NAIC Pet Insurance
Q: Who Needs Pet Insurance?
A: Many of the Pet Insurance companies emphasize that dog owners have a policy. This is because the veterinarian costs tend to be higher due to dog’s higher chance of injury due to more active lifestyles. However, pet insurance is also geared towards cat owners. Premiums are usually less expensive for cats because many tend to stay indoors much or all of the time.
Q: Do all pet insurance policies have the same coverage?
A: No-Pet insurance plans vary from company to company, and even policies within the same insurance company differ. Some insurance plans cover accidents to your pet, but not illnesses. Some plans cover treatment for cancer while others do not. It can be confusing so you will need to do some research. If you are still uncertain, try asking your veterinarian for advice, as they often hear about the policies from their pet’s owners.
Q: How Does the Premium Price Affect Coverage?
A: Cheaper policies tend to provide less coverage. A low price is not a bargain if your insurance denies your pet’s claim. Look at the policy carefully to see what you are getting-what is covered and what is not covered. It is worth the time and effort to research your options.
Q: Can I use the Veterinarian of my Choice?
A: Yes-All pet insurance companies will allow claims from any licensed Veterinarian.
Q: How Does the Claims Process Work?
A: With human health insurance, your doctor invoices your insurance company, and you may never see the bill. However, with pet insurance you have to pay your veterinary bill and then submit your claim to your pet insurance company for reimbursement.
Q: Are Pre-Existing Conditions Covered?
A: Most Insurance companies will not pay for a procedure that is due to a pet’s pre-existing condition, whether known or unknown. But there are some that will pay for claims due to a pre-existing condition, and with some it depends on the circumstances.
Q: Is Pet Insurance worth It?
A: Pet insurance protects you from large unexpected veterinary bills. However, some with indoor or low risk pets may opt to open a separate bank account to contribute to should anything catastrophic occur. With the right policy or back-up plan, you and your pet should be protected from a catastrophic occurrence and financial hardship. Please see the below links for more information.
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The most common mistake travelers make is forgetting to read the policy. Travel insurance does not cover every inconvenience under the sun. It covers standard losses associated with travel. Use the first 30 days you have your policy to review it. This is called a “free look” period. Cancel the policy if it does not meet your needs. Be sure to look at covered reasons, scope of coverage, or coverage provisions. Don’t miss the “limitations and exclusions” section as well.
What travel insurance covers:
- Trip cancellation for covered reasons only
- Trip delay for covered reasons only
- Medical emergencies independent of pre-existing conditions
- Baggage loss /delay
What travel insurance does not cover:
- Illness of a traveling party due to pre-existing condition
- Leaving a trip voluntarily
- Everything else
What are common “covered reasons”?
- Illness of a traveling party
- Hurricane or weather event
- Jury duty
- Required to work
- Assaulted before trip
- Loss of passport due to theft before trip
- (more, please read your policy!)
- Read your travel insurance policy carefully. Pay particular attention to the ‘Limitations and Exclusions’ section so you understand what is and is not covered. Some policies will not cover you if your medical emergency involves excessive alcohol or extreme sports. If there is anything in your policy you don’t understand, call your insurance company for clarification.
- Do not answer the questionnaire based on what you think is relevant. Even the smallest treatment or diagnosis, when not answered correctly, can make your insurance null and void. It is better to over-report than under-report. You may have to pay a higher premium, but you will be assured to have coverage in the event of an emergency.
- Certain questions on the questionnaire ask you about medications you are taking, which can cause confusion. Contact your pharmacist for a list of prescriptions you are currently taking. For instance, if you have a standing prescription at the pharmacy for a medication, the insurance company could understand that to mean that you are taking it even though you’re not currently filling that prescription.
- If you’re over 60, you will most likely have to fill out a medical questionnaire when you apply for travel health insurance. If you are uncertain as to how to answer a question, consult your doctor with questions, and ask for your medical records. This will help you understand any conditions you have so you can answer the questions accurately. You must be as accurate as possible in answering your travel insurance application questions, especially those that relate to the cost of your trip and medical conditions.
- If there is a question about high blood pressure and you are taking medication for it as a preventive prescription, the insurance company could understand this to mean you have been diagnosed with this condition.
- Make sure you understand the definitions of all the terms on the questionnaire. For Example, being tested for a condition could mean you have been treated for it to some insurance companies.
- If you experience a medical emergency while on your trip, contact your insurance provider right away. Your claims may not be paid in full if you do not receive prior approval.
- Make sure to check your credit card policies to see if they offer travel insurance coverage prior to purchasing travel insurance. Often credit card companies offer certain travel coverage such as compensation for a trip interruption or delay expenses and lost luggage.
- If your claim is denied, appeal to the insurance company. If that does not work, contact the Department of Financial Regulation-Insurance Division.