Why was TopCover created?TopCover was designed specifically for professional pilots. It was initially created by and for the pilots of Cathay Pacific and DragonAir as a benefit of membership of their pilots’ associations (unions). TopCover has been providing benefits for pilots across the world since 1999.
TopCover is designed to protect your flying career and to provide long-term financial security for you and your family. Each section of cover is designed to protect against the different challenges that you may face following a serious illness or injury that prevents you from flying.
Who can apply for TopCover benefits?If you are employed as a pilot with any of the aviation businesses listed on this site, you are eligible to apply for TopCover benefits for you and your family members.
Who is the insurer?TopCover is specialist product that is provided by Starr International Insurance (Asia) Limited – a member of Starr Companies – based in Hong Kong.
Starr International Insurance (Asia) Limited is rated A by AM Best.
What is the additional cover I can buy?You may select additional ‘voluntary benefits’ to suit your own insurance needs.
Income Protection benefit :   up to a maximum of US $15,000 per month
Personal Accident benefit :   up to US$500,000 for Member and spouse
Critical Illness benefit:           up to US $150,000 for you and your dependents
Is the scheme regulated and protected?Yes. TopCover is a fully regulated and protected insurance scheme provided by Starr.
Your premiums are paid directly to Starr in Hong Kong, and are protected under Hong Kong law. The policy offers full dispute resolution rights to policyholders.
How do I apply?Click on the link for your operator on this website. You can obtain a quotation, and then amend your choices of cover until you are happy with the benefits and the premium. Then simply apply directly on line.
How do I pay?All payments are made by credit card in US dollars. All payments are made directly to Starr. Your card will not be charged until you have been accepted for cover.
Do I need to have a medical?No. For additional benefits you need to complete the application form, which includes a medical questionnaire. Please ensure that you declare all of your relevant medical history, and provide supporting medical evidence where necessary.
If you have a medical history or conditions that may increase the likelihood of you claiming in the future, the insurer may restrict your cover and / or apply exclusions.
Once your cover is accepted, it will not be restricted in the future if your medical condition changes, provided that you continue to renew your policy.
What if I already have insurance?TopCover is not affected by any Loss of Licence insurance you may have that provides a lump sum payment. Other Personal Accident and Life insurance does not affect your TopCover benefits either.
If you have other monthly income protection schemes that will pay you for the same cause of claim, then your benefits may be restricted to a total maximum of 75% of your gross income or $15,000 per month, whichever is the greater.
What if I need to claim?It is very important that you claim as soon as you suspect that you may be off work for a prolonged period. Notify the Insurer and seek assistance as early as possible. Please read the Claims section on this website.
Has TopCover paid many claims?Yes. TopCover has paid many millions of dollars in benefits to pilots in airlines across the world for Income Protection, Personal Accident and Critical illness. See Testimonials.
Do I pay premiums whilst I am claiming?If you are claiming Income Protection benefit you do not need to continue to pay premiums. If you do recover from your illness and return to work flying for your current airline, you cover will commence again, and premiums will become due from the time your insurance cover commences.
You may continue with your Personal Accident insurance whilst receiving Income Protection benefit, and premiums payment will be due at renewal as normal.
What is the Waiting Period of 180 days?This is the period of time from the date you are first unable to fly due to an accident or illness before your benefit payments commence. Six months can pass quickly so it is important to make your claim promptly. If you return to work after being paid benefit, but are subsequently sick again from the same cause within 180 days, the Waiting Period is waived.
What if I get my licence back?TopCover has helped many pilots return to flying, either with their original employer, or with a new airline. TopCover does not insure your licence. It insures your income. Therefore, if your get a new flying job after a period of disability, but at a lower salary, your Income Protection will still pay you a benefit until your new income matches or exceeds your original earnings.
What if I want to change my benefits?If your circumstances change (promotion, marriage etc.) you may wish to review your cover. You can apply to increase your benefits at any time.
If you now declare a new medical condition that the insurer decides to exclude, it will not affect any existing cover that you already have, provided you keep your cover in place.
What if I leave my current airline?If you leave your current airline, you must tell the insurer as soon as is possible. If you join another airline in the HKBAC your cover will be automatically transferred. If you join another airline or operator with a TopCover policy the insurer will try to transfer your cover subject to sufficient notice.
If you are moving to an airline that does not have TopCover, your cover will end 30 days after you leave your current employer. You may be eligible for a refund of some of your premium in accordance with the policy terms.
If you are planning to leave Hong Kong or your current employment please contact Starr for assitance.
Why does TopCover have three integrated insurance covers?TopCover aims to provide a complete financial safety net to cover any medical conditions that you might face. Income Protection may not always cover every eventuality. For example, with a terminal illness, income protection needs to be supplemented by an immediate cash payment (Critical Illness). If an insured pilot were to die in an accident, a Personal Accident lump sum of cash is payable to the nominated dependents. The three sections of cover are all contained in the same policy, allowing the appropriate response to any medical disability with out any clash between different insurance policies.
What is special about the Personal Accident Insurance?Pilots face a special risk when traveling the world. You may find yourself off duty down route. Are you insured through ordinary insurance if you are skiing, or hiring a motor cycle? Does your employers’ Accident cover extend to you? TopCover was designed to protect you by covering these risks. The PA insurance is very good value and is also available for your spouse.
There are very few exclusions to the personal accident cover. The main exclusion is recreational and professional flying – including when on duty for your employer, as that is invariably insured by your employers’ policy.
What is special about the Critical Illness insurance?TopCover is an OWN OCCUPATION cover – specifying your profession as a pilot. In addition to providing an immediate cash benefit for the 11 serious illnesses listed, TopCover provides benefit if you are permanently unable to fly due to any medical condition.

This benefit was designed to supplement Income Protection :
for pilots who are within 5 years of the maximum age limit
for pilots who suffer from a very serious or life-threatening illness

The immediate access to a cash lump sum can also assist with additional medical costs. This is a valuable cover and worthy of close consideration.

What is the age limit?There is no age limit to apply. The age limits for each section of cover are:
Income Protection:   to age 60
Critical Illness:          to age 60
Personal Accident:   to age 65
I have another questionIf you have another question please contact us and we will try to get an answer for you as soon as is possible.