Dog Owner Liability Insurance

Dog Owner Liability Insurance - What Is Dog Owner Liability Insurance?

Most companies now offer dog owner liability insurance as part of their standard policies along with essential covers such as the ones for vet fees and boarding fees. It is worth learning more about this type of insurance and how it works so that you can decide whether it will be useful to you as a pet owner. Provided that you are well informed, you will certainly make the best decision for you and for your four-legged companion.

How does dog owner liability insurance work?

As the owner of the pet you are legally liable for its actions. If your dog is involved in any sort of accident and it is found responsible for causing bodily injury or property damage to a member of the public, you will be liable to prosecution and claims for compensation. It does not matter whether your dog caused the injury and/or damage intentionally or unintentionally.

Dog owner liability insurance is designed to help you pay in case any claims for financial compensation are made against you. If a court of law finds you legally liable for the accident and for the injury and/or damage caused, you will be required to compensate the other party. The ruled compensation may be quite large and difficult to cover. The insurer will pay the compensation amount up to the limit on your policy minus an excess fee.

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Is it worth it?

You may be asking yourself whether dog owner liability insurance is useful especially if you have a well-behaved pet that does not go out of the house much. Firstly, all kinds of accidents can happen and some of them are literally unthinkable for the average canine pet owner. Imagine what will happen if your dog is scared off by a bigger animal and suddenly runs on the street. Cars may collide in order to avoid hitting it. The vehicles may get damaged while the passengers can get hurt. What if your big dog runs by a visitor in your home and they lose balance, fall and end up with a back injury? You will have to compensate the person.

Another reason why taking out dog owner liability insurance makes sense is that more and more people are making claims for compensation if they think a dog is responsible for their injury or for damage to their property. Statistical data shows that the amount of compensation paid by the insurers to individuals making claims against dog owners has increased 5 times for the past ten years. This comes to suggest that people require more money in order to get compensated apart from making claims more frequently.

It can be safely said that you will get very good financial protection as a pet owner, if you go for such a policy.

Are there exclusions to dog owner liability insurance?

In general, all sorts of accidents will be covered. The insurer will pay for any kind of bodily injury and even death. They will cover all types of property damage including damage to moving vehicles. Still, it is essential for you to check the policy which you have chosen for any exclusions and limitations just to be on the safe side.

Can all dogs be covered with dog owner liability insurance?

No, some breeds are not eligible for this type of cover. These include the breeds from the Dangerous Dogs Act. The insurer may refuse to cover other canines as well. For this reason, you should check their list of exclusions before you get a quote so that you do not waste time and effort.

You will be able to find dog owner liability insurance specifically tailored for working dogs. It works in the same way as the one for pets. However, it is available only as part of products specifically designed for canines which work.

How much cover can you buy?

The typical dog owner liability insurance provides cover for at least £1 million. You can buy cover for as much as £3 million or even more. For working dogs and security guard ones, in particular, the amount may reach £5 million. You can make a claim per accident up to the set maximum amount on your policy.

It is up to you to decide how much cover you need. It is a good idea to go over records of past claims to find out how much compensation people usually require. Consider the behaviour, discipline, size and lifestyle of your pet as well in order to make an adequate decision.

How much does dog owner liability insurance cost?

The premiums are quite affordable for the average pet owner. Still, your premium will depend on your pet's breed and age and on your location. Most often, the deductible on this type of insurance is fixed. It is not based on individual factors. It typically ranges from £100 to £250, but it may be bigger if you buy a larger amount of coverage.

You will certainly have peace of mind with dog owner liability insurance. It will not cost much and you will know that if your pet is blamed for an accident and you are found legally liable, you will not have to pay the compensation out of your pocket.