December 24, 2020

Is it Right For You and Your Pet?

By haziqbinarif

Lemonade is the latest company to join the growing field of pet insurance providers. Even though they’re a brand-new entry, they shouldn’t be underestimated. Their success in providing low-cost homeowners, renters and condo insurance – with quick claims settlements – has set a precedent establishing Lemonade as one of the high quality providers in any insurance field they enter.

Lemonade has proven to be a disruptor in the homeowner’s, renters and condo insurance spaces, and we have every reason to believe they’ll perform a similar function in the pet insurance industry. Lemonade makes both the process faster and paying claims easier and more hassle-free. Just as is the case with their homeowners, renters and condo insurance, they’ll likely prove to be a low-cost provider of high-quality pet insurance.

About Lemonade Pet Insurance

Best known as a provider of low-cost homeowners, renters and condo insurance, Lemonade entered the pet insurance field in 2020. Founded in 2016, Lemonade is considered an “insurtech”, operating as a tech-centered insurance company providing their products entirely online. The company is based in New York City and currently offers its services in Germany, the Netherlands, and in 33 U.S. states, with more on the way.

Pet insurance is available for dogs and cats, and includes basic hospitalization, accident and illness coverage, and preventative and wellness packages. Coverage will start as low as $10 per month, and you can even get a bundling discount if you have your homeowners or renters insurance through the company.

Learn More: The Hidden Costs of Exotic Pets

Lemonade is different from traditional insurance companies that profit by keeping money not paid out in claims. With Lemonade, participants pay into the company, then have claims paid as needed. Under Lemonade’s model, it’s possible to have a claim paid in a matter of minutes.

Plus, any money left at the end of the year is distributed through their Giveback program, in which you can pick a cause you want your excess premium dollars to go to.

Lemonade has a Better Business Bureau rating of “B+”, on a scale of A+ to F. The company also has 4.9 stars out of 5 with more than 35,000 iOS users on the App Store, as well as a rating of 4.6 stars out of 5 stars from more than 7,000 Android users on Google Play.

How Lemonade Pet Insurance Works

Lemonade Pet Insurance works entirely online. That includes access for both the website and your mobile device. And not only can you sign up for the coverage through the app, but you will also handle all communications and filing of claims in the same way.

Like most other pet insurance providers, Lemonade allows you to work with any licensed veterinarian or pet care facility in the U.S. You can bring your pet to the care provider of your choice, and obtain reimbursement for services, sometimes before you even leave the veterinarian’s office. However, like with most other pet insurance companies, you should expect to pay the care provider directly, then receive reimbursement from Lemonade.

General parameters of the policy include:

Dental coverage: Not offered for routine coverage. However, the policy will cover injury to teeth caused by an accident, as well as the cost of extraction and reconstruction of damaged teeth.

Pre-existing conditions: Described as any condition that existed before the policy was purchased, including chronic conditions, bilateral conditions, or intervertebral conditions. These conditions are not covered.

Policy deductibles: $100, $250, and $500.

Co-insurance provision: Lemonade will pay up to 70%, 80%, or 90% of all covered expenses. The lower the coinsurance provision, the lower your premium will be.

Maximum dollar amount of coverage per year: Your choice of $5,000, $10,000, $20,000, $50,000, or $100,000.

Lemonade Pet Insurance -Example

Discounts: There is a 10% discount if you also have your homeowner’s, renter’s, or condo insurance through Lemonade.

What’s Included in Lemonade Pet Insurance

Lemonade Pet Insurance - What's included

  • Accidents, unexpected events like road accidents or poisoning that result in injury, sickness, broken bones and sprains.
  • Illnesses, including vomiting, diarrhea and infections.
  • Repeating or chronic conditions, like cancer, heart disease, diabetes, allergies, arthritis, and skin conditions.
  • Congenital or hereditary conditions, such as elbow and hip dysplasia, hernias, and blood and eye disorders.
  • Diagnostics, including blood tests, urine analysis, x-rays, MRIs, lab work, CT scans and ultrasounds.
  • Outpatient, specialty and emergency care, hospitalization and surgery.
  • Prescription medicines.

