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Can Australian expats get life insurance when living overseas?

can Australian expats get life insurance while living overseas?

We often get asked by Australians living overseas – Can Australian expats get life insurance?  Our research tells us it is still possible to obtain life insurance in Australia, but you may be subject to different application requirements than had you been living in Australia.

can Australian expats get life insurance

Can Australian Expats Get Life Insurance?

Your eligibility for life insurance as Australian Expat will be subject to such things as the country you are living in overseas, and how long you intend remaining overseas for.

Life Insurance Direct specialise in helping Australian expats with reviewing, managing and adding to their current life insurance requirements while they are living abroad. They have advised that a number of insurers have changed how willing they are to offer life insurance to Australian expats, which we share below.

Expat Arrangements

Life insurers will first want to confirm the following about your personal situation :

  • Confirmation of your Australian citizenship
  • That your employment overseas (or living arrangement) is for a set period of time
  • The set period of time is generally no more than 5 years, and there is a clear date for your return to Australia

Country of Residence

In addition, the country you are residing in will have a bearing on your eligibility to take out life insurance as an Australian expat.  The Australian government’s smart traveller website currently uses four levels of travel warning

  • Level 1 – Exercise normal safety precautions
  • Level 2 – Exercise a high degree of caution
  • Level 3 – Reconsider your need to travel
  • Level 4 – Do not travel

The first two levels are generally considered acceptable, whilst level 3 may require individual consideration of your life insurance application.  If you are living in a Level 4 country, then it is likely that you will be unable to obtain life insurance through an Australian life insurance provider (but you could still ask!).

To give some context to these travel warnings, as at 28 June 2017, Level 1 countries include Western European countries, Singapore, UAE, Qatar, Canada, and the USA.  Countries in Level 3 include Egypt, Bahrain, Lebanon, Algeria, Saudi Arabia and Venzuela, and countries in Level 4 include Congo, Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Yemen and Libya.

Application for life insurance to be signed in Australia

Life Insurance Direct have also advised that a number of life insurers will require the application to be signed / completed in Australia.  This might be effected by applying for life insurance before you move overseas, or applying for life insurance when you are visiting Australia on holiday or for business.

In some cases you may also be able to arrange for the application to be signed by your power of attorney, but you should discuss this with your financial advisor.

Disclaimer : This information is for educational purposes only and does not constitute financial or taxation advice. As this information is not advice and has been prepared without taking into account your objectives, financial situation or needs you should, before acting on this information, consider its appropriateness for your circumstances. Independent advice should be obtained from an Australian financial services licensee before making investment decisions, and a registered (tax) financial advisor/accountant in relation to taxation decisions. To the extent permitted by law, we exclude all liability for any loss or damage arising in any way.  We may receive referral commissions from companies referred in this article.


About the author


Craig is an Australian Expat and the founder of The Australian Expat Investor. Craig is passionate about investing, and while Craig cannot give personal financial or tax advice, Craig enjoys sharing investing, tax, and other tips for Australian expats to help them to build their wealth while living abroad and get the most out of their time living overseas. Get his free ebook on 9 Financial Surprises That Could Cost Australian Expats Thousands of Dollars

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