pet insurance and pre-existing conditions
Pets with a pre-existing condition are still eligible to enroll in pet insurance and get coverage for other accidents and illnesses, and a specific condition shouldn’t stop you from considering coverage.
what is a pre-existing condition?
Pet insurance plans usually do not cover pre-existing conditions. These are injuries or illnesses that come up or show symptoms before your plan goes into effect or during a waiting period.
Pre-existing conditions are any health conditions that first occur or show symptoms before coverage starts or during a waiting period. It doesn’t mean you can’t enroll your pet and get coverage for other accidents and illnesses; it just means your plan won’t cover costs that directly relate to any ailment your pet has in their medical history or has shown signs of before your coverage starts or during a waiting period.
Examples of Pre-existing Conditions
- If you purchased home insurance today, you would not be able to get reimbursed for repairs due to a flood that happened a few months ago.
- If your dog tumbled down the steps and fractured a paw before you enrolled in pet insurance, expenses for X-rays and other treatments related to the break would not be covered. Also, future related expenses for the same condition would not be covered unless the condition becomes eligible for coverage as a cured condition.
Pet insurance providers may define and handle pre-existing conditions differently. Please read the policy carefully so you know what to expect.
why aren't they covered?
Insurance is generally intended to protect you for things that might happen in the future, not the past.
When you think about the purpose of most insurance, it makes sense that pre-existing conditions typically aren’t covered by pet insurance. With an ASPCA® Pet Health Insurance Plan, the policy states that a condition will no longer be considered pre-existing if it’s curable, cured, and free of symptoms and treatments for 180 days, with the exception of knee and ligament conditions. If a knee or ligament condition occurs before the coverage effective date or during a waiting period, any future ones won’t be covered.
FAQs frequently asked questions about pre-existing conditions
Conditions that have not been diagnosed or treated yet can still be considered pre-existing. For instance, say your dog starts limping in March before you sign up for pet insurance. You take your dog to the veterinarian, but they are not sure what’s causing your pooch’s problem. If you enroll in pet insurance in April, and your dog starts limping again, then any necessary future treatments related to this issue will not be covered, because symptoms occurred before the plan went into effect.
Pre-existing conditions should not stop you from considering coverage, as pets with pre-existing conditions are still eligible for pet insurance. While you may not be able to get reimbursed for treatments related to that particular condition, you can still receive payouts for future injuries or illnesses. Complete CoverageSM also covers congenital and hereditary conditions, alternative therapies, and behavioral conditions. In addition, your pet’s pre-existing condition may be covered in the future, depending on your plan.
Pet insurance providers may define and handle pre-existing conditions differently, so it really depends on the plan. Our policy states that a condition will no longer be considered pre-existing if it’s curable, cured, and free of symptoms and treatments for 180 days, except for knee and ligament conditions. If a knee or ligament condition occurs before the coverage effective date or during a waiting period, any knee or ligament condition that occurs in the future will not be covered either. So, if your cat had an upper respiratory infection (URI) when you enrolled, treatment for it would not be covered. However, if your cat came down with another URI 180 days after the first one was cured and treatment free, it would be eligible for coverage.
There’s no way to guarantee that your pet won’t have a pre-existing condition. Still, it can help to enroll in a pet insurance plan sooner rather than later. Our curious, energetic, and playful pets can get injured when you least expect it or get sick out of the blue. The longer you put off enrolling, the more time there is when something could happen to your pet. That injury or illness would then be considered a pre-existing condition and not eligible for coverage.
Pets with a pre-existing condition are still eligible for pet insurance and that condition should not stop you from considering coverage. While you may not be able to get reimbursed for treatments related to that particular condition, you can receive payouts for future injuries or illnesses. Complete CoverageSM also covers congenital and hereditary conditions, behavioral issues, and alternative therapies used for covered conditions. In addition, the pre-existing condition may be covered in the future depending on your plan.
Past wellness treatments are similar to pre-existing conditions in that they are not covered. For instance, if your pet had an annual exam along with vaccines and a dental cleaning a few weeks before you enrolled, these services would not be covered.
However, there is no waiting period for our preventive care coverage. It starts as soon as your plan takes effect. That means you can enroll in this coverage on Monday, take your pet in for their annual check-up on Tuesday, and get reimbursed for covered services.
It’s easy to enroll in preventive care coverage. Simply get a free quote and choose your base plan. Then you will be able to add it to your plan at a low additional cost. We have two preventive care coverage options, which have different lists of covered services and payouts. There is no deductible or reimbursement percentage with this coverage.
still have questions about pre-existing conditions?
You can review a sample policy to see all of the details related to our coverage. Our friendly representatives can also answer any questions or help you choose a plan and customize it to fit your budget and coverage needs. They are available at 1-888-716-1203 during the following hours:
Monday to Friday between 8:00 am and 8:00 pm EST
If you call after hours, you can leave us a message and we will return your call as soon as possible.
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