The cost of a dog biting you or someone in your family could be thousands of dollars. There will be medical care right after the attack, possibly followed by ongoing care.
The medical treatments that someone requires after a dog bite are far from the only financial consequences of the attack. Property damage is common when dogs attack, as clothing and even consumer electronics can suffer damage. When the victim requires counseling to overcome psychological trauma or when the attack leaves them with injuries that affect their income, they may have lasting expenses to consider.
Will insurance cover all of the costs caused when a dog attacks a person?
Different kinds of insurance may apply
As the victim of a dog bite or the parent of a child attacked by an animal, you may expect your health insurance to pay. When you consider how much you may have to contribute toward your deductible or in the form of co-pays after a dog attack, using your own health insurance may not be the best solution.
Instead, you may want to make a direct claim against the policy that covers the animal’s owner. Both homeowner’s insurance and renter’s insurance will frequently cover dog bite attacks. Even if you try to use your health insurance, your health insurance company will likely subrogate the claim by making their own claim against the homeowner’s or renter’s insurance of the animal’s owner.
Not only can you avoid the deductible and other patient responsibilities that way, but you can claim additional losses, like days off of work while you recover and property damage expenses.
Will insurance refuse to pay the claim?
There are a few scenarios in which a homeowner’s or renter’s insurance policy may not cover an animal attack. If the owner did not tell the insurance company about their pet, the company may not cover the owner. On the other hand, if the insurance company knew the animal was there but not that it was a certain breed, they may deny or limit what coverage they offer. Sometimes, the issue is not that insurance denied a claim but rather that coverage just isn’t high enough.
Those who need more than they can get through homeowner’s or renter’s insurance pay sometimes have to file a personal injury lawsuit. Knowing your rights for insurance coverage and compensation after a dog bites someone will make getting compensation for the attack a bit easier.