How soon can you claim on pet insurance?

5th February 2019by Joanna White

As a pet owner, it is your responsibility to ensure that they’re well looked after with regards to being properly fed, watered, nurtured and cared for as well as ensuring their health is well-maintained.

One way to take the stress of worrying about looking after your pet’s health is to invest in a suitable pet insurance plan so you can rest-assured that they’ll be looked after in an accident or medical emergency.

If you do need to make a claim, you may be wondering how soon can you claim on pet insurance? Find out all the relevant details in this guide.

What you need to know - how soon can you claim on pet insurance?

Claiming on your pet insurance can be sometimes be a lengthy process, depending on many factors. Before you make a claim however, you need to be aware of what your policy does and does not cover.

What your policy should cover

  • Cost of vet bills for treatment due to an accident or illness
  • Emergency treatment for your pet if you’re away on holiday
  • Loss or theft of your pet due to it being stolen or straying
  • Compensation for your pet if they pass away or need to undergo euthanasia
  • Liability cover if your pet causes damage to someone, their property or another animal

It’s important to bear in mind that very few pet insurance providers will provide cover if your pet suffers from a pre-existing medical condition. If you fail to disclose any pre-existing conditions that your pet suffers from, and then try and make a claim later down the line, you could find your policy being invalid.

Claiming on your pet insurance

How soon you can claim on your pet insurance usually depends on the specific insurance company, but you will very rarely find that you can claim straight away on your policy.

The only way that you can usually make a claim straight away is if you have a policy that’s equipped with immediate cover; and there are very few pet insurance providers who offer this kind of cover.

Generally, you will have to wait a minimum of 14 days (2 weeks) in order to make a claim on your pet insurance. This is because pet insurance is designed to cover illnesses and/or accidents that could occur in the future; therefore, if you try to claim immediately, your insurer will likely count it as a pre-existing condition.

Very few pet insurance providers will cover your pet for pre-existing conditions as it doesn’t seem financially viable for them to pay out for a claim for a condition that occurred before you even purchased the insurance policy.

Having said that, depending on your provider and the type of policy you have, you may be able to make a claim for an accident that your pet gets into 48 hours after your policy began.

Waiting period

There is most often a waiting period for pet insurance which prevents people from purchasing a pet insurance policy and then making a claim immediately for an illness that their pet already had.

It would suggest that you’d be making a fraudulent claim as when you first take out your pet insurance policy, you must disclaim whether your pet suffers from any pre-existing conditions. If you don’t disclose these pre-existing conditions, but then try to claim for them immediately, your pet insurer will deem you as fraudulent and untrustworthy and will be very unlikely to pay out.

The waiting period acts as a sort of barrier between when your policy starts and when you can first make a claim. Of course, each pet insurance provider will likely have their own rules and regulations when it comes to waiting periods, but you can usually expect to have to wait around 14 days before you can make a claim.

Conclusion – how soon can you claim on pet insurance?

How soon you can claim on your pet insurance really depends on your insurance provider’s personal policy regarding waiting times. You’ll usually be expected to wait a minimum of 14 days before making a claim on your policy, but that can sometimes be reduced to 48 hours if you’re claiming for an accident that your pet has suffered from as soon as your policy has begun.