Decisions Concerning Coverage and Dog Bite Insurance

Decisions Concerning Coverage and Dog Bite Insurance

Some homeowners and renters insurance policies cover liability for dog bites. Consequently, those who are insured under such policies usually have coverage in the event their pet accidentally, or intentionally, causes an injury to someone. However, there are policies that exclude dog bites, and those that provide inadequate limits for the victim. Three solutions are available for dog owners who are uninsured or inadequately insured: umbrella coverage, excess coverage, and canine liability policies, otherwise known as dog bite insurance.


An umbrella policy provides liability coverage for injuries, damages and losses that are not covered by a person’s primary insurance (i.e., an umbrella would cover a dog bite that is not covered by the dog owner’s homeowner policy). An excess policy provides a higher policy limit for losses that are covered by the primary insurance, and a canine liability policy is a policy written specifically for dog owners for the purpose of insuring dogs or people who, for one reason or another, cannot obtain any other coverage for injuries, damages and losses caused by their dog.


An umbrella policy solution for dog owners


Having homeowner or renters insurance that does not cover canine inflicted injures can be a major issue. A knowledgeable insurance agent can inform pet owners how to go about purchasing a “personal umbrella liability policy.” It is a form of umbrella liability insurance for individuals and their families. It provides coverage for excess liability over underlying liability coverage, and some of the liability exposures excluded by underlying policies, which might include canine liability.


The important thing is to purchase insurance before an unfortunate incident occurs. Dogs often bite people within the confines of their own home. Victims, in many cases, are friends or relatives, and the animal may even be familiar with its victim. Also, pet owners should ascertain that the umbrella policy under consideration does not exclude canine inflicted injuries. Those unable to secure umbrella insurance may actually be better off purchasing a policy for canine liability. Dog owner liability, or dog bite standalone insurance, is also available from several brokers and companies operating in the US. Speak to an agent today about questions or concerns.


photo credit: carterse cc