Nearly half of women in employment in the UK do not have any form of protection in place, according to an Aegon report.
The study, entitled Protection Matters, surveyed 2,051 women and found just 10 per cent of working females receive protection automatically through their workplace.
Aegon argues protection is important to women when looking at job roles. More than two in five (44 per cent) of women had asked their current employer about the the existing provisions, and nearly a third said it was a key factor.
In addition, 46 per cent of the sample agreed with the sentiment that it is their sole responsibility to financially support their family should the unexpected happen.
Meanwhile, just over half of working women said they were the main breadwinner in the family.
Stephen Crosbie, protection director at Aegon, said: “Women can no longer rely on their employers to automatically provide the financial safety net that protection provides. With women’s incomes becoming increasingly important to a family’s financial security there’s a need for more women to put their own plans in place.
“While the levels of automatic protection provision are surprisingly low, this era of self-provision presents a real opportunity for advisers to engage with working women and to discuss the importance of taking out a personal protection policy."
Jane King, mortgage adviser at London based Ash-Ridge Private Finance, said: “I would say that it is the same for both genders. Young people nowadays seem more concerned about insuring their iPhones than insuring themselves against the event of severe injury or illness. I talk to people about the importance of protection but I am often faced with the ‘it is never going to happen to me’ response. There needs to be more education on the topic.”