- No payment caps
- Extensive medical coverage
- Charitable donations
- Easy claim submission
- Pays vet directly
- No exam and wellness coverage
- Long waiting period
- Reimbursement limit
Among the rising number of companies that offer pet insurance plans, Healthy Paws is a name that stands out, and with good reason. The company offers pet parents reasonably priced, customizable policies that far outshine most of its competitors in terms of coverage, and providing outstanding value for money. The lack of payment caps is particularly appealing. Animal lovers would be happy to support the company, though, since the Healthy Paws Foundation helps countless nonprofit pet rescue organizations with various donations. What’s more, the company has a dedicated, compassionate team working hard to help unfortunate pets receive the expensive, often lifesaving treatments that they might require. Since its founding in 2009, Healthy Paws has managed to prove that comprehensive and trustworthy insurance does not have to equal inordinate prices that only the wealthiest of owners would be able to afford.
Healthy Paws Introductory Video
Services and Coverage
Healthy Paws has only one comprehensive insurance plan. There is no need to worry about a cheaper policy not covering a particular condition; the plan provides equal coverage to all pets. Healthy Paws is upfront about what treatments it does and doesn’t pay for and its website contains a list and an extensive FAQ section to help pet parents understand the particulars. While there are drawbacks, such as the lack of a wellness plan, it is nevertheless convenient and more than satisfactory for most customers.
Slightly disheartening is the lack of exam coverage and the fact that the insurance plan does not cover the fee for burial when a beloved pet passes away, although euthanasia is included in the plan if recommended by the vet. Also, waiting periods are long at 15 days for both illnesses and accidents.
Like most pet insurance companies, Healthy Paws doesn’t cover any animals besides cats and dogs. Since the market has only recently begun to gain popularity, expansion in this regard could take a while, but hopefully more exotic species of pets can soon enjoy the protection they deserve as well. Most cats and dogs, however, are eligible and can be enrolled between ages of 8 weeks and 14 years. Other than these age requirements, the customer will only need to provide medical records including any notes that the vet has made. Suffering from preexisting conditions does not disqualify the pet either, but treatments related to those will not be covered by the insurance.
Healthy Paws has a great mobile app in which customers can access their accounts and allows users to view the Pet Care Blog for free resources. There is also a Refer a Friend option, which is one of the charitable efforts of the Healthy Paws Foundation. With each complete referral, the company donates $25 to help homeless pets. Further donations are made via the Rescue Race, which is a charitable initiative that helps nonprofit organizations with a minimum of $45,000 each time a competition is held.
Submitting a claim for pet insurance can be a hassle with most companies, but with Healthy Paws the process is simple and efficient. For one, there is no need to bother with forms since all customers need is a copy of the veterinary invoice. The company’s smartphone app is the most convenient way of submitting claims as it allows for direct uploading of a photo of the invoice by clicking on the ‘New Claim’ option.
Other submission methods are not exactly difficult either. Claims can be made online via Healthy Paw’s Customer Center, but they can also be sent to them via fax, email, or even postal mail. For pet parents that prefer to use a form, both pre-populated, personalized forms and blank documents are available to download from the Healthy Paws website.
Processing and Reimbursement
The claim will be processed as quickly as possible and Healthy Paws is proud to boast its ability to process 99% of submissions within two days. Take note, however, that the FAQ section makes it clear that the company cannot be held accountable for delays, no matter how long. It carefully states that the staff “work hard ” to process submissions within ten days, but this is in no way a guarantee.
Reimbursements are issued within 24 hours after a claim is processed, although it can take up to ten days to arrive depending on the method a customer chooses to receive the payout. Healthy Paws can transfer the money as a direct deposit via Automated Clearing House (ACH) or mail it as a check. However, there are unfortunate situations that may arise that make it impossible for the customer to wait for the payout. In such cases, Healthy Paws may be contacted on (855) 898-8991 to pay the veterinary invoice directly to the vet, which can be a literal lifesaver.
Cost, Reimbursement, and Deductible
As with all pet insurance, the basic rate depends on a variety of factors such as the species, breed, size, age, or medical history of the pet. Even the customer’s postal code influences the rates, so living in the right state can entitle you to a fairly decent discount.
The monthly premium is further affected by the deductible and reimbursement level that a pet parent chooses. The deductible, which is the amount of a money a customer pays before the insurance plan kicks in, renews annually and can be $100, $250, or $500. The reimbursement level is limited to 90% maximum but, unlike most insurance companies, at Healthy Paws there are no payment caps at all, which more than compensates for that measly 10% that customers will have to fork out for treatments. Since monthly premiums depend on so many factors it would be difficult to list all the possible rates, but the average amounts range from $36 to $94 per month. The premiums do not increase because of a pet’s age and claims are not penalized either. There is, however, an annual increase due to the ever-rising veterinary costs.
To better demonstrate insurance costs, see below a pricing chart with examples featuring Yoda, Best Review’s mascot. He is a young, virtual puglet, energetic, and healthy as a horse.
Healthy Paws has a 30-day Free Look Period, so pet owners can cancel their insurance within a month and the premium will be refunded. A slight bummer is the one-time administration fee of $25, which is not included in the refund.
Enrollment and Cancellation
Getting pet insurance is easy at Healthy Paws. All you need to do is call the customer service, or head over to the website and start the process by requesting the rates for your pet. From there your policy can be customized after being directed to an online form. Pets are eligible for enrollment between ages of 8 weeks and 14 years, with a full physical examination by a licensed vet being the only other condition of acceptance. Under 6 years of age, exam results cannot be older than 12 months, but after that pets must be examined within 30 days prior to enrollment. Without this, the owner is given 15 days after enrollment to have the pet examined or the contract will be voided.
If no claims are made, then policies can later be modified to your liking. If you have submitted a claim, then only reimbursements may be lowered or deductibles raised. To cancel the insurance, owners must call customer service, but don’t forget that no contract can be terminated until the request has been submitted in writing as well.
Healthy Paws’ customer service is pretty good. The company’s website is easy to navigate and contains a helpful FAQ section where customers will find answers to most questions, but if issues do arise, then it is easy to contact the staff. Healthy Paws answers emails sent via its website eventually , but if a timely reply is preferred, then the company should be contacted via phone during working hours. Customer service will answer calls on the weekend as well, which could be important if an emergency arises and immediate payout direct to the vet becomes necessary. The team is polite and very compassionate, often following up on cases and inquiring about the well- being of the pet. Healthy Paws received an A+ insurance rating as well as an A+ grade certification from Better Business Bureau.
Pet insurance can be a gamble since there is no guarantee that the invested money will ever pan out, yet if an emergency arises, nothing can make a pet parent more grateful than the lack of a financial burden. With Healthy Paws, the gain is greater than with other companies: payouts are in no way limited, so no matter how expensive a treatment gets or how long it takes to cure a condition, the company will pay.
The peace of mind this gives is insurmountable, even if the company doesn’t provide a 100% refund when cancelling. Also, by purchasing a policy from Healthy Paws, owners are indirectly contributing to the charitable efforts of the company. Healthy Paws is a trustworthy insurance provider, offering excellent, compassionate service for reasonable prices.