A bill prohibiting insurers from charging higher premiums or denying coverage based solely on a dog’s breed has been signed into law by Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak.
According to the wording of the bill, SB 103 will formally prohibit an insurer from “refusing to issue, cancel, refuse to renew, or increase the premium or rate of certain insurance policies solely on the basis of the specific breed or mix of breeds of a dog.”
Proponents of the bill argue that studies have shown that breed is not a factor in dog bites, but despite this, many insurance companies would still use breed as a factor for policies and determining claims. premium rate. Prior to this law, if an owner purchased a dog of a certain breed, home insurance could void coverage. Proponents of the bill also noted that per-breed regulation has historically been ineffective and unfairly punitive for responsible dog owners.
Insurers are generally concerned about any law that might interfere with the normal course of underwriting or pricing a risk. Insurance companies respect their need to be able to underwrite and properly assess risks.
The law allows insurers to ask other questions about the dog in question, including whether the dog has bitten someone, whether the dog has been deemed dangerous or vicious, and whether there have been any complaints about the dog.
Proponents of the bill also noted that in other states that do not have laws against breed bans, families may be forced to choose to become underinsured or uninsured or end a relationship. with a beloved pet. They also note that dogs should be judged on character, not breed stereotypes.
Nevada was the first state to pass this type of law, which will go into effect on January 1, 2022.