Are Your Dog's Actions Covered By Your Insurance?

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What if a contractor walks into your home and your dog takes a chunk of this worker’s leg? You’d hope that your homeowners insurance—the same coverage that your mortgage lender required you to take out before approving you for a loan—would cover any financial damages resulting from a lawsuit filed against you.

Unfortunately, your insurer might not cover your dog’s actions.

The Insurance Information Institute reports that many insurers don’t provide coverage for certain breeds of dogs that they consider dangerous. This often includes Rottweilers, Doberman Pinschers, Pit Bull Terriers, German Shepherds and even mixed breeds that have genetic traits from specific breeds. If you have one of these dogs and it bites a visitor to your home, your insurance provider might not provide you with any coverage at all.

This could be costly. The insurance institute reported that dog bites and other injuries caused by dogs tend to account for more than one-third of homeowners insurance liability claims each year. The institute reported that in 2016, homeowners faced 18,123 dog-bite-related claims with an average cost for each claim of $33,230.

My advice? Contact your homeowners insurance provider to make sure that your dog is covered.