Caveat Emptor

Out of 10

Up until recently I would have recommended VPI without hesitation. Now I recommend them with hesitation. I know that there are some people who try to falsify claims to get more money than they deserve, but it seems that insurers are now treating all clients with suspicion, and I have had a recent such episode with VPI. When applying to insure my pet, a condition was supposedly disclosed on my original application, a condition that my pet doesn't have nor do I have any knowledge of my pet having. It took me over 10 days to get this sorted, even though I had a vet and a veterinary technician who responded that they found no evidence of this condition on my pet, nor did they find any evidence of my pet ever having had this condition. Had it not been for a wonderful customer service representative supervisor, who took the time to escalate the issue and deal with it personally, I would have gone elsewhere. I really was reluctant to do that, though, because I've been with VPI for a total of 9 years and 4 dogs; better the devil one knows, eh? My advice to anyone is to shop around. VPI are a longstanding company, not a here-today-gone-tomorrow establishment. I've always found their customer service people to be excellent in demeanor, and I've never had problems submitting a claim or being reimbursed. The representative with whom I spent considerable time on this current application said that VPI were making their policies 'more transparent' in an effort to advise people exactly what would and would not be covered when applying for insurance. And that would be my advice. Come up with all the worst case scenarios, and ask the customer service representative if the condition would be covered. ("You've got an exclusion on my animal because he had a chronic ear infection last year; if he should injure that same ear will the vet bills for the injury be covered?" The insurance companies ask plenty of probing questions of us to see if it is worth them insuring our pets; we need to ask the same caliber of probing questions to them to see if they deserve our business.

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