VPI is OK --- consumers need to educate themselves

6
Out of 10

I've had a VPI policy for about 7 years and recently had to submit a claim for the 1st time. Submitting the claim was easy and they paid within about 2 weeks. I ended up getting about $3,000 of my $6,000 vet bills back. Here are my thoughts - 1. I would have liked to get more than just 50% back from VPI. But I chose VPI and I chose a system that deals with standard and customary fees. I chose a certain vet to do the surgery and it's an expensive vet (Alameda East of Emergency Vets fames). I could have shopped around, but I chose not to. 2. As consumers, we are responsible for doing research and understanding the rules. I think VPI was very upfront about what they do and don't cover - I hope nobody out there signed up without reading the exclusions list or the reimbursement schedule. Don't shift the blame to VPI. It's your responsibility to take the time to understand what you are paying for and ask questions if you don't understand. 3. Do I wish I had a different insurance for my dog when this all happened? Yes, because I would have received an 80% reimbursement instead of 50%. So as a consumer, I will cancel my VPI policy and move to another company. But not before I read and understand all the rules. 4. Remember - just like human insurance companies - VPI is a for-profit company and their goal is to collect as much money as possible from consumers and give as little money as possible back when a claim is submitted. I am not saying it's "right" but it is what it is.

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Posted: 10/07/2011
By:  

Reimbursement schedules are a bad way to go. The real irony is that the scheduled allowance used by VPI is consistently much less than the procedures cost at a VCA clinic and these clinics promote the VPI plans! We have been with Healthy Paws Ins. for a year and have been reimbursed at the 90% rate of the actual invoice from the vet. The deductible was reasonable, you can choose your level of reimbursement and they process claims immediately! I would recommend Healthy Paws to anyone looking for pet insurance, and I did a lot of homework before choosing a plan!

Posted: 10/08/2011
By:  

VPI is a rip off. Dont take my word for it. Before you ever sign up for it, take the "Customary & Reasonable" chart to your vet. For that matter take it to your 10 closest vets.The average consumer is not going to be able to read the VPI Customary and Reasonable chart and make any sense. Bring to your vet to see what they charge for a procedure and compare it to VPI Chart.
My defination of Customary and Reasonable: The normal cost of a proceedure you should see from your vet"
Go by that defination, and VPI is a cheat.
If your defination for Customary and Reasonable is: Take the normal vet would charge, than take 15 to 40% of that is what VPI would cover. * oh the more expensive the procedure, the lower % VPI customary and reasonable table covers.

So if you encounter a $4 to $5k vet bill, expect a reimbursement of $1,000 (or less) than VPI is for you.

For most people that would constitute supplementary insurance.

Posted: 04/30/2014
By:  

Very pleased with VPI. I have had no problems with them or the reimbursement. The experience has been wonderful and hassle free.

Posted: 01/20/2016
By:  

VPI is a terrible company that has no sense of compassion for the pets or their owners. In fact, I was just told by one of their employees that they consider my dog "property". They pay only $168 a year for epilepsy. That is crazy! A single injection of Phenobarbital given to stop a massive seizure at the emergency vet clinic cost over $300. Then add to this hospitalization, doctors fees, other medicines, and a variety of other costs totaling $1300+ I received under $300 and was told that this was the amount the deemed correct and if I didn't like it I could take my business elsewhere. PLEASE< TAKE YOUR BUSINESS ELSEWHERE! I understand "for profit" but that doesn't excuse predatory practices.

Posted: 03/08/2011
By:  

Our dog is almost 8 yrears old, and I took out VPI insurance, with the cancer rider as soon as we brought her home. Within the first year she has a very serious stomach ailment that resulted in major surgery. VPI came thru with flying colors! Then, 14 months ago, our dog was diaganosed with lymphoma carcinoma, which is non curable. VPI has paid 78% of all bills since that diagnosis. I could not be more pleased with their service and caring.

