Mark Harrop Business Development Manager

May 07

Software company say nay to high pet insurance premiums and insurance fraud

Pet owners can soon look forward to reduced stress in their time of grief, thanks to intuitive technology from Aquarium Software, that’s helping to take the added burden of hiked premiums out of the tragic equation of losing a loved family pet. As well as helping deal with an owner’s grief in the most sympathetic way, an added benefit of the software is fraud reduction, helping make the claims process smoother and more efficient for the industry, as well as the customer.

The relationship you have with your pet is often similar to the one shared with the rest of your family, and as a result, losing them to accident or illness often hits you and those who were close to the animal, hard. On top of this, for those who find pet insurance unaffordable, the effects of losing a pet can hit your bank balance, not just your emotions. One 24-year-old Staffordshire lady was left distraught when her horse died after being spooked by nearby fireworks. The high cost of insurance premiums meant that she had to pay the £360 for her nine-year-old mare, Gracie, to be put down out of her own cash and with another one of her horses also injured, she would be the one forking out for any future treatment.
“The Staffordshire horse owner will be deeply saddened by the loss of her horse, this animal was most probably the apple of her eye and now she’s gone due to a freak accident,” explained Mark Colonnese, Sales and Marketing Director. “Whilst no insurance plan can bring back a cherished pet, more affordable premiums would mean this lady wouldn’t have to suffer the needless financial burden that has come with losing her beautiful animal.”
The average cost of household pet insurance is now believed to be around £220 a year according to the latest 2011 figures and the average cost of equine premiums is believed to have risen at four times the rate of inflation year on year for the last three years, costing between £420 to £780 depending on breed and value.*
Insurers attribute these steep increases to the rising costs that come with new veterinary treatments, however Aquarium Software believes that fraud is also a big factor in making the pet sector both unaffordable for the customer and non-profitable for the insurer. With high profile fraud cases along with figures from the Association of British Insurers that detected pet insurance fraud soared to £2m in 2010, from £420,000 the year before that, it’s clear that the cost of fraud is also hitting consumers’ pockets hard.
“There have been a number of high profile cases in the news of greedy horse owners, veterinarians and others in the trade abusing a position of trust in return for profit,” explained Colonnese. “Whilst there is no excuse for these criminal acts, it’s unfair on the consumer to pick up the brunt of these costs to insurers in the form of high premiums, that’s where our software can help.”