The One Thing a Pet Owner Must Do Before Purchasing Pet Insurance

The One Thing a Pet Owner Must Do Before Purchasing Pet Insurance

Before purchasing pet insurance for their pets, there are many factors that pet owners should consider. Failure to do adequate research and fully understand what they are purchasing is the main reason that pet owners have claims denied and/or end up being disappointed with pet insurance. Reading and understanding the policy they are about to purchase is an absolute necessity to making a wise purchase.

The first thing you should do when beginning your research is to visit each company’s website and obtain a quote for your pet(s). How to do this is usually prominently displayed on the website’s homepage. You should do this first to avoid having to read through a lot of information about policies for which your pet may not even be eligible for coverage. For example, the company may not offer policies in the state you live in. They may not offer policies to pets over or under a certain age. You will usually be asked to answer some questions about your pet’s previous medical history and if your pet has a chronic disease, the company may offer you an accident-only policy. When answering questions about your pet’s health – be truthful. Any attempt to mislead the insurance company is fraud and can lead to a claim being rejected and/or result in the company cancelling the policy.

Please listen to the following advice because I consider it to the one thing that every pet owner must do before purchasing pet insurance. After you have determined which policies your pet is eligible for, print out a copy of a sample policy and read it. I’ve seen or heard of too many pet owners who only read the policy after having a claim denied or getting back a reimbursement much lower than they expected. Most of the time, the reason was right there in black and white in the policy that they never bothered to read. As you are reading the policy, highlight any items you have a question about and call or e-mail the company for an explanation. Do not be afraid to continue asking questions until you are sure you understand the answers given. Do this for each and every company that you research.

Sometimes the reasons for the frustrations and remorse that pet owners have about their purchase of pet insurance is because the insurance company failed to provide the customer service that they should have. But, many times it is because the pet owner had unrealistic expectations because they didn’t actually read and understand the policy they purchased.

You may be saying, “Gee Doc, that seems like an awful lot of trouble to go to just to buy pet insurance.” Consider this scenario. Let’s say 2 years after you purchase a policy you become frustrated and decide to drop your policy (with Company A) and go with a different company (Company B). During the 2 years you were with Company A, you filed several claims. When you sign up with Company B, there is a chance that those problems could be excluded from coverage as pre-existing conditions. That’s why it’s best to do all you can and get it right the first time.