Posted: 03/08/2011
By:  

VPI is HORRIBLE. I would NEVER recommend them to anyone. I constantly had to fight for reimbursement and then they required me to have multiple unnecessary test to get one of my pets covered. I explained that the test would not come back in their "normal" range but that this was normal for my pet. I was assured this test being outside of normal would not cause my pet to be denied coverage. Well after spending 220.00 on the test and getting the results I expected I was denied coverage. I hope word gets out how crooked VPI is and that people go elsewhere with their business. I am now with Embrace and have not had ANY problems.

Posted: 05/03/2012
By:  

We have been very pleased with VPI. We did shop around for insurance when we first got our dog and found the rates to be comparable. We did like that there was no pressure to purchase, the people were extremely curteous and knowledgable. We now have been with VPI for two years and have had no trouble getting claims paid within a reasonable time. Only once was additional information required and the explanation on the forms made it easy to understand for us and the vetinarian to provide the required additional information.

Posted: 01/07/2014
By:  

Worst ever pet insurance company. Changed many years ago from another plan to VPI because they cover any condition your pet has for the life of the pet where the other one I had was just for the calendar year. The VPI benefit schedule requires you to play the game of "find the diagnosis/code that will pay out closest to what you expect to be covered" based on professional input from your vet otherwise they will shaft you every time. You have to spend a LOT of time making calls and trying to understand medical terminology and diagnoses so you can submit the right codes to benefit YOU not VPI. Over 15 years I would estimate I had to appeal 70% of the claims and of those they ended up paying out (the average payout was under 50%) many of them. Why should customers have to do battle on so many claims? The fact they finally paid out on many of these claims upon appeal supports the belief that they are hoping people won't take the time and energy to get what is due to the customer. This is deplorable. Who has the time to hound this company to cover what their policy states it does? Not to mention they put you in a Catch 22 frequently. Your vet says you need an MRI to diagnose something they suspect (which could be one of several things), then VPI waits to see if the diagnosis is not a coverable condition so they don't have to pay out on the MRI. They should pay for the diagnostics, then if according to their non-coverable conditions it is not covered then the TREATMENT may indeed not be covered but that is a completely different situation. Finally, with their payouts for primary and secondary conditions they get you coming and going - and always to their benefit. Run don't walk. Sorry to say many of these other companies have their own special policy circumstances such as having a deductible not for a year but per condition. Just another way to catch the customer unaware. Sure, you can dig and dig and read every little piece of fine print, but shouldn't customers reasonably expect insurance companies clearly and visibly declare some of the key elements of their policies? It's like a shell game with most insurance companies. No wonder the credibility for this industry is so low. The problem is also that once you go with an ins company and find out all the negatives with actual use of the policy it's too late to change because at that point if your pet has been treated for ANYTHING you now have a pre-existing condition and can never get it covered anywhere else. If you don't know the right question to ask how can you ask it? The sales people all get impatient if you ask them how X Y or Z will be covered so that customers can make an INFORMED decision. I think it will be a savings plan for me going forward instead of insurance. Figure over 10k in premiums to VPI and payouts were about 5k. Not sure if it's worth the "peace of mind" that many of us purchase these policies for. Last claim when my dog was the sickest I had supervisors promise to "look into" the fact that so much was denied though the diagnosis from the specialist was covered. TWO MONTHS later they still stonewalled me and never paid out. Thanks again for nothing VPI.

Posted: 02/01/2014
By:  

Glad that I read these reviews, especially, from the heart specialist. My vet told me VPI might be a good company and to look into their coverage. I will be telling her what I have found about VPI.

Posted: 02/05/2014
By:  

I agree with many of these reviews, VPI is the worst insurance out there, if you go to their website, all you see is good reviews, five stars. and no place to write your review , a true honest one.

Posted: 01/03/2010
By:  

If you want 80% back on a surgery you are going to have to pay much more than $40 a month for insurance.

Posted: 08/20/2015
By:  

our beloved lab developed bloat and had to have emergency surgery from which he had complications and we eventually had to let him go. Our emergency hospital bill for 4 days was $13,000. VPI paid us $3200...

