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Does Renters Insurance coverage Cowl Canine Bites?


A third of tenants live with dogs, which shows how many of us love our four-legged friends. It also means that if you are a dog owner and you are renting, rental insurance to cover dog bites is important. And while your cute little pup may not have a known history of biting, you never know how your dog will react in stressful situations or with strangers. The right tenant insurance for dog bites not only offers health insurance for the bitten person, but also gives your finances additional protection against liability claims.

Dog bites are more common than many realize. According to the Insurance Information Institute, over 4.5 million dog bites occur each year. Children ages five to nine have the highest rate of dog bite injuries. Since tenant insurance covers dog bites in most cases, with restrictions, adding a fur baby to your family is tenant insurance for your household.

[ Read: How to Choose the Best Renters Insurance ]

Dog breeds that are not included in the tenant insurance

Renters’ insurance carriers may limit coverage for dog bites depending on the breed. The most common breeds that are excluded from renter insurance are pit bulls and rottweilers. Since each carrier can create their own list of excluded breeds, it is important to confirm that your dog’s breed is insured before assuming your rental insurance has you covered.

Here is a list of the top 10 dog breeds that are excluded from renter insurance coverage:

  • Pit bull
  • rottweiler
  • Alaskan Malamute
  • Akita
  • Chow Chow
  • Doberman pinscher
  • Wolf hybrids
  • Great Dane
  • German shepherd dog
  • Siberian husky

If your breed of dog is not covered, it means that your rental insurance will not provide reimbursement for medical costs related to dog bite injuries or liability insurance to defend yourself in court or out of court.

It is important to note that if you have any of the dog breeds listed above, you shouldn’t be deterred from purchasing comprehensive renter insurance. You can find insurance companies that don’t require you to disclose your dog’s breed. State Farm is an example of a tenant insurance carrier that doesn’t ask about race.

Better to switch to a carrier who doesn’t ask about the breed than to be dishonest about your dog’s breed with your current carrier. If you find that the information is being misrepresented to your operator, it could lead to the cancellation of the policy.

How to file an insurance claim for a dog bite

If you need to file a dog bite application with your tenant insurance, the steps are the same regardless of whether you live in a rental house, apartment, or condominium. As soon as the dog bite occurs, the policyholder must notify the renter’s insurance carrier.

If the person who was bitten did not need medical attention, a claim may not be required. If the bite does not result in injury, the insurance carrier may not let you make a claim at all.

[ For You: What Does Renters Insurance Cover? ]

If medical assistance is required, such as from the hospital, a doctor’s visit or reconstructive plastic surgery, a liability claim will be triggered for your policy. The dog bite victim’s insurance carrier will step in as well, and that company will work with your carrier to cover liability. Your liability limits are usually in the range of $ 100,000 to $ 300,000 unless you have additional liability insurance.

You should be aware that the average cost per dog bite claim in 2019 was $ 44,760 and the insurance industry paid out dog bite claims of approximately $ 797 million. These statistics are an amazing reminder of how expensive dog bites can be.

Are other pets insured?

Certain breeds of dogs are not the only ones included or excluded from rental insurance. Most renter insurance policies exclude exotic animals, farm animals and saddles. If you need coverage for these types of pets, you will need an additional guideline. The carrier can include a generic exclusion of reptiles, poultry, or hoofed animals in their renter insurance.

You should also note that tenant insurance is different from pet insurance. If you have a rental insurance with pet liability, this protects you from being personally liable for damage or personal injury caused by your pet, such as: B. with a dog bite. However, pet insurance is insurance for your pet’s health-related expenses, including veterinary visits and procedures.

Other policy options for dog accidents

In addition to tenant insurance, there are other options for covering dog accidents for which there are gaps in your tenant insurance. As a responsible dog owner, you want to make sure that you have adequate protection in the event of an accident or bite with your pet. Consider the following:

  • Increase your liability insurance: If your current tenant insurance pays $ 100,000 for liability and $ 1,000 for involuntary medical payments, consider increasing your policy to $ 300,000 for liability and $ 5,000 for involuntary medical payments. If you are a dog owner this will ensure that your limits are high enough to cover dog bites.
  • Roof insurance: The personal umbrella insurance offers additional liability protection when your tenant insurance ends. If your tenant insurance currently has a liability limit of $ 300,000, roof top insurance will provide coverage in excess of that amount. You should confirm that your top policy provides protection from dog bites and dog-related accidents.
  • Dog Liability Policy: A dog liability policy is a separate pet policy that you can purchase that covers every breed of dog with every bite history. This is an addition to your current tenant policy or if you don’t have a top policy.

[ More: How Much Renters Insurance Do I Need? ]

Too long, not read?

Owning a pet comes with a ton of responsibilities, including adequate insurance for renters in the event of a dog bite. If your breed of dog is normally excluded from the insured pet list, look for a carrier who doesn’t restrict dog breeds. It is important to review how to make a claim and what your policy covers when you bring your new family member home.

If your tenant insurance does not have a sufficiently high liability limit, you can increase your liability insurance or take out a separate umbrella or dog liability insurance to get more liability insurance.

We appreciate your feedback on this article. Contact us at enquiries@thesimpledollar.com with any comments or questions.

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