are more likely to be involved in an injury or death related to those activities. This means your rates will be higher.
Work with a professional familiar with high risk
If you are a truck driver or an aspiring truck driver, then the above information should come in handy. It is a risky area, but the good news is that the level of risk can be controlled. In this case, consider working with a professional that knows their way around navigating risk. This will help you improve your likelihood of securing lower rates by reducing your risk profile, but they will also likely help you select the type of life insurance coverage that best suits your preferences.
During selecting the type of life insurance that you want, you should ensure that you understand what each has to offer and whether the features are a must-have. However, the most important determinant that you will consider when making your selection will be your income level. Some trucking jobs offer handsome income levels. If you are lucky to be among the truck drivers on the upper echelon as far as income is concerned, you will likely be able to pick a more comprehensive life insurance package.
If you’re a truck driver and need help with life insurance then we can help. We specialize in helping occupation specific cases and shop around with all of the carriers on the market to help get you the best rate! Run a quote on this page.