Posted: 06/10/2011
By:  

I am very pleased with VPI. I JUST received the policy in the mail and had to take my dog to the emergency vet as she swallowed a razor blade out of my tool kit. The bill was about 2000.00 and VPI picked up about 1600.00 Going into it - my husband and I both had reservations but I am glad we did this. VPI was very responsive in getting our money to us. The good thing... my dog survived thank God. To me VPI is worth the $50.00/mo. for peace of mind and knowing that we're not going to hassel over getting reimbursed. Thanks VPI.

Posted: 12/10/2015
By:  

I had VPI Pet Insurance for my dog for 16 1/2 years. I agree that you have to read the fine print about the exclusions and how they pay. Often, I would get a small percentage, or nothing at all. Other times I was happy to get a check, but I did not even notice that they were not reimbursing us much toward the end of my dog's life until my husband noticed. I have changed to Embrace Pet Insurance. They pay 80% of the cost. Although, I asked them a question about a pre-certification form I received that asks for the submission of an estimate. I had to take my dog into the veterinarian, and no time for paper work to pre-certify a urinalysis that showed proteinuria. Ask this question of pre-certification. I don't know the answer yet.

Posted: 01/24/2010
By:  

How did you get 50% payed to you? I am paying for the top of the line policy and I recieved about a 20% reimbursement for an accidental poisoning.

Posted: 02/21/2012
By:  

If you read and understand what you are paying for.. taking the time to read the schedule and seeing what they pay out for issues... you should have no complaints about what you will get back. I have always received more than 60% of every claim I send in... and I send in a claim EVERY TIME I go to the Vet. I have always looked at what I should be getting back and what I get back and what I have figured match. I have never had any issues or problems with VPI and before I signed up.. I checked into the breed issues for my dog and what they would cover if something should happen (My dog is very energetic, and could at any time kill his ACL)
If you want to get back closer to 100% on your claims, you will have to pay up the ying yang for premiums.
I have been with VPI since Feb 2009 and until they give me a reason to go somewhere else, I will stay with them.

Posted: 03/05/2012
By:  

I paid $76 a month for one dog & got next to nothing in return.Even asking questions to clarify the policy I found the verbal answers given were not what was done.

Posted: 06/07/2010
By:  

Thanks for the info.

Posted: 06/14/2010
By:  

Well the Reimbursement schedule is not available to you until after you made payment arrangements. So when I was told I had $9,500 in coverage, I felt comfortable. I did not have $9,500 in coverage (Unless my pet suffered some 8 separate very serious events in a year). The VPI customary tables are not customary. They are a scham. For more expensive life saving procedures, VPI Customar schedule is from about 15% to 49%. The more expense, the lower % they cover. Stay away from VPI go to Trupanion.

Posted: 06/30/2010
By:  

VPI used to be really good. But their new versions of their policies leave you with very little in return.

Posted: 07/01/2010
By:  

I only got about 20% back and see VPI as misrepresenting what they offer.

Posted: 07/06/2010
By:  

I have had VPI insurance for 10 years and have upgraded my policy a couple of times as the dog aged. They have always been forthright about how much is covered, and sometimes it's even 100%. And always in 2-3 weeks. When we did not receive a good coverage recently for a second surgery and MRI, I called and they explained the reason. When the surgeon then called them to explain more fully, we received some more money. They are an insurance company, and given that all insurance companies are not my favorite people, and that obviously the bottom line is their profit, I believe VPI is better than the big health insurance companies a lot of people have to deal with in this country.

Posted: 07/06/2010
By:  

Which insurance company did you move to?

