A recent article in The Telegraph highlights the importance of basing the purchase of horse insurance on more than just the price of the premium. A reader wrote in to express her frustration and disappointment over an “unbelievable clause” in her Animal Friends horse insurance policy:

“My horse, Abushamah (Abu for short), injured his leg on the electric rope fencing around his summer grazing enclosure. But my insurer, Animal Friends, has declined my claim for vet bills.

After weeks of me waiting to hear, the insurer pointed to a clause in my equine policy, which states it does not cover horses for injuries caused by fencing.

Horses all go out in the summer to graze, and for Animal Friends to say that fencing accidents are not included in its policy is unbelievable. This means the policy it has sold me is not fit for purpose. I asked if it only insured horses that were kept in their stables all year round, but got no reply.

If I had noticed this clause, buried deep in the policy, I would not have bought it. Animal Friends never sent me a hard copy as I had requested. I like to be able to read it properly on paper rather than strain my eyes online – and I don’t have a printer.

After much debate, Animal Friends told me that I could have cancelled the policy within 14 days. I would have done if the clause had been more obvious. I am retired and on a reduced income. Abu is a rescue animal, a former racing horse. I took out insurance in good faith to give me peace of mind caring for him. – CL, Scarborough”

The Telegraphs Consumer Champion, Sally Henderson, after reviewing the policy documents confirmed that the exclusion “was positioned in such a way as to be easily missed” and “sandwiched immediately between extreme scenarios such as claims resulting from radiation, explosions, nuclear fallout and terrorism”.

One of our SEIB Horse Insurance experts, Anthony Burnett, was approached by The Telegraph to comment on the situation and explained that “significant exclusions” should always be highlighted to the customer. Anthony is aware that some horse insurance providers do exclude fence injuries, but confirmed that none of the policies that SEIB recommends contain such an exclusion. He went on to explain that “this underlines the importance of considering levels of cover and the expertise of the provider – and not solely the premium being offered – when selecting a policy.”

The full article can be found here.

About SEIB

We have been providing insurance for horses for over 50 years. This experience allows us to tailor policies to suit your circumstances and ensure that you and your horses are covered should the worst happen. If you’d like advice on your insurance please call us on 01708 850000.