Insurance 101 with Mike King - Protect Yourself & Your Horse

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Protect Yourself & Your Horse

Horse insurance provides coverage to protect an owner against the possibility of losing a horse to a long list of causes, any of which could leave you in financial distress. Too often unexpected incidents or medical emergencies arise. Without insurance you may not have the financial resources immediately available to provide care for your horse, which could cause your beloved to suffer or die unnecessarily. Horse insurance provides an affordable way for you to protect both your horse and the investment you have made in the animal itself, which can be substantial. Horse insurance is a highly specialized insurance product available exclusively through a few select brokers in Canada including Intercity Insurance Services Inc.

Our ‘Equi-Care’ program offers two basic configurations. The first is called Mortality, which is the foundation of the insurance policy, which provides life insurance on your horse. Mortality insurance is available under two basic coverage types:

1. Named/Specified Perils - insures the life of the horse, but only for death arising from a “named” or “specified” list of perils that are detailed in the policy wording. Named/Specified Perils covers losses from such causes as Fire, Lightning, Collapse of a Building, Transport, Entrapment, Drowning, Impact by a Vehicle (escape) and others. Named/Specified Perils DOES NOT COVER DEATH ARISING FROM SICKNESS. Horses aged 30 days or older are eligible for Named/Specified Perils coverage (no maximum age). Specified Perils policies do not provide coverage if the horse dies from sickness and because of this exclusion they are very inexpensive.

2. FULL Mortality - means that the life of the horse will be insured against death arising from ANY accident or ANY sickness including humane destruction by a Veterinarian. Full Mortality coverage is available for horses aged between 30 days and 17 years. The premium rate for Full Mortality coverage is calculated and charged as a % of the insured amount. Full Mortality coverage includes all of the Named/Specified Perils. As you might expect, Full Mortality insurance is more expensive than Specified Perils, but at this point in time, is still priced within the budget of most equestrians

The Major Medical option can be added to a qualifying policy to provide coverage if you incur emergency veterinarian expenses for a life or health threatening situation, including surgical and non-surgical procedures. Major Medical does not cover incidental and routine vet expenses (inoculations etc.) and is subject to a deductible amount per incident. This optional coverage typically provides an occurrence limit of $5,000.00 or an occurrence limit $10,000.00. It is also worth mentioning that the Major Medical Extension cannot be purchased as stand alone coverage under any circumstances.

Beyond the horse itself, some programs (ours included) offer extensions for tack and equipment, trailer (physical damage ONLY), and Air Trip Transit/World Wide Berserk – whereby if you are importing a horse from abroad, you can cover the horse anywhere in the world AND while in transit by airplane (all of which can be added by endorsement to your existing horse insurance policy).

The cost of insurance is minimal compared to the overall costs of maintaining a horse. It will probably cost you more to take your horse to one show a year or board it for even one month than the cost of your insurance. Horse insurance is a sound investment and is no longer exclusively for expensive, high performance competition horses. All horse owners can find ways to economically protect themselves. The best advice is to talk with a broker who has experience in this type of coverage. There are many strategies that can be used to protect you, your horse and your investment.

As always, Mike can be reached through this website or

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Comment by Mike King on February 18, 2010 at 3:53pm

Those are all very good questions, our next Blog which will be posted on Monday will address the way in which 'value' can be determined for insurance purposes.
Comment by Katherine on February 16, 2010 at 9:49am
Is it based on the price you paid for the horse, what the replacement cost might be, or another figure?

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