Pet liability issues and your homeowners insurance.
While the idea of your dog biting and injuring someone might seem unlikely, it’s actually more common than you might think. With over 4.5 million instances of dog bites and attacks recorded each year, there’s a definite possibility that your pet might lash out. So, what should you do if your dog causes injuries to another party? Here’s what you need to know about pet liability issues and your home insurance.
Dogs and Homeowners Insurance
Technically, your pets are covered under your homeowners insurance policy. However, there are certain “dangerous” breeds that many insurers will refuse to cover. This is true even if your dog has never shown signs of aggression or been involved in a liability issue before. If your insurer will not extend coverage for your pet, there are other insurance options available. Sometimes you can secure the coverage you need by adding an endorsement to your policy or by securing a completely separate policy specifically designed to cover dog-related liability issues.
If a Bite Occurs
If your dog does bite another party, then you might not know how to proceed. If the incident is minor, you might be tempted to simply pay for the injured party’s medical treatment out of pocket. While this would help you avoid the claims process and any subsequent premium increases, this is a risky move. Failing to disclose a pet-related liability issue could violate the terms of your policy and, should your insurer find out about this, they could cancel your coverage. Additionally, by paying out-of-pocket, you also face the risk of future claims from the affected party. For instance, if unforeseen complications arise from the incident, the victim might choose to sue you down the line. If you haven’t reported the claim to your insurer, you will not receive coverage for legal expenses. This in turn, would leave you completely financially responsible for your attorney and settlement costs.
This is what you need to know about your homeowners insurance and pet-related liability issues. Do you have further questions regarding your personal insurance coverage? Then contact the experts at Gant Insurance Agency in McKinney, Texas. We are ready to assist you with all your coverage needs today.