Liability Insurance for Dog Owners
Liability claims for dog-related injuries have been on the rise in recent years, with an estimated 18,522 incidents in 2017, up 9.5 percent from 2003, according to data from the Insurance Information Institute and State Farm. The Insurance Information Institute’s Michael Barry says any application questions for homeowners’ insurance should be answered truthfully when it comes to dogs, including breed and claims history. Barry adds that if a loss occurs that is related to misinformation, the insurer may not be required to pay that claim.
Peter Kochenburger at the University of Connecticut School of Law says an insurer will likely have access to details of any prior dog-injury claims via third-party companies. A ValuePenguin.com analysis estimates that increasing liability coverage from $100,000 to $500,000 cost just 7 percent more per year — about $42 more for someone whose premium was $600 per year. Owners of restricted breeds or a dog that has a history of aggression should also consider a dog liability insurance policy.