Armor up: How stars insure their dreams

Morgan Stanley Wealth Management

06/26/24

Summary: For many athletes and entertainers, insurance is about more than just protecting cash; it's about safeguarding a mindset — proactively covering your own back, so you can maintain the focus needed to perform at your peak.

Ladies huddles up

You have to be fearless to shine in the limelight. Ask any pro athlete or entertainer. To succeed at the highest level, in a hyper-competitive industry, you have to be willing to put everything on the line. But to keep on shining even after the curtains close?

That takes planning.

Because here’s the unspoken truth of the hustle. In the sports and entertainment industry, even the brightest career can end overnight. One injury or accident. One production issue or industry interruption. One. Bad. Break. That’s all it can take for your career, and career earnings, to end unexpectedly.

That’s why you have to prioritize your own protection. Because in an industry where success today offers no guarantee of job security tomorrow — you have to take measures to help secure your financial future. And your family’s legacy.

One of the most critical yet overlooked measures? Insurance.

The skycam view of insurance

For many athletes and entertainers, insurance is about more than just protecting cash; it's about safeguarding a mindset — proactively covering your own back, so you can maintain the focus needed to perform at your peak.

But let’s be real. Like most financial matters for high earners, navigating the insurance game isn’t easy. In large part, that’s because there’s a maze of options, each with its own benefits  and price tags. For example, these days it’s not uncommon to hear about a basketball player getting special insurance coverage for his knees, or a singer getting coverage on her vocal chords.

That’s the complicated thing about insurance: you can get coverage for almost anything if you’re willing to foot the bill. So one of the primary challenges is figuring out what kind of insurance you actually need. The right solution for one star can be totally different from the next. And really, it can change significantly over the course of one’s career.

In the sports and entertainment industry, even the brightest career can end overnight.

Star power protection

Say the word "sports injury," and the image that likely comes to mind is a football player down on the turf, holding his leg after a rough tackle. But every sport has its share of injuries. Same with the entertainment industry.

Take this scenario: You're a chart-topping singer about to embark on a world tour that's been years in the making. The stage is set, the fans are buzzing with anticipation, and then... bam! You're hit with a health emergency that throws everything off track. Suddenly, that spotlight you were one step away from? It feels a million miles away.

Here’s where High Limit Disability insurance steps in. It’s a type of insurance that provides coverage for lost income in the event that a person suffers an injury or illness. And while regular disability insurance might have you maxing out at a certain payout (which just means the amount you can get paid from the insurance company), High Limit Disability insurance may offer substantially higher coverage limits. So you can keep your hustle going strong, even when life tries to slow you down.

Defend your domain

While High Limit Disability insurance may tackle the financial fallout from personal injury or illness, there's another crucial aspect of safeguarding your wealth: protecting your assets. And when you're living the high life of an athlete or entertainer, that means looking into Property and Casualty insurance.

Let’s look at home insurance, for example. Because unless you’re buying a sports team, a home is probably one the biggest purchases you’ll make in your life. And it really needs to be protected. But while almost all homeowners have home insurance, for athletes and entertainers, it can be really hard to get right.

In part, that’s because athletes and entertainers often play, so to speak, in the big leagues of the real estate market. But the added complication is that they could have multiple properties, staffs to manage those homes, and maybe even a large memorabilia collection that makes it hard to accurately assess insurance needs. Bottom line: you need to work with a knowledgeable professional who is going to take the time to do a custom analysis for you. Because everyone’s needs are different.

Find your armor. Insurance as a forethought

Insurance should not be an afterthought. It’s a power move — one of the core ways we help athletes and entertainers protect their dreams and build legacies of greatness.

Because let's face it, even the biggest stars can’t predict the future. Whether it's an injury benching a career, a fluke accident, or the threat of losing prized possessions to the unexpected, just the thought is enough to make anyone wake up in a sweat. So always remember the old coach wisdom: you can’t control the game, you can only control your readiness.

Listen up. Reach out.

If you’re hungry for more on this topic, check out “Protecting Your Star Power”, a new audiocast from Morgan Stanley that peels the curtain back on how today’s brightest stars protect their hustle, plan for the unexpected — and shine behind the scenes.

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