Posted: 07/20/2010
By:  

Don't listen to Linda, she is wrong. VPI Policy will state you have X Thousands of dollars of coverage. But the hidden agenda is the Customary and reasonable chart VPI uses. The Chart VPI uses are way lower then any Vet would actually charge you. If VPI customary/reasonable rates are accurate, you should be able to find not one, but many/majority of vet’s charges should be in VPI’s chart. You won’t find any vet that charges these rates that you find on VPI’s chart. From the chart I looked at, I would say some of these max amounts VPI has will truly amount to under 20% any vet would charge you.
I will give you an example on Snake Bite. Dogs are very susceptible to Rattle Snake (Or any Snake Venom) bites. Cats seem to have a higher tolerance. But your Dog will die unless he gets Vet Attention very quickly. Well the anti-venom used to treat Snake bites is very expansive. You are talking $200 CC. And at a minimum you are going to get 7 to 8 CC’s to treat it (Probably much more). The Cheapest you could expect to get out of there is $1,500. Great thing for insurance to cover. And if you had my policy that said you have up to $8,000 coverage you should be fine. VPI said the average cost of this treatment is $200. $200 is barely a start for this procedure. And every procedure I saw on mine I could tell you the VPI Chart was just a % of what any true vet would charge.
I was lucky in that I was able to see this scam. Hopefully you as a pet owner never have to have one of these types of procedures. If you don’t then you will never know that VPI is ripping you off.
The VPI reimbursement rates, they should be considered supplemental insurance, not your primary insurance. Of course then $40/month seems awful high for what they provide.
I don't mind exclusion. You as a pet owner/consumer need to educate. However when you tell me I have 8,000 in coverage, that is false. But what the VPI complaints are people going to the Vet, getting the Bill which is under what the coverage VPI says, but then VPI uses its customary/reasonable to only pay a small portion of the cost. You don’t see this chart until after you have already signed up and paid VPI. So most people will only run into it only after they have an medical need for their pet. That is when they get stunned. If you are fortunate enough to never have this, that is great, but you also won’t realize that VPI coverage is far less then the policy states.

Posted: 07/23/2010
By:  

I do think VPI has way to many exclusions on their policy, on things that a lot of animals will eventually get. Also, their payout is not the best. I've looked into all pet insurances for my dog and have to agree Trupanian is the best.....if you can afford the premiums. I can not. For my dog, it was about $80.00, but coverage is better.

Posted: 07/25/2010
By:  

Commenting back to Greg in Atlanta...the fee schedule IS available on the website BEFORE you enroll your pet. There are also 2 fee schedules. If you get the Standard coverage, they pay out 80% of a lower fee schedule amount. If you get the Premier Coverage, they pay out 90% of a higher fee schedule...but remember, your premium will be higher. Please thoroughly look over the website before you sign up...they are not hiding anything; all the info you need is there in black and white...you need to take the time to educate yourself.

Posted: 08/02/2010
By:  

I am not sure who said Trupanion is $80/month.... I have Trupanion and I am paying $34/month for my puppy with a ZERO deductible. They also pay 90% of the real vet bill, unlike most others. check it out. they also pay for all congenial and hereditary conditions. I even got hip dysplasia coverage!!!!

Posted: 08/03/2010
By:  

I have had my dog Gunner enrolled with VPI for almost 6 years now and I have been very satisfied with the coverage. Gunner has been a "high maintenance" labrador. When he was 5 months old we were at the vet for ingestion of multiple socks. Luckily all was fine but my vet said that "this one" might be a good candidate for insurance. Well he was right. We are extremely careful about leaving items laying around the house but he was able to find and few things. We have been into the vet for various ingestion issues and it is nice to know that most of my visit will be covered (and that my out of pocket will be minimal) to check out that he is ok. While Gunner has not had any really serious issues to deal with he is always getting something (Hot spots, diarrhea, ect.....). I do not put off going to the vet for fear of a big bill. VPI has always paid what they said they would pay and their turn around time is the best. Try getting that type of response from a human insurance company! Gunner just turned 6 and we have just paid for another year of insurance. It is nice knowing that Gunner is covered should anything happen to him and I will not end up with an expensive bill that I will have a hard time paying.

Posted: 08/04/2010
By:  

Re: Denver's Lecture on Personal Responsibility.
Yes, we consumers ARE responsible for knowing what we're purchasing. HOWEVER, what's wrong with consumers demanding that companies make information REASONABLY easy to access & analyze? Oh, what's that you say? A confused customer is a PROFITABLE customer... gee, do you think companies know this??? People, demand better!!

