I don't know any health insurance carriers that have special rates for eventers.
Health insurance rates are going to vary all over the board depending on your state location, your age, your gender, and the plan. There is no typical rate. Trying to compare one person's rates to another is not a worthwhile exercise.
It's major medical, mortality and surgical. $7500 limit per year with a $250 deductible. There are different rates for pleasure/show, etc horses. I have also made a number of claims on the 6 or so horses I've insured.
I have a $5k major med/surgical with Broadstone (which they transfer to Hiscox) for $190 with a deductible of $325. They also offer $7.5k for $240.
ETA: drawstraws makes a good point about the requirement for mortality. My policy has an annual premium for mortality which is 3.6% of insured horse value.
Also, vet travel fees (barn calls) are not included nor are things like chiro, acupuncture, routine maintenance joint injections, Adequan/Legend, and a list of other things that are voluntary or performance enhancing.
Last edited by xitmom; Sep. 22, 2011 at 08:35 AM.
Reason: Added detail
I've been really interested in getting some! I have my pets insured but not my horse. For those who have it and have used it (hope this isn't hijacking! If so let me know!) how well does it pay out? For instance, let's say ponykins is suddenly lame. They do x-rays and ultrasound. Think it's a tendon. Put her on meds. Then let's say 4 weeks later it's STILL a problem. They do further testing and want to do injections and let's say....stem cell therapy. Is this all covered? Trip charges, meds, treatment? My pet insurance only covers a certain amount for each kind of injury/problem. For instance ear problems only get $400. They'll cover up to that 100% ($50 deductible) but not over. A torn ligament is covered to $1800. This covers diagnosis and surgery, meds, etc. For the price you're paying how well does it pay out? And is it a "based on the issue" pricing like my pet insurance or just an all out "anything up to $X amount covered)?
"We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing."
Best way to compare is to get some quotes from 2-3 insurance carriers. It depends on the horse's age, value, activity and competition record, if the record helps support the value. And the level of medical coverage and deductible you want.
My understanding is that eventers are priced at the same as h/j/e show horses, up until T level. T level and up are at a different rates. An owner not telling the truth about this can end up having your claims denied and insurance cancelled just when you need it -- not of course that anyone would ever fudge the facts to an insurance company.
Getting a horse insured early in life will get into some better rates. Rates can go up with age, but it's a better experience if the animal has been continuously insured.
What other people are paying won't help you compare unless you know the horse's particulars, re first para. Have to compare apples to apples.
That said - below Training level eventers and general-purpose show horses, ages 6-15 (older ones if insured early and insurance kept,) est. value of horse $5k-$10k, coverage to $15k on major medical, low deductible ... I would expect to be between $600-$900 per year for major medical + mortality. Most insurance companies will bill yearly, monthly or quarterly. There will probably be a discount for annual billing.
I insure through Independent Equine Agents out of KY, 800-346-8880. They placed me with Great American. Have had excellent service over the past 6 years. Last January I had a larger claim and got the $1,100 check very, very fast - they even called to remind me to fax the vet bill to them. And they talked directly to the vet to understand just what was going on with the horse, I didn't have to be the go-between.
Oh and p.s. Smart vets LOVE horse insurance - LOVE it. People are willing to get more treatment and opt for what the horse really needs if they have coverage. Less discussion of what Pookie could do without and manage to live.
... For instance, let's say ponykins is suddenly lame. They do x-rays and ultrasound. Think it's a tendon. Put her on meds. Then let's say 4 weeks later it's STILL a problem. They do further testing and want to do injections and let's say....stem cell therapy. Is this all covered? Trip charges, meds, treatment? ...
Had something similar last year with a suspensory ligament. Didn't seem serious, but didn't respond to initial treatment. Ended up with about 4-5 vet visits to the farm to be sure we were on the right track, 2 ultrasounds, this & that, but finally the ligament was healing and about 8 weeks later all was good.
Insurance company took all the vet bills - there were several - from the time of the initial vet visit/diagnosis, and looked at all the itemized charges. They took out a couple of unrelated things, subtracted the deductible, and sent me a check for the rest. All I did was send all the bills, I did not do any further work other than reviewing what they paid and what they didn't, which I agreed with.
Getting the claim paid was painless. Wrapping/poulticing/dealing with irritated horse who resents stall rest was not.
(Independent Equine Agents out of KY 800-346-8880 and Great American.)
In all fairness, the OP edited her post to specify it was MM for horses only after I replied.
But the gist of my comment applies all the same. Major medical can only be purchased as an endorsement to a mortality policy. There is no stand-alone major medical. The cost of any endorsement has to be considered along with the cost of the underlying mortality policy. While nearly all mortality policies are identical in coverage, there is some variation in rates. More importantly, there is a significant variation in how the major medical endorsement is offered -- deductibles, co-pays, coverage sublimits, and coverage exclusions apply. Premium pricing can also vary by state and use of horse, among other things.
