Should You Continue Paying for Your Pet's Health Policy After It Dies? - NBC Southern California
Randy Responds

Randy Responds

CONSUMER PROBLEM? RANDY MAC HAS YOUR BACK.

Should You Continue Paying for Your Pet's Health Policy After It Dies?

After her dog's death, a woman was told she would have to keep paying for its health plan another 10 months

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    NEWSLETTERS

    A woman was told she would have to keep paying for her dog's health plan for almost a year following its death. Randy Mac reports for the NBC4 News on Tuesday, Feb. 14, 2017. (Published Tuesday, Feb. 14, 2017)

    This story starts out pretty sad. It's about Tink, a dog with a terminal disease.

    Colette Truax adopted her four years ago knowing she was on borrowed time.

    "She was my good girl," Truax said.

    Truax took out a wellness plan from Banfield Pet Hospital to pay for Tink's medication over the years. The policy renewed in October, but the next month Tink died.

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    "I was devastated," Truax said.

    In grief, she called to cancel Tink's wellness plan, only to be told it was a one-year policy. She'd have to keep paying for the next 10 months.

    "Why should I have to pay $50 a month for a dog that isn't around anymore?" Truax said.

    Attorney Brian Kabateck has an answer.

    "In the eyes of the law, animals are chattels, they're property, and you're buying basically property insurance," Kabateck said.

    That means everything is governed by the policy. Truax couldn't find hers, but the company shared it with us.

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    It states even in the event of "death or loss of pet," you have to pay the "the entire membership fee" or the full cost of the care their pet received.

    After we got involved, Banfield waived their policy and allowed Truax to cancel with no further charges. An exception Traux is grateful for, she says she'll be sure to read all the fine print before her next pet insurance policy.

    "Looking back, it's not the best decision we could have probably made for her," she said.

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