Unfair and inconsistent

Out of 10

I have 2 dogs. last year Petplan did a pre-policy for one who has Lipoma. They had “Tumours, cancers and associated conditions” as an exclusion.. I was concerned because lipoma is only a subset of tumour. So, they attached a letter stating they'll review claims submitted to determine if they're related to the existing Lipoma. This was fair. This year, for my other dog, in her history she had “arthritic changes on her spine” long ago. Even though my dog has been increasingly active for the past YEAR after hypothyroid treatment (so “arthritis” didn't actually affect her but was a coincidental finding, as the Vet says), and she has no symptoms of arthritis, the underwriter refused to speak to my Vet to get the information, or to include a letter like before. They insisted on Arthritis as an exclusion. They told Customer Service they've spoken to my Vet 4 times, but if they did, my Vet would have remembered. Their Customer Service sounded so helpful and friendly and agreed on everything, but they have no idea what's really going on and they have no authority to make any decisions; they always asked me to speak to my Vet; I did, but in the end, they just said that they understood but there's nothing they could do. They think Underwriters POSSIBLY have spoken to my vet, although they saw no record of the conversation. But they couldn’t find out because the Underwriters said they did! For God’s sakes – and this was their CS Supervisor! The Underwriters are of course totally unapproachable. They're in the clouds somewhere, you can never speak to them directly but they make all the decisions!!! With companies like this, you'd feel your voice never get heard. I've emailed them again and again, and they keep emailing me back with the same exclusion with absolutely no explanations why they treated the same kind of problem one way (fairly) a year ago and another way this year. The worst is the Bureaucracy. Beware, don't get sucked in.

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Posted: 07/31/2008

To be fair, there is a difference between arthritis and a lipoma. I am not very happy with Petplan either, but a lipoma is just a lump of fat, it does not get worse over time, and has very little relationship to cancer. Arthritis is a degenerative condition. It gets worse over time. You can have severe arthritis without ever having symptoms, but it can cause all kinds of problems at any time. It's like the ocean wearing away at a cliff. The cliff can stand for centuries, until one grain of sand washes off and it collapses. What happened to you is that they found a pre-existing condition before your dog had symptoms. While I know it seems unfair I don't know of any insurance company that would not do the same thing.