It’s scary how quickly things can go wrong on the worksite.

Trade Risk can’t stop bad things from happening, but we can be here to help you afterwards.

On such way we can help you is with personal accident insurance.

What is Personal Accident Insurance?

Personal accident is a form of insurance for tradies which can pay you a weekly or monthly benefit for a period of time whilst you cannot work.

To be eligible to claim on the policy, you must have suffered an injury that has left you unable to work.

As well as paying a regular benefit amount to you, some policies, in some cases, will also pay you a lump sum known as a ‘capital benefit’.

The capital benefit generally comes into effect if you suffer a permanent injury or accidental death.

Whilst the insurance is more popular with tradies who work as subcontractors or for their own business, it still has benefits for those who work on wages or salary.

Each personal accident insurance policy will be different in terms of the features and benefits, so if you are considering this form of cover it is important to compare each policy carefully beyond just looking at the cost.

Is it the same as Income Protection?

Personal accident insurance is somewhat similar to income protection, in that its main aim is to replace your income when you cannot work.

But there are some very big differences…

Income Protection Personal Accident
Covers you for injury and illness Covers you for injury only
Can replace you income all the way through to age 65 Can replace your income for a maximum of 2 to 5 years (depending on the policy)
Policy is non-cancellable no matter how much of a ‘risk’ you become Policy can be cancelled at renewal if you become too much of a risk

A wide variety of policy options and benefits available

Relatively limited policy options
Medical tests may be required in some cases No medical questions or tests
Premiums are generally higher Premiums are generally lower
No capital benefit available (but can be combined with TPD insurance) Capital benefits are payable in some cases


So the short answer is ‘no’. Personal accident may be similar in some ways, but it is certainly not the same as income protection.

A personal accident policy will provide you with some protection if you suffer a serious injury, but it is a long way from the comprehensive cover offered by a proper income protection policy.

It’s also important to remember that personal accident only covers you for injuries, unlike income protection which can also cover you for both physical and mental illnesses.

Advantages of Personal Accident

The single most important advantage of personal accident insurance for a tradesman is that it will pay you a regular benefit for period of time if you are injured and cannot work.

Other advantages of personal accident include the following:

  • No medical questions or tests
  • Capital benefits in the event of permanent disability or death
  • Premiums are generally lower than income protection

Trade Insurance

Another benefit of personal accident insurance is that it fills a need for people who do not qualify for a traditional income protection policy.

Tradesmen with a particularly poor medical history may find that they are unable to obtain normal income protection, but with personal accident insurance this is not a problem since the policy is not impacted upon by medical issues.

If you are simply looking for the cheapest form of income insurance to get onto the worksite and you aren’t particularly concerned about the comprehensiveness of the cover, personal accident may be a good option.

Disadvantages of Personal Accident

When we talk about the disadvantages of personal accident insurance, really we are talking about the disadvantages relative to a proper income protection policy.

Some of these disadvantages include the following:

  • No coverage for sickness or illness
  • Monthly benefit amounts are very limited
  • Benefit periods are very limited
  • The insurer can choose not to renew your policy (see non-cancellable insurance)
  • Ability to claim is limited compared with income protection

Capital Benefits Vs TPD Insurance

One of the advantages that personal accident has over income protection is the capital benefits feature.

The ‘capital benefit’ is the lump sum that a personal injury policy can pay you if you suffer a permanent injury that leaves you unable to work.


Whilst this option is generally not available within a standard income protection policy, you can package TPD insurance with your income protection.

You can learn more about TPD insurance by following the link to our dedicated guide, but basically it will payout if you suffer an injury or illness that leaves you unable or unlikely to ever return to work.

The benefit amounts available on TPD insurance compared with the capital benefits from a personal injury policy are far more comprehensive, and it will also cover you for injury and illness rather than just injury.

The Experts Opinion

We asked Steve Christie from Trade Risk Life for his thoughts on personal injury insurance. Steve is our in-house expert on income protection and life insurance.

“Personal injury insurance is a good start, but you need to keep in mind that it will only cover you if you suffer an injury and are unable to work.

It won’t provide any protection if you can’t work due to illness, and it’s also fairly limited in terms of the benefits it provides.

Without a doubt it’s better for a tradesman to have some personal insurance than no insurance at all, but I’d strongly recommend considering a full income protection policy”.

Steve works from our Brisbane office and is contactable on 07 3856 6960 if you’d like to discuss more about your personal insurance needs.

Quotes and More Information

Unlike many other insurance groups, here at Trade Risk we hold authorisations to deal in both personal accident insurance as well as proper income protection.

If you would like a quote on either form (or both forms) of insurance, please complete our online quote request or call our experts on 1800 808 800.

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In 2017 Trade Risk was awarded a Gold Trusted Service Award for the amazing service we offer to thousands of tradies from around Australia.

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