Rachael Brennan has been working in the insurance industry since 2006 when she began working as a licensed insurance representative for 21st Century Insurance, during which time she earned her Property and Casualty license in all 50 states. After several years she expanded her insurance expertise, earning her license in Health and AD&D insurance as well. She has worked for small health insuran...

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Chris Harrigan has an economic degree from Limestone College and an MBA from Clemson University. He previously managed auto insurance claims for Enterprise Rent-A-Car. Currently, he is using his business and insurance expertise to provide insurance data analysis and visualizations to enhance the user experience.

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Reviewed by Chris Harrigan
Former Auto Insurance Claims Manager Chris Harrigan

UPDATED: Oct 13, 2020

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Key takeaways...

  • Sports professionals are required by law to purchase auto insurance on all of their vehicles just like anyone else
  • You should carry the maximum liability limits offered and supplemental insurance to protect your assets
  • Many sports professionals have a financial adviser or special finance expert overseeing their insurance portfolios
  • If you have an exotic or extremely valuable vehicle, you may have to purchase a specialized auto insurance plan
  • Understand how drivers in your home and how your personal rating factors can affect your personal insurance rates

Sports professionals earn a living doing something that they love to do. A majority of players who make it to the big leagues have been developing their skills and creating a name for themselves in the sports scene since they were in elementary school.

With the blood, sweat, and tears has come success, financial rewards, and the opportunity to travel.

As exciting as your life may be as a professional athlete, you’re still a citizen who’s required to abide by state and federal laws. Anyone who owns a car, no matter what their occupation is, is required by law to insure it.

Since you’re a professional athlete who faces all types of vulnerabilities, it’s crucial that you review your insurance needs in and out. Compare car insurance quotes today to find the best rate for the coverage you need.

Here’s a guide to help you prepare:

Why is budgeting so important for athletes?

When you sign a multi-million dollar contract, the last thing that you’re worried about is paying thousands of dollars each term to insure your cars.

Unfortunately, while athletes do earn a huge sum of money, they often don’t consider how short their careers can be.

Spending frivolously is a huge problem because there’s only so long you’ll be offered that type of money. An injury or a slump in your performance could turn you from a sought-after player to someone who finds it difficult to get drafted.

Since nothing is guaranteed, you must be smart with your investments and your spending. It’s your job to find affordable premiums and other great deals so that you aren’t throwing away money every month.

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Professional Athletes Are Classified as High-risk Drivers

The wealthiest people in the United States aren’t just wealthy because they earn a lot of money, they are wealthy because they are frugal. They don’t spend too much on mandatory expenses because they shop around.

As you start to shop around for your auto insurance, you’ll find that being an athlete doesn’t work in your favor.

Blue collar workers, white collar workers, entrepreneurs and professional athletes all have the potential to be safe drivers. Unfortunately, no matter how great of a driver you think you are, insurers will put you in a risk category.

One of the factors that are used to place you in a classification is your occupation.

Professionals athletes in each and every sport are categorized as high-risk drivers.

It doesn’t matter if you’re a football player, a soccer player, a basketball player, or a triathlete. If you fall into the broad sports professional category, you’re going to be classified as a high-risk driver who has to pay a high-risk rate.

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Why are athletes considered high-risk drivers?

When an insurance company is calculating a rate, the carrier has to look at the potential risk and the claims data that’s been gathered in the recent years.

You might not have any claims but you have to fall into some type of risk pool where you’re rated with drivers who have similar factors. This is why you pay for the mistakes of others.

Athletes who earn a living playing on a field or court are grouped into a high-risk occupation class for a few different reasons.

Here are some other factors that contribute:

  • Athletes are often in a younger age group
  • Many athletes drive very expensive or exotic cars that cost much more than the average vehicle
  • Athletes may drive their vehicles all over the country as they travel
  • Vehicles may be metropolitan areas or in sports complexes where there’s higher risk for vandalism

Carrying High Limits of Liability is a Must

Auto insurance requirements are set by state regulators. Once the officials determine how much insurance vehicle owners need, the requirements will be drafted in the vehicle code.

Everyone, no matter how beloved they are as an athlete, must comply with the law.

Failing to comply with the law by purchasing insurance is a big deal, but it’s also a big deal if you don’t have enough third-party liability coverage.

The minimum requirements are extraordinarily low in each state. You must have the highest limits offered and also some supplemental liability coverage for an extra buffer of protection.

The extra coverage is referred to as a Personal Liability Umbrella.

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What does a Personal Liability Umbrella cover?

A PLUP is a supplemental policy that you buy in addition to other property insurance plans. You must have an auto policy and a home policy with a minimum amount of personal liability coverage in place to qualify for a PLUP.

The protection will range from $1 million in supplemental coverage to $10 million. After the limits on your auto or home policy are exhausted, the PLUP will kick in.

Is it best to deal with a specialty company or broker?

Not all standard insurance companies are willing to accept high-profile applicants regardless of how much they will pay in premiums. If you’re having trouble finding auto insurance, you have to consider all of your options.

One option would be to work with a brokerage or a specialty insurer.

You need to work with a specialty company if you have an exotic car or a vehicle with a turbocharged engine. It’s also wise if you have several different cars and SUVs and you need blanket protection.

If you have just one rare vehicle and the rest are standard models, consider buying insurance on the primary cars from a standard company first.

Getting insurance isn’t as easy as you’d think as a high-profile athlete. You’re a high risk to insurers who have to cover your financial losses.

The best way to find a good deal is to shop around. Use the Internet to shop while you’re on or off the road and get instant quotes now.