Posted: 11/02/2010
By:  

I have had VPI for about 13 years with no problems at all. Recently my maltese had lost control of her front legs and my local vet referred a specialist. After bloodwork, a MRI and an ultrasound, several conditions were found. I was not at all concerned about the bill, considering the excellent payment history I had with VPI. BUT, after weeks of phone calls and literally begging I finally got 50% payment. Both of my dogs are in poor health so I am stuck with this company. But I will definitely shop and compare for new coverage if I ever get another pet. But I guess 50% is better than nothing at all!!

Posted: 11/11/2010
By:  

We've had them 2 years and they paid what they promised on a couple of small vet bills. But BUYER BEWARE - they do post their payments and, as someone commented, they are well below real world charges. Our Maltese got a bee sting and went into shock. The cost of intensive care etc was about $800...they pay just $102 for a bee sting PERIOD. They were an officious pain in the $%# to deal with. We're happy to fire them.

Posted: 11/13/2010
By:  

The only reason to sign up with VPI is ignorance... seriousy. There is no way that you could shop around and decide to pick VPI. They:
a) have premiums that are no lower than the competition
b) have a purposefully baffling reimbersement policy. They give you a HUGE "schedule" of reimbersements. Basically you read through that list and think "oh, seems like the have most things on that list" but you really have no clue if the problem *your* pet will face will be on that list or not. You are basically just rolling the dice.
c) your premiums will go up as your pet ages.

Seriously, the only reason why they have any customers is that thy advertise, advertise, advertise.

Posted: 11/19/2010
By:  

So the story is all too common...
Person figures out that pet insurance is a good thing. Person googles it or uses a broshure from their vet's office or pet food store, and signs up with VPI without even bothering to read the terms or doing any comparison shopping. Person pays makes payments into plan for years, then has big bill and finds out that VPI only pays a small percentage of their bill. Then they want to get up on their high horse and lecture OTHERS about being responsible consumers... hahahaha. C'mon, you have no business lecturing others. What kind of person signs up with a plan that they will pay thousands of dollars into over time, and does no comparison shopping at all... NONE.

You got what you deserved, and you have no business lecturing others.

Posted: 11/23/2010
By:  

I agree, I have had VPI for 12 years, In these hard economic times, reimbursement should be more then 50%, but my shelties are members of my family, I'll pay what I have to pay.

Posted: 02/20/2011
By:  

VPI lied about the amount of coverage . They said they would cover 80-90% of costs ,well that's of their stated amounts only . What a rip off. stay away

Posted: 02/25/2011
By:  

WOW!...I'M READING ALL THIS AND AM SHOCKED. I GOT THIS INS. FOR 4 OF MY DOGS BECAUSE...LAST YEAR I WENT THRU CLOSE TO $20, OOO.OO IN VET BILLS (REALLY IN 6 MONTHS), MY 5YR OLD PUG HAD A BRAIN TUMOR AND DIED. AFTER ALL THAT, I LOOKED INTO THE INS. FOR MY OTHER DOGS AND WAS TOLD IF I HAD VPI FOR THE ONE WITH THE BRAIN TUMOR ALL OF IT WOULD HAVE BEEN COVERED AND ONLY A SMALL AMOUNT WOULD HAVE COME FROM OUT OF THE POCKET.. HAVE I BEEN LIED TO?

Posted: 03/28/2012
By:  

We have had VPI insurance on our first Golden and now our second and have been pleased with the service. Anytime we have called with questions VPI representatives have been very helpful.
The policies we have are Major Medical and we have needed them for multi surgeries etc. VPI has reinbursed us a little more than 50% after our deductable and than has been a great savings for us.

We would recommend VPI.

