August 9, 2022

Volume XII, Number 221


August 08, 2022

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Dogs And Insurance, These Are A Few Of Our Favorite Things (Pictures Included!)

Pugs’ button noses and claim recognition
Broad coverage grants and puppies who listen
Insurance policies tied up with strings
These are a few of our favorite things

Earlier this year, New York passed a law addressing dogs and homeowners’ insurance. Some insurers selling homeowners’ insurance policies will decide whether and how to issue coverage based on the type of dog residing with the homeowners. For example, these kinds of dogs may result in lower premiums or more favorable terms than other dogs: [1]

On the other hand, these types of dog breeds may result in insurers refusing to sell homeowners’ insurance to the owners or issuing coverage with higher premiums or less favorable terms:

A New York law that went into effect earlier this year attempts to solve that disparate treatment of dogs. It prohibits insurers from refusing to insure homeowners based on the type of dog that the homeowner owns. The law states that for homeowners’ insurance policies, “no insurer shall refuse to issue or renew, cancel or charge or impose an increased premium or rate for such policy or contract based solely upon harboring or owning any dog of a specific breed or mixture of breed.” It has an exception for any breed designated as a “dangerous dog” under a separate part of New York law. A senior director of state legislation for the ASPCA: Eastern Division stated that the law removed an “arbitrary and discriminatory impediment for thousands of responsible New York dog owners.”


[1] These and some of the others are our very own Hunton insurance family dogs.

Copyright © 2022, Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP. All Rights Reserved.National Law Review, Volume XII, Number 179

About this Author

Patrick McDermott Insurance Litigation Richmond VA

Patrick counsels clients on all aspects of insurance and reinsurance coverage. He assists clients in obtaining appropriate coverage and represents clients in resolving disputes over coverage, including in litigation and arbitration.

During law school, Patrick served as a judicial intern for the Honorable Michael F. Urbanski in the US District Court for the Western District of Virginia and for the Honorable Ricardo M. Urbina of in US District Court for the District of Columbia.

Matthew J. Revis Attorney Insurance Litigation Hunton Law Firm Washington DC

Matt’s practice focuses on complex insurance litigation and advising policyholders in a variety of insurance coverage matters.

Matt provides comprehensive representation to policyholders in all types of complex insurance coverage issues. His practice prioritizes maximizing recovery for his clients’ recovery efforts involving claims for breach of contract and bad faith. Matt also counsels business entities considering alternative risk management strategies as well as clients seeking to minimize their risk exposure from large-scale event...