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Can I Cover Damages Caused by Pets with Home Insurance?

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Can I Cover Damages Caused By Pets With Home Insurance

Standard homeowners and renters insurance policies typically exclude pet damage caused by your own pet. However, the liability coverage that comes with your home insurance policy can cover the subsequent liability claims if your pet damages other people’s property. Similarly, you can seek compensation from other home insurance policyholders for pet damage. Here’s some more information on this topic.

What Type of Pet Damage Is Covered?

The three components of a standard homeowners insurance plan include:

  • Personal Property Coverage – This coverage protects your belongings. However, personal property coverage doesn’t cover damage to your personal belongings, such as your furniture or television, if your pet causes the damage. Therefore, if your cat scratches your expensive sofa or if your dog tears through your drywall, your insurance company won’t pay for the repairs.
  • Dwelling and Other Structures Coverage – Home insurance policies typically don’t cover damage caused by your domestic animals, pets, as well as rodents and insects. For instance, if your goat breaks your barn’s door or your dog rips through your wall, your policy won’t cover the associated repair costs.
  • Liability Coverage – Purchased with a homeowners or renters insurance plan, this policy covers third-party property damage. For instance, if your puppy rips up your friend’s expensive sofa or your horse tears down a neighbor’s fence, your liability coverage can pay for the replacements or repairs. Your liability coverage can also cover damage to other people’s property caused by your domestic animals, such as chicken, cow, goat, or pig. However, liability coverage only covers animals that are kept as pets; it doesn’t cover business farming.

Can Pets Be Excluded from Home Insurance?

Some pets may be excluded due to their risk profile. Certain types of domestic animals, usually exotic animals and some dog breeds, may not be covered or may only be eligible for limited coverage. If your dog is aggressive or has a history of biting people or other animals, you should talk to your insurance company about it. Dog-related injuries are a rising source of home insurance claims.

In 2020, insurers paid out $854 million for claims relating to dog-related injuries, up from 796.8 million paid in 2019 If you own a dog that poses a risk, you should ensure you have sufficient liability coverage. Most home insurance policies begin with liability coverage at $100,000. You should consider increasing the limit to match up your personal risks as well as assets.

Are Fish Tanks Covered by Home Insurance?

Most standard policies cover water damage, so your insurance company would likely protect you in case of water damage resulting from a broken fish tank. However, water damage is only covered if it isn’t a result of your negligence. Besides, the tank itself can be covered if it gets destroyed by a covered peril, such as fire.

How to File a Liability Insurance Claim for Pet Damage

If your pet injures someone or destroys their property, you should inform your insurer immediately. You should make sure that your insurer is aware in case you’re sued. If you don’t give your insurance company a timely notification, they may deny your claim, forcing you to pay for the damage out-of-pocket.

Whether you’re a homeowner or renter, at Reata Insurance Group, we can provide home insurance coverage that adequately protects your assets. We offer customized home insurance in Texas. Call us today for a home insurance policy that suits your needs and budget.

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