Posted: 04/05/2012
By:  

I had VPI originally switched to another provider in 2010 and was I ever SORRY. VPI changed significantly due to customer feedback. I should have kept VPI because it would have covered way more when one pet was diagnosed with ORAL MELANOMA. I spent in excess of $ 15,000 on her treatment; and would spent it again just for the hope of saving a pet with cancer. READ your POLICY, do not rely on SALES associates defintion of coverage. Never assume that your pet who is in robust health, extremely active, and the "pack leader" will not succumb to cancer. Diagnostics alone were approx. $4000, radiation therapy to reduce tumor size was $ 4500, chemo was $6000 + weekly x-rays and blood work and bone marrow boosters where a couple hundred more a "week"... plus internment in the cemetery plot you already purchased: casket $400 (PVC-Styrene), grave side internmnet (so we could stay through the process) $375, headstone (very basic) is now $850 ... you honor them in life and then spend a year paying medical fees you put on a CARE card - never use them - get a ZERO % credit card... much cheaper way... all in all WORTH EVERY CENT... you have to live with the decisions you make ... so pay attention to the fine print and as you would with a human health insurance policy know what coverage you have.

Posted: 04/11/2011
By:  

I don't have VPI insurance myself and can only attest to the comments from my clients (I'm a vet cardiologist) and my own interactions with VPI when trying to be an advocate for them. Basically, they do as they say and they cover what they say they will, but in the end, it is a very small amount for most issues. For example, with heart issues, a lot of diseases aren't covered at all, and the ones that are have a maximum reimbursement of between $250 to 660. Most of my clients have 9-12 yr old dogs that have been healthy their entire life. They have paid for insurance for years, and now there pet has a "leaky" heart valve. This is a very common age-related problem for a dog. Some of my clients have been told they have zero coverage for this issue and others have been reimbursed up to $500 total (less than the cost of diagnostics, much less treatment). I tried to look up the coverage once, and couldn't figure it out, as in one area, "mitral and tricuspid valve degeneration" is listed as ineligible, and in another location, "valvular heart disease" is listed as having a primary allowance of $660. In the same note, one client that had a dog with heart block and got a pacemaker placed (which cured this dog's issues and restored him to normal health) got $200 covered (out of $4-5K). When you look on VPI's Plan Benefit Sheet no coverage is listed for pacemakers in "primary allowance". But then a "secondary allowance" of $2005 is listed. The two are defined as:
Column A Primary Allowance is the benefit limit for the primary condition or procedure. This includes exam, diagnostic testing, prescriptions, injections, hospitalization, treatment, anesthesia and surgery.
Column B Secondary Allowance is the benefit limit for the condition or procedure that is treated along with the Primary Diagnosis condition or procedure.

I'm confused on how you can have a secondary allowance for a condition that has no coverage as a primary allowance. But maybe that's just me and it makes sense to everyone else.

All I know is that I haven't had a single client thus far that has been reimbursed for more than ~$600 for any heart condition with VPI. And it angers me every time I have a client that has insurance and still has to put their pet down or decline treatment because they simply don't have the money for treatment. They tried to cover their basis and get insurance to be responsible pet owners, but because their dog has heart disease instead of diabetes, or whatever other condition that is actually covered, they get no help, or very little at least. If they had been irresponsible and let their dog run off leash out in the streets and get hit by a car, they would have great coverage. Where is the justice in that.

So bottom line for me is KNOW what you are getting. READ every line and if you don't understand it, ask someone that might. As I said originally, VPI DOES cover what it says it does, but in my experience, the conditions that we routinely see everyday in specialty hospitals have very little coverage by VPI.

There are other insurance companies that do cover these things and my clients have been very satisfied with. Getting off my soapbox now.....sorry for ranting.

Posted: 04/22/2011
By:  

I agree the consumer should check out all the details before signing with any pet insurance. I negleted to do that also and have carried VPI going on 12 years - I have put in claims prior to recently maybe 2 times. I thought the coverage was 80% after the $50 co pay -in any event VPI sent the reimbursement in 2 weeks. At this time and after a episode where my loving pet was diagnosed with congestive heartfailure I am so glad I have this coverage - it enables me to make sure Max is well taken care of .I recommend everyone to carry this insurance.

