One issue we deal with every day at Petplan is to help people to understand how pre-existing conditions work on a pet insurance policy. Reassuring them that even if their pet has a pre-existing condition there’s a good chance their pet is still eligible to get pet insurance.
What is a Pre-existing Condition?
A pre-existing condition is an illness or injury that happened before the policy started or within the twenty one day waiting period. Because insurance is designed to protect against unexpected things, pet insurance companies won’t cover anything that is pre-existing.
If the pet has a condition that neither you nor your veterinarian is aware of, then it is not a pre-existing condition. However, if the pet has shown clinical signs of the condition either prior to cover commencing, or within the waiting period, it is regarded as a pre-existing condition.
How do Pet Insurance Companies Handle Pre-existing Conditions
In general, pet insurance companies will exclude any condition that has shown clinical signs before the commencement of the policy, this includes illnesses that haven’t yet been diagnosed or are in remission. Applied exclusions are either temporary or permanent. With Petplan pet insurance, we will provide coverage for an illness or disorder that is not permanent or likely to reoccur, after an incident-free period of time has passed. The period will depend on the type of condition.
Unless you have a Petplan genuine ‘Covered for Life’ pet insurance policy, you may not have cover should your pet be unfortunate enough to suffer a chronic or re-occurring illness or condition. Some companies offer covered for life insurance but they are only guaranteeing to renew the pet’s insurance for life and may reset pre-existing conditions, so will not cover any on-going, chronic or recurring illness. That means that any illness that has been treated in the previous 12 months, will become an exclusion on renewal of the policy. This insurance cover is referred to as a ’12 month cover’. It is usually less expensive than a genuine ‘Covered for Life’ pet insurance policy that will cover chronic and re-occurring conditions as long as you continue to pay your premiums each year without a gap in cover
When researching pet insurance, you have to ask the company if it has a limit on the time you can claim for a condition or has a set amount you can claim for a re-occurring or chronic illness. Not what you expected from your pet insurance policy? This is why it is important to ask about time limits and set condition amounts.
PetplanPet Insurance Pre-existing Condition Guidelines
There are really two types of pre-existing conditions: those that will be cured or heal, like broken bones, and those that may never be cured, like Diabetes or chronic skin disease.
How Does PetplanPet Insurance Handle Pre-existing Conditions?
We distinguish between temporary and permanent conditions, just because your pet has a pre-existing condition of one sort or another, does not mean he can’t get pet insurance.
Temporary Pre-existing Conditions
Our philosophy on pre-existing conditions that will eventually heal is to place an exclusion for the condition temporarily. Depending on the condition it may only be for 3 or 6 months, or 1 to 2 years. During this period any treatment that is for the pre-existing condition will not be covered however, if your pet remains clear of this condition during the excluded period, the exclusion will be removed for the subsequent years.
Permanent Pre-existing Conditions
Pre-existing conditions that are not curable will be excluded permanently from your policy but coverage remains for any other conditions that the pet may get after the start of the policy. It is important to have a policy that will continue to pay claims to Treat Chronic Illnesses for the whole of the pet’s life!
We designed Petplan pet insurance with chronic conditions in mind. As long as you continue to renew you policy each year, without a gap in your cover, we will continue to pay claims for lifelong illnesses, you can rest easy knowing that you’re covered.