Unlimited access >

Insurance? Help!

I just bought an OTTB that I am having shipped to me. I’ve never shipped any horses and don’t keep insurance on the 2 I have now so this is all new to me. Is there specific insurance that will cover him while he is being shipped, especially since he is super cheap? Total price even after shipping is only $1500. Will I be able to get coverage for a value this low? Shipper suggests mortality but I’ll eventually want to cover major medical/surgery and maybe private horseowner liability as well.

What companies do you recommend that would be able to get me a quote relatively quickly? I’d like to have this settled before I send the shipping contract back.

There was a recent thread with a bunch of suggestions either in Horse Care or the H/J Forum - search Broadstone and you will likely find it. Broadstone is an agency you can call and ask if any of the companies they work with write coverage for a value this low.

1 Like

Broad stone was able to get me a quote but Blue Bridle seems to have the same coverage for a little better price.

1 Like

I was insured through Broadstone XL, but based on that other thread I contacted Jennifer Oliver with Central Virginia Insurance, who is wonderful btw. I plan to move my mortality coverage (same price) – and adding major medical for a better price than I could through Broadstone. However, I will check with Blue Bridle first!

1 Like

Blue Bridle seems pretty good (so far). I was able to get mortality and major medical/surgery up to $10,000 through Great American for a really great price. The woman answered all of my questions quickly and my new guy is already covered and ready to ship home! Fingers crossed I won’t ever need to make a claim on him…

My only advice is to review the policies closely. I have a $10k policy mortality/maj. medical, but it has sublimits of $2500 for lameness and $2500 for diagnostics. That may sound insignificant. However, I am currently 8 weeks into (5 weeks hospitalized) treating a massive leg infection. That diagnostic limit is blown very quickly and then all of those diagnostics are out of pocket. I think these lower policy limits are moving toward the sub limits. My underwriter is argonaut insurance. I have a $400 deductible and then they pay 100% subject to the sublimits.

My mortality included 3500 for emergency colic. The surgical covers “reasonable and customary vet fees” with a 250 deductible and 20% co-pay. I will definitely go through my policies with a fine-toothed comb to see what limits I have and what they define as “reasonable” vet fees.

My other 2 horses I have self-insured for 11 years and luckily haven’t had any expenses that I couldn’t handle out of pocket. Although I have plenty of room on the credit card to fill in gaps that insurance won’t cover.

You’ll spend about as much as he is worth. Since you already have 2 horses, you have an emergency fund, or know about how much you can afford to spend if one gets sick or injured.

And you should get a certificate of insurance from the shipper for general liability. If something happens to your horse in transit, you can file a claim against his policy.

1 Like

That is a good idea. For people shipping an uninsured horse, ask the shipper how much they carry on each horse. That is what prompted me to get insurance for the first time. I was shipping a newly purchased horse 1,200 miles and the company only carried $2,500 insurance per horse.

1 Like

An insurance company won’t pay out $2,500 on a $1,500 horse, although I understand your horse was probably more valuable. The old adage “you get what you pay for” is probably in effect - the companies with higher limits (regularly transporting valuable horses) probably charge more.

Agree that you should call Blue Bridle. They’ve insured all my OTTBs very reasonably.

1 Like

Yes I’ll definitely get a COI from them.

Agree that you should call Blue Bridle. They’ve insured all my OTTBs very reasonably.

I ended up going with Blue Bridle and got a very reasonable rate!

1 Like

Keep in mind, when shopping insurance policies, that the ‘most reasonable rate’ doesnt necessarily mean good coverage. Comparing policies is like apples and oranges, especially these days. As people have noted, there are now co-pays, max limits on diagnostics/treatments and variant deductibles. You might be getting a good deal on your premium, but that $200 you save might show up in a higher deductible, per claim, so in the end, are you saving money?
It doesn’t mean that one plan is better than another. It all depends on what you want your insurance for. My horse is insured for less than he’s worth, because Im not particularly concerned with a big mortality pay out. I pay less on premium for my major med but my plan only covers 50% on high end diagnostics, however I know that I am less likely to pursue those diagnostics in the event I should need it. But because I have a lower coverage plan, I can afford to have a higher amount of major med ($10k) that will come in handy in the event my horse needs colic surgery or has a major injury such as a joint involved laceration or illness requiring intense treatment and possible clinic stays.
I expect to pay more for my diagnostics but I have a lower deductible and premium. Others with more upper level horses or different preferences may be willing to pay more to ensure that when that horse needs a bone scan or shockwave or IRAP then it will be covered. Everyone has different reasons, but you really do need to know what you are looking for in an insurance policy when you insure your horse. Dont just look for the cheapest quote out there. :slight_smile:

At the bigger shows, insurance companies tend to have a representative there.
You can ask them about their policies, they will be glad to explain all they sell.

Many exhibitors bring a horse there to sell or that someone bought from them and will take home with them.
Some of those bigger shows have sales also.
Those horses are insured right there, as they change hands.

Some of those insurance companies with representatives there also sponsor classes, like Merkel.
OP, you could call them and see what they tell you, one more to ask.

Yes. I have a great insurance broker and very crappy underwriter to deal with BUT I have full surgical/major medical/ mortality on my OTTB I just purchased off the track in October. His value is 1400 because the lady who works for Hartford is a “troll” and would not even insure him for more than 1400. They are the only company that offers 7500 each in medical and surgical for horses with a cheap value. Policy only cost 296 for the entire year and will work until I change him over to his grown up policy.

Yes I got the same quote for Hartford but Blue Bridle was able to get me the same full coverage (and upgrade to $10K surgical) for only a little bit higher premium. American Reliable Insurance was another option but were double the price and required a hefty downpayment.