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cost-effective equine insurance

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  • #21
    Regardless of which insurance company you choose, make sure you know your policy inside and out! Is your horse insured for "agreed value" or "actual cash value" (fair market value)?

    With agreed value, if your horse is insured for $10,000 and your horse dies, the insurance company will pay out $10,000, as long as there is proof of value. With actual cash value, you may be paying premiums on a $10,000 valuation for 5 years, but if your horse dies, the insurance company will only pay out what your horse is worth at the time of death, which is also known as fair market value. If the economy crashes, your horse was laid up with an injury at the time of death, etc., and the fair market value is only $4,000, that is unfortunately all you will get.

    Most horse owners are under the impression that if they insured their horse for $10,000 and they have paid their premiums every year that they will get $10,000 if their horse dies. Unfortunately, no always true!

    As well as knowing your policy inside and out, make sure to keep good records on your insured horses - including pictures, video and show records....and remember to continue to update them! We have done several very tough equine appraisal cases in which the owner did not have a single photo or video of their insured horse(s) that passed away, no show record, nothing....which makes it extremely tough to prove their value! And, if you feel the insurance company is giving you the run around, and you truly believe your horse is worth more, get your own independent Equine Appraisal done and present it to the insurance company. We do a lot of these...and it does work!

    I have other tips and tricks on our website at www.equineappraisers.com
    Home of Welsh Cob stallion Goldhills Brandysnap
    Also home to Daventry Equine Appraisals & Equine Expert Witness


    • Original Poster

      Originally posted by Jamie.S View Post
      $1000/year is pretty close to normall
      That's what I'm realizing now- I've requested quotes from Hallmark, EMO and Broadstone/the Hartford. All pretty much the same- I should have probably been expecting this based on the rate I paid last year...

      Originally posted by J-Lu View Post
      Look into Diamond State Insurance Co. They insure horses for 10K or 7.5K mortality plus major medical. Rate is 2.9%, so 10K plus major medical/surgical plan is 290 + 275 = $565/year. $300/year deductable.
      Is the 2.9% rate for all horses/uses? Or just dressage? I had my mare insured at a 2.9% rate with GAIG last year b/c she was only doing flatwork but now that I'm planning on jumping her in the next year my rate is going to go up.

      Also- who did you buy Diamond State through? Based on other posts it looks like they sell through Hallmark but I requested a quote from Hallmark and it came from AEIG, not Diamond State. Do you have to specifically request which company you want a quote from?

      Originally posted by ArbGrl View Post
      I just switched from Great American to EquiSure, they will still insure at $10K and their rates were reasonable.
      How was their customer service? Did you ever have to make a claim and if so, how were they to deal with?


      • #23
        Is the 2.9% rate for all horses/uses?
        I think the rate for my eventers (when I used to insure) was closer to 4%, and when I insured my 18 year old mare doing Prelim it was a whole lot more. I doubt I could find anyone to insure a horse that age nowadays.

        My premium dollars are now sitting in the bank.
        Click here before you buy.


        • #24
          I insured my horses for several years, after I had a horse that racked up nearly a $20k colic surgery bill. I spent about $9,000+ (it hurts to write that) to ensure 3 horses for 6 years, only had one chance to make a claim (thankfully), for a low-dollar surgery, which was denied. That doesn't include the cost for vet inspections every year. I dropped it because it didn't make any sense for me, at all. After all of that time and one claim on one horses, and exclusions piling up and the premium going up due to age....it was ridiculous.
          I do know two people who have really done well with insurance in the last couple of years, getting tip-top-of-the-line care for lameness issues, that they otherwise wouldn't have been able to afford, due to insurance. It's a gamble. I think self-insurance is smarter.

          Edit: FWIW, I had their insurance through Markel.
          Last edited by CrowneDragon; Apr. 21, 2013, 01:07 PM.
          As Peter, Paul, and Mary say, a dragon lives forever.


          • #25
            Originally posted by Goldilox View Post
            Also- who did you buy Diamond State through? Based on other posts it looks like they sell through Hallmark but I requested a quote from Hallmark and it came from AEIG, not Diamond State. Do you have to specifically request which company you want a quote from?
            Diamond State and AEIG are the same entity. Or, rather, AEIG is noted as the administrator of the Diamond State program on the documents I've seen. Regardless of the relationship, AEIG = Diamond State, at least in this case. Hallmark and Blue Bridle both sell their policy.

            Equisure will not give you more major medical than mortality, if that's what you're looking for. Their underwriter is Chartis.


            • #26
              I've used Nicholson Insurance Agency for years. They are an agency that deals with multiple underwriters and works hard to get the best coverage for the best price for their clients. When I worked for them in an administrative capacity, I learned a lot about the industry and how it works. Yes there are different rates for different uses - a dressage horse is going to have a lower rate than an eventer. A broodmare is going to have a different rate from one company to another. Having an agent that works for you is the best way to find the best deal.

              And as for cost effective? Well, I've got one at Rood & Riddle right now that I wish I'd have been a little quicker on the draw on. I dawdled getting coverage because "I couldn't justify the expense right now"... Well, I can guarantee you that the $1000 or less I'd have spent on coverage is way less than the bill that is currently climbing as I type this. I just insured the rest of mine, and am making payments on their coverage as I can't afford not to.

              (And while I'm sure they exist, I've never seen an "actual cash value" policy for an equine. I've only ever seen or dealt with Agreed Value policies - even while working at the agency)
              Not all who wander are lost.


              • #27
                I've had better experience than many on this thread. When I lost my horse to a pasture accident, the vet on the scene did a very brief necropsy (opened up the joint where the break was to document it), and I received full insured value despite the fact that he had not been competed in quite some time due to injuries.
                I have also had very modest exclusions, and had no trouble reinsuring my 18 y.o, this year, even though he had a suspensory last year...

                I prefer paying the premium and having the support in case of big problems. I love having years when I lose money to the insurance company. Plus I would never have been able to replace the horse I lost had he not been insured.

                Really about your own preferences...
                The big man -- my lost prince

                The little brother, now my main man


                • #28
                  Try Kaplow. I got a pretty good rate when my other insurance premium went way up.


                  • #29
                    Does anyone know if insurance policy's require you to inform the insurance company when your horse(s) are moved to another boarding stable?

                    I know all policy's are different but I was wondering if any require this.