Posted: 05/20/2011
By:  

I ins. two dogs My 10 year old and 3 year old My 10 year old is costing me over $70 dollars amonth I also notice I am not getting much back when I submit in a claim they are telling I have to pay $50 dollar co-pay and this just started I never had to pay a co-pay. VPI do not know what is going on with them I am looking for Pet Ins. that will not rip me off Please Help Me

Posted: 06/03/2011
By:  

My grown daughter was VERY happy with VPI and referred me to them. I enrolled immediately, but not without reading the coverages; I enrolled in the standard coverage, and have found VPI excellent. There have been no surprises.What I love about VPI: they cover what is in the contract, it is easy to fax, they send an immediate email telling me they have received it, and payment is ALWAYS immediate. It is the easiest insurance handling imaginable. My Jack Russell had a totally disintegrated tendon with major surgery, and they covered almost all, including follow up checks (% of course). What I don't like: the cost goes up considerably with the age of the dog, but I do understand the dog usually needs more help then. I can only give positives about this company and what they have done to help my Lucky Girl, efficiently and easily.

Posted: 06/29/2011
By:  

Please look at Dr. Cats. What a vet charges compared to what VPI calls Customary & Reasonable is the scam you are facing when you have a VPI policy. What VPI considers Customary & Reasonable is a sham compared to real world prices.
Most people buy insurance to cover major out of pocket expenses. You will not get that with VPI.
If you have a policy with VPI and hit a major vet bill (If it is even covered), VPI will at best pay out %50. And even though the amount is well within what they claim you have in coverate, when you get down to the specific procedure, VPI will use its customary and reasonable chart that will be 50% at best of the true cost.

Posted: 07/04/2011
By:  

I have had VPI for my two Havanese puppies. My policy is up for renewal and they are now a year old. First I would not recommend anyone getting their Wellness Plan. It will cost you less to just go ahead and pay for your animal's yearly exam, neutering and such and forget the insurance. The Major Medical insurance pays less than half of any claim I have submitted and I actually got tired of submitting and having claims denied. I am looking at other insurance companies since my anniversary date is coming with VPI.

Posted: 07/08/2011
By:  

I am going to be doing a bit more shopping for insurance with companies other than VIP. I have had my service dog insured with them for 3 years and have recouped very little. As a service dog, he was given a discount, but it appears that the price quoted online is no different than if he wasn't given a discount. I have sent in few claims, fortunately, and have been disappointed with the very small amount I was reimbursed each time....less than 50% after deductible. For those who have service dogs...IAADP is an organization that offers flea/tick, heartworm prevention, and other things such as cosaquin with your $20/yr membership fee. I can not say VIP doesn't do what they say, but my expectations were higher.

Posted: 08/03/2011
By:  

I've had two dogs covered through VPI. I can not say that I am overly joyed aboout the coverage as it leaves a lot to be desired. This bit of only one instance of a health problem per policy year is the most assine thing I've ever heard about, the reimbursement (as has been pointed out by others) is way to skimppy, if you are lucky, you get 45-50% reimbursement. Generally I've found that I'm lucky to have 20 to 25% reimbursement. While they do pay their paultry reimbursement amount fairly fast, there is still much on that end that needs to be done. I am not in favor of having the company to automatically charge my credit card for each months premium, I would prefer at least an email reminder of payment due so that I could schedule the payment myself. There have been numerous times that they have charged my account for the premium before the due date, I take offense at that. There is so much wrong with the company, that my vet will not take it as payment for services and bill me the balance due after the insurance pays. As a matter of fact the Vet is trying to get me to change to a better company and locally. I'm hesitant as I've not seen their reimbursement rates, and their premiums are exactly the same as I'm paying now $47.50/mo (which is outragous for an animal, even though I love my dog, the insurance is killing me.)All in all, could I recommend VPI? NO, will I change to another company? Yes, IF I can find one that comes up to my expectations for an insurance company.

Posted: 08/23/2011
By:  

I get back up to 80% from my claims. I agree that it is how you read the policy;having your vet understand makes a huge difference as well. Totally satisfied, when renewing watch to make sure that ryders are not dropped though;).

Posted: 08/31/2011
By:  

Stay away from VPI.
VPI is nothing more than a 2ndary type insurance.

