It's important to know what pet insurance is not.
For example, it is not the same as human health insurance. Pet insurance is primarily a reimbursement type insurance policy. This has the advantage that you can select the veterinarian you want. Since the pet insurance company reimburses you, the veterinarian really has no involvement in the insurance.
You take your pet to the veterinarian and have the desired service performed. Then you pay the veterinarian for the service. The next step is to fill out a claim form and submit the form and any other required documentation to your pet insurance provider. They will review the claim, if the service is covered by your policy, they will reimburse you the specified amount outlined in your policy.
Commonly, people become frustrated when a service is not covered. Often, this is due to pet owners not spending enough time carefully choosing a policy. Every policy has different deductibles, copays, exclusions and benefit limits. It is very important to understand what is and is not covered by your policy before you purchase it.
Some tips when looking for a pet insurance company:
- Research companies carefully, make sure you understand the coverage you are paying for. Ask about breed-specific exclusions.
- Call prospective companies before purchasing a policy and ask questions. If they are not helpful when you are a prospective customer, they likely will not be helpful once you are an actual customer.
- Before having a procedure performed on your pet, consider pre-certification.Talk with your vet and see if there is a different treatment that will be as effective and may be covered under your policy.
- If you want to save money on your policy premiums, consider a policy that just covers accidents/injuries.