Canstar reveals the winner of its Direct Income Protection Award

Canstar has named the winner of its annual Direct Income Protection Award.

With the COVID-19 outbreak impacting so many Australians financially, many of us have thought about how we might cope, should we lose our income. 

Income protection insurance is one form of protection that may offer eligible customers a level of cover if they can’t work due to sickness or injury for an extended period of time, after they’ve served any applicable waiting period.

Consumers will need to check with their insurer regarding what cover their existing policy, or a new one they are considering, could provide for coronavirus-related events, as well as when they might become eligible to receive any benefit payments under their policy.

If you’re considering a policy to provide a level of cover for your income, or are reviewing your current cover, Canstar’s Star Ratings provide a shortlist that enables consumers to narrow their search to products that have been assessed and rated.

How does Canstar rate income protection policies?

Canstar has assessed each eligible policy across 80 different consumer profiles, considering age, occupational category, gender, and smoking status. 

In each profile, products have been given a Star Rating based on a combination of price (monthly premiums) based on one high and one low sum insured amount; and features, including those related to the application process and initial policy options, payment options, available cover, the claims process, customer support and the policy termination process. 

The Outstanding Value Direct Income Protection Award has then been given to the provider deemed to offer the strongest overall value, based on the cumulative performance of their cover across all 80 profiles.

You can take a look at the Direct Income Protection Star Ratings results to view the full list of policies that won a 5-Star Rating this year.

For more information on how the Award is determined, read the Direct Income Protection methodology

2021 Direct Income Protection Award

The winner of Canstar’s Outstanding Value – Direct Income Protection Award is:


DIP NobleOakNobleOak has taken out the Direct Income Protection Award for the sixth year in a row, having first won in 2016. It beat the rest of the market on both price and feature scores. In particular, Canstar Research noted it led on price with its premiums cheaper on average than the market average across the range of consumer profiles considered.  For example, if we look at truck drivers who typically pay one of the highest income protection premiums, a female in her early 30s could pay nearly 45% less in premiums than the market average for a policy with a $3,125 monthly benefit. A male of the same age could pay over 47% less.

According to NobleOak, its Premium Life Direct Income policy offers the following features:

  • A monthly benefit of up to $25,000
  • A benefit period of either two years or up until you turn 65
  • Fully underwritten cover, which NobleOak says means greater certainty in the event of a claim

These were among the features that made a contribution to NobleOak retaining its Award this year, on top of the value it offers when it comes to premiums, according to Canstar Research.

Cover image source: PowerUp/

This content was reviewed by Deputy Editor Sean Callery and Sub Editor Jacqueline Belesky as part of our fact-checking process.

Shay has worked in content for over a decade. Her experience includes PR and copywriting in Australia and the UK where she consulted to Lloyds Banking Group. She also gained work experience at Czech Republic English-language newspaper The Prague Post and Quest newspaper The Wynnum Herald.

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