When you decide to purchase pet insurance for your pet, one of the most important things for you to think about is what conditions, injuries or illnesses they have had before the start of cover under the policy and what conditions occur during an applicable waiting period.
The reason it is important for you to think about this is because Knose Pet Insurance, like most pet insurance policies, has an exclusion for Pre-existing Conditions, which means there is no cover for vet costs associated with the treatment of a Pre-existing Condition. And unlike private health insurance for humans, conditions that arose while being covered by one pet insurance provider is generally not covered by another provider, if you switch cover.
If Pre-existing Conditions exclusions didn’t exist, people could take out pet insurance or upgrade their cover only when they know or suspect that they might need cover, and then immediately make a claim. What’s more, these customers could then cancel (or downgrade) their cover after making a claim, only to repeat that cycle when new conditions arise. This would not only be unfair to other customers, but it would also contribute to increased premiums for all customers.
Knose’s Pet Insurance policy defines a Pre-existing Condition as follows:
Pre-existing Condition means an Injury, Illness, Dental Illness, Behavioural Problem or Specified Condition (including Bilateral Condition and other conditions that are related to, secondary to, or results of) that:
before Your Pet’s First Date of Cover, before a change of coverage became effective, or during any applicable Waiting Period.
There are three key parts to understanding Pre-existing Conditions.
Any condition can be a Pre-existing Condition, including those that we have specific definitions for. In addition, Pre-existing Conditions also include conditions that are:
There are three ways that a condition may be known:
Conditions will be Pre-existing Conditions when they are ‘known’:
At Knose we value transparency. It is very important to us that we are as clear and upfront as possible about the cover available under your policy, and we, therefore, offer a Pre-existing Condition assessment that can be completed after you purchase a policy for your pet to help you understand what we consider to be a Pre-existing Condition and therefore excluded from your cover.
In addition, we will also tell you whether any Pre-existing Conditions may be reviewed at a future date, the earliest future date you may request a review and any supporting information we will require at that time. Note that exclusions are not automatically lifted at the exclusion review date, and it will only be lifted if we are satisfied the medical evidence confirms the Pre-existing Condition has been successfully treated or resolved.
If a Pre-existing Condition is not reviewable, it will be permanently excluded from your cover.
If you decide not to get a Pre-existing Condition assessment completed straight after purchasing a policy, we will still do one at the time of your first claim based on a full assessment of your pet’s medical history. This will also include conditions contained in the medical history during an applicable waiting period.
While we put every effort into providing as much certainty as possible, the Pre-existing Condition assessment can only be completed based on the information available to us at the time. That means even if we haven’t listed a condition as a Pre-existing Condition, it may still be considered a Pre-existing Condition at a later stage if additional information becomes available. In that case, we may change what Pre-existing Conditions we list on your Certificate of Insurance.
For example, if your pet has a history of unexplained weight loss or appetite changes prior to the commencement of your policy and is subsequently diagnosed with a tumour or diabetes, this may be considered a Pre-existing Condition. Another example is, if your pet has symptoms of itchy skin or skin infection before your cover starts or during an applicable waiting period, which is subsequently diagnosed as an allergy, then the exclusion may be changed on your Certificate of Insurance to include associated ear allergies/infections as Pre-existing Conditions.
Also, if your pet has a symptom like diarrhoea before policy commencement or during a waiting period which then seems to be resolved and say, three months later it has another episode of diarrhoea, we may consider the two to be related if an underlying diagnosis is not reached or investigated.
Pet Insurance may provide peace of mind for the times when your pet needs treatment for an injury or an illness. With a range of cover options available, take the time to consider what cover suits your pet’s needs and your budget.