I would not use COST as a major determinant in buying a mortality/major medical policy. The cheapest plan around probably has limited coverage. If that plan suits your risk profile, then great. But more importantly, know what your risk tolerance is and buy according to your individual need. It really doesn't matter what others pay for coverage.
$575/yr for $6000 mortality and $10000 major medical. Deductible is $250. I use Great American. I chose them because even though my horse is only insured for $6k, they will pay up to $10k for a major medical claim. Some companies "total" your horse and will only pay out for major medical up to whatever the horse is insured for mortality.
I claimed my horses ulcer scoping/treatment (total of $1700) this year and it was a super easy process. I got a cheque for the $1450 reimbursement a week after my vet submitted the final report.
My horse is insured for $15,000 mortality and $7500 M/M with an added colic. My premium is about $800 per year and has been for several years. I have not increased his coverage since owning him but have switched ins. companies. As Ironwood mentioned what one might pay in MM is really of no consequence as it's the mortality amount that the premium is primarily based on. I could have the same MM coverage as a person who insures their horse for $5,000 and their premium is going to be considerably less than mine. the other thing to keep in mind is that MM is not like health insurance for humans - you shouldn't go submitted claims for this and that as you might end up with exclusions.
Best to call around, check & compare prices and coverage
The other thing I am wondering about, and Chizzle thouched on it, is that MM is more like your auto ins. and one wouldn't want to use it often, only for a major medical incident? Or do you use your MM everytime you have a significant vet bill?
I've never put in a claim on my auto policy, knock on wood, because I don't want them to raise my rates.
Chris Misita www.hiddenvalleyfarms.net Home of Bravo and Warrick!
To dare; progress comes at this price. All sublime conquests are, more or less, the rewards of daring.
misita- I would put any claim in on MM that is significantly more ($100+) than my deductible. The only downside to that is that the particular ailment will probably get excluded from your policy next year.
That information makes me want to get Willa insured for sure! I've had a few bad experiences with my pets medical and the "limits" per problem. For instance I got a kitten who at 13 weeks was suddenly presenting neurological and in bad shape. Raced to the vets and they did exam, xrays, bloodwork...no clue! Drove 3 hours straight to the UW hospital where they performed CT Scan and other testing. Bill is $2000 at this point and now they say kitty has a rare double ear polyp condition and needs a risky $4000 surgery. Call insurance to see what they will cover. Explain in detail and their answer was "We can't give quotes unless the problem is specifically listed in your quotes book.". My response "It's not listed but I need to know if this is considered an ear infection, which it is not, which maxes out at $400 or a surgical tumor condition which maxes out at $3000! I can't afford to pay $6000 but could swing $3000 and I need this information to decide whether to go forward with the surgery or put kitten down!" Go back and forth for an hour and they will not tell me at ALL how much may be covered. Do surgery
and submit claim. Since problem is so rare they claim it's an ear infection (which it is NOT! It was a ear tumor he was born with) and pay me $400 towards my $6000 bill. Ugh. Vets and I spent 3 long months fighting them and they finally agreed to cover $3000. I would much prefer a "this is what you have a year do what you want with it" type policy. I'll be getting quotes from these companies recommended right away!
"We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing."
Unlike your auto policy, reporting a covered claim under the major medical endorsement of the mortality policy is NOT optional. Read the policy language carefully as I have yet to see one that didn't require that you make a timely report of ANY non-routine veterinary treatment of a covered equine. I have reported plenty of what we call "zero dollar claims" because it is required. Selective reporting is risky because if the carrier finds out, the carrier can cancel the entire policy. In fairness to the carrier, any "zero dollar claim" reported never resulted in a rate increase or an exclusion for me. I do understand that some people don't report potential claims. They are playing a dangerous game with their coverage IMO.
My understanding is that eventers are priced at the same as h/j/e show horses, up until T level. T level and up are at a different rates.
Be careful about these kinds of generalizations.
I called around to a bunch of carriers when I was insuring my horse to see who had the coverage I wanted for the best price. I came across multiplle methods for determing the rate: one distinguished between jumping and flat horses and for the jumping horses basing on the height jumped and at least one not only parsed out event horses with their own rate but I believe it went up for the higher levels of eventing.
The rate will also vary based on what is covered- not all policies are created equal in terms of what they pay.
And as IHF says- reporting serious injuries is not optional (at least not in any policy I have seen). They don't want you to report every stone bruise but you risk voiding the whole policy if you choose not to report something that you should have. I have never had a rate increase as a result of either a non-claim (reported but not collected because did not exceed deductible) or a claim for which a signifcant pay out was made (although there have been exclusions) but that may just be my carrier.
There is something about the outside of a horse that is good for the inside of a man.(Churchill)