January 29, 2020 Feature

Moving Toward Breed-Neutral Homeowners Insurance Policies

By Jeremy Moss Cohen

Homebuyers are required to obtain property and liability insurance coverage as a prerequisite to obtaining a mortgage. Many insurance companies legally refuse to provide coverage for dog owners of certain breeds. Breed identification, even by experts, remains a subjective guessing game with no scientific formula. Making decisions based on the perceived breed of a dog, without proper actuarial data, is an unsound practice strewn with errors. Insurance underwriters have unchecked discretionary power, which puts customers in the position of having to choose between the American dream and their family pet.

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