Waiting Periods – Pet Insurance Terms
What is a Waiting Period?
A waiting period is the time between the day you enroll and the day coverage starts. The day your coverage starts is referred to as the effective date. The reason companies have waiting periods is to avoid pet owners enrolling in a plan to cover a pre-existing condition.
There are three different waiting periods:
- Waiting Period for Accident: 0 – 15 days
- Waiting Period for Illnesses: 14 – 30 days
- Waiting Period for Orthopedic Issues: 14 days – 12 months
Waiting Periods by Company
Waiting periods are pretty straightforward, but if you’re still stuck this might help.
|Healthy Paws Pet Insurance & Foundation||15 days||15 days||15 days (12 mos. for hip dysplasia)|
|Embrace Pet Insurance||2 days (in most states)||14 days||6 mos. for dogs (This can be reduced by following Embrace’s Orthopedic Exam and Waiver Process)|
|Trupanion Pet Insurance||5 days||30 days||30 days|
|ASPCA Pet Health Insurance||1 day||15 days||15 days|
|Petplan Pet Insurance||5 days||15 days||15 days (6 mos. for cruciate ligaments and patellar luxation)|
|Nationwide Pet Insurance||14 days||14 days||14 days (12 mos. for cruciate and meniscus issues)|
|Pets Best Insurance||3 days||14 days||14 days (6 mos. for cruciate ligaments)|
|FIGO Pet Insurance||5 days||14 days||14 days (6 mos. for knee issues)|
How it Works
Here is a simple example to give you a better sense of how it works.
- Effective Date: October 1, 2016
- Policy Period: October 1, 2016 to September 30, 2017 (12 months)
- Waiting Period Accidents: 1 day from effective date
- Waiting Period Illnesses: 14 days from effective date
- Waiting Period Orthopedic: 6 months from effective date
Pet insurance companies use waiting periods to prevent pet owners from enrolling in a plan because their pet is sick. Pet insurance policies are designed to protect against unexpected health issues.