Aviva will offer three levels of pet insurance cover to choose from so consumers can select the cover limits that best suit their needs
Aviva is to underwrite its own pet insurance from 1 August 2012, in a move that will see the insurer position itself to gain market share from the estimated 15 million cat and dog owners. With vet bills rising, and the country suffering from banking crisis, more consumers are considering protecting their pets welfare through pet insurance.
Simon Warsop, business development director at Aviva, said: “For many of us, our pets are ‘one of the family’. However, in the current climate, affording medical treatment for your pet is an extra worry that most of us could do without. Pet insurance offers peace of mind to those who are concerned about the welfare of their pet and want to ensure that should their cat or dog need medical treatment, they can do what’s best for them.”
“Aviva has been selling pet insurance for years. And with 14 million customers in the UK who trust us with their car, home and life insurance, we felt it was right to underwrite pet insurance ourselves, recognising the concern millions of pet owners have over medical costs for their pet.”
Mr Warsop continued: “We know that pet owners worry about finding policies that will cover recurring medical conditions. So, for existing customers with Aviva and new customers from their first renewal, their cat or dog will continue to be insured for the cost of vet’s fees for treatment of illness and injury for as long as the policy is renewed – no matter what age he or she reaches.”
Pet insurance from Aviva will offer three levels of cover to choose from so customers can select the cover limits that best suit their needs. Cover starts from £5.50 a month – female medium mongrel aged less than one, based in Norwich – with no upper age limit for vet fees. You must ensure your pet receives regular annual check ups and the required annual vaccinations. If you do not do so, Aviva won’t cover any claims.
Pet owners can get up to 10% off when buying online via the insurers website. Aviva also offers an additional 10% discount for insuring more than one pet. Existing customers will be advised that on renewal, they have the option to continue their cover with Aviva as the underwriter.
Breakdown of cover elements for Silver, Gold and Platinum pet insurance
The Silver policy offers cover against:
- Veterinary fees
- Pets taken ill abroad
- Third party liability
- Cremation/burial costs
- Behavioural problems
In addition to the Silver cover, the Gold policy offers:
- The cost to recover stolen or straying pets – including local advertising and the cost of a suitable reward
- Kennel fees should the policy holder be hospitalised
- £1,000 holiday cancellation should they have to cancel or cut short a holiday due to a pet-related illness
- Death from illness or accident
The Platinum policy is Aviva’s premium pet insurance policy, which provides increased limits to those of the Gold policy for death from illness, death from accident, recovery costs and theft. In addition, there are increased limits for holiday cancellation and veterinary fees:
- Up to £2,000 for holiday cancellation
- Up to £6,500 per year on veterinary fees
For pets that are 7 years of age or over, Aviva will pay a maximum of 85% of each claim for vet fees, with the remaining 15% contribution must be paid by the policyholder; this is in addition to any excess that may apply.
You submit a claim for £500 Aviva will make a deduction of £75 for the excess which leaves £425 balance remaining. Aviva will pay 85% (£361.25) towards the claim; the remainder (£138.75) is the excess plus the 15% contribution which must be paid by the policyholder.
If your pet reaches 7 years of age part way through the period of insurance, your contribution will be applied from the start of the next period of insurance where your schedule shows your pet to be 7 years old.
All policies also provide support helplines to assist with; 24-hour bereavement counselling, 24-hour pet legal advice and healthcare away from home. Additionally, policy holders can access a pet minder service, enabling them to locate a nationally registered dog minder who can look after their dog for a few hours or even a few weeks if they go away.