They are nothing more than a predatory misleading company. They will tell you are covered for $9500. That is not true. VPI uses their own "Standard & Custary" fee reimbursement is not based on anything in the real world prices. And looking at the VPI customary/reasonable schedule, any big ticket item over 1000, VPI customary and reasonable is a joke, it generally runs about 15 to 25% of the true cost any vet would charge.

My dog got bit by a rattlesnake, which if you are familiar, snake venom is very deadly to dogs, even more so than humans. My Bill, a little more than 2,900. Very reasonable for emergency care and the snake Anti'Venom. VPI says it should only cost $800. There is not snake antivenom dosage on this earth that only Cost $800. This is just a fraction of the cost you would face. So I got $640 back, yet I thought I was covered up to $9,500.

So what do I say to Linda Silowka, what i want is the $9,500 in coverage that VPI says I have.

Before you buy VPI, take there Customary/Reasonable schedule to your vet. Use Snake bit as an example because it is easy to calculate. Ask them how much a CC of Antivendom cost and what the average amount of CC's is needed to treat a snake bite.

For the Morons that Justify VPI's Customary/Reasonable, this should constitute what most vets would charge. The VPI Customer/Reasonable there are no vets that even approach that low of an amount.

Compared to what someone had at Pet Best:

"My dog was bitten on the tongue by a rattlesnake on April 1/2. He was saved after two days in the emergency hospital, and the bill was slightly over $3,000.00. PetsBest had a check to me within about 10 days of receiving my paperwork. It amounted to almost $2400.00, 80% of the bill minus the $18.00 bio-hazzard fee and the $100 deductible. They are awesome!!!!! Whereas some companies only pay a set amount that they think it is worth, PetsBest pays based upon the actual bill. They were fast and paid as agreed. I wouldn't hesitate to insure with them continuously for any of my pets. I highly recommend PetsBest. And it is helpful to be quickly able to check the progress of the claim. Awesome company. "

Posted: 12/28/2011
By:  

Listen to Jim below. VPI is not what most would call true insurance.
While $9500 of coverage would appear to cover most types of vet expenses, with VPI you do not have $9500. VPI uses a reasonable and customary chart that is predatory practice on consumers. Once the true vet bill starts going over $400 range, the chart VPI uses is about 20%.
If you have a vet procedure that cost $1000 (Well below the $9500 the policy states), you would expect to get a reimbursement around $800. Not so fast, VPI will say the Customary and Reasonable chart this should only cost $300, take 80% of 300 and minus your $50 deductabile, now the VPI Policy is giving you coverage for 20% of the true cost.
So while the $9,500 sounds like a good policy for $40/month, you don't truely have 80% coverage. Most consumers would say a 15% to 20% reimbursement rate is like supplementary insurance.
Beware, if you are buying Pet Insurance to help in the event of tragic/high $ vet Care, VPI is not for you. If you are looking to have 15% to %20 coverage, VPI will do that (Assuming it is covered).

Posted: 01/05/2012
By:  

Customary and Reasonable Schedule is the issue. Most people would assume to mean what an average vet charges, which is not the case with VPI. Most people don't have the medical knowledge to know what the Customary/Reasonable Chart VPI uses to know what they what condition applys to its chart. And unless they have already had this exact issue, would not know what charges to expect a vet.
Customary/Reasonable charts from VPI in my mind are predatory. VPI uses the customary/reasonable chart to limit coverage to 15% to 30% of the true vet bill. The pet owner picks up the rest. The coverage you get from VPI is more like Co-insurance. Now when you consider the $40/month cost for Co-insurance, that is very expensive.
The $9,500 of coverage VPI states, forget it, it is a pipe dream. For you to qualify for $9,500 of reimbursment with the VPI Customary and Reasonable schedule, you probably have $35,000 in vet bills.
If you are buying Pet Insurance to protect yourself from a huge financial vet bill, VPI is not for you. You don't have protection.
If you sign up for VPI, you are not protected from high vet bills. It seems terrible that even with your pet insured, you still may have to refuse life saving treatment (Even though it is technically covered) because VPI Customary/reasonable schedule will only remiburse 15% of the true cost of the vet bill.