Additional Packages

Preventative and Wellness Package: Designed to keep your pet healthy, Lemonade will help pay for preventative care costs, including annual wellness exams, bloodwork, vaccines, and other services. You’ll also get wellness reminders and chat access to the company’s pet health experts.

Preventative care limits are as follows:

  • Wellness exam, $50
  • Heartworm test, $40
  • Internal parasite or fecal test, $35
  • Bloodwork, $65
  • Three vaccines, $75

Extended Accident and Illness Package: If you select this package, you’ll be reimbursed for treatments for functionality issues, like physical therapy, acupuncture and hydrotherapy. Those are therapies that can help your pet through a recovery process. As part of the package, Lemonade will also pay for visit fees that are charged for accidents and illnesses, over and above the actual cost of the treatment.

Product Features

Availability: Lemonade Pet Insurance is currently available in 33 states, and the District of Columbia. States where the coverage is available include Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, and Wisconsin. They promise other states will be added soon, so stay tuned!

Pet age limitations: Varies by breed, and will be different for each. However, once a policy is in force on a pet it will never be canceled due to the pet’s age.

Pet breed limitations: Hybrids with wolves or wild cats.

Policy exclusions: Lemonade will not cover pre-existing conditions, elective cosmetic procedures, or behavioral treatments. Also excluded are microchips, spaying or neutering, internal and external parasite prevention and conditions relating from breeding or pregnancy. Prescription foods, vitamins and supplements, obedience training and other behavioral conditions or recurrent conditions for repetitive occurrences are also excluded, as are burial and cremation expenses.

Other non-covered events: Accidents or illness owing to neglect, such as failing to provide your pet with adequate routine care.

Waiting period: As is typical of all insurance policies, Lemonade does impose a waiting period. It’s a one-time waiting period of two days for an injury, 14 days for illness, and six months for cruciate ligaments.

Mobile App: The Lemonade Pet Insurance mobile app is available on the App Store for iOS devices 11.0 or later, and is compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. It’s likewise available on Google Play for Android devices, 5.0 and up.

Filing a Claim with Lemonade Pet Insurance

How Lemonade claims work

You’ll find filing a claim with Lemonade to be easier than with traditional insurance providers. You can file a claim from the mobile app by hitting the Claim button. You’ll be guided through the rest of the process. In fact, the company claims 30% of claims are handled instantly.

You’ll be asked to enter your bank account wire information, and once your claim is approved, payment will be issued directly into your account. The company aims to pay claims “almost instantly”. That means it may be possible that the cost of a procedure or test will be paid before you even leave the veterinarian’s office.

You’ll be asked to do a short video on your mobile device explaining the claim in your own words. This may be an extra step, but it will avoid the need to complete too many input screens. You’ll also need to send a copy of the invoice and receipt from your vet or clinic, which can easily be done by snapping a photo of the documents from your smartphone.

Some cases will need to be fully reviewed and may take longer to settle. This may be more likely to occur when you make your first claim, since you will be unfamiliar with the process. All claims must be filed within 180 dates of treatment, including providing all necessary information.

Lemonade Pet Insurance Premiums

Since Lemonade advertises monthly premiums as low as $10, I ran a scenario based on an average dog. And I must admit I was surprised at how high the premium was.

The information was entered on a five-year-old Airedale Terrier, living in Atlanta and in good health.

The application requests the following information:

  • Your pet’s name
  • Dog or cat
  • Your home address
  • The pet’s age, breed, and gender
  • Your pet’s overall health condition (has always been healthy, has medical issues, had issues and is now healthy are the choices)
  • Does your pet currently have active pet health insurance?

With a $250 deductible and 80% coverage up to $20,000 per year, the premium came back as follows:

Lemonade Pet Insurance example 2

There is also an optional charge of $16 per month for the Preventative and Wellness Package, plus another optional additional Extended Accident and Illness package, for an additional$9.25. That brought the total cost of coverage up to $58.58 per month, or just about $703 per year.

Lemonade Pet Insurance - keep healthy

That’s a long way from the $10 per month advertised.

Lemonade Pet Insurance extended accident and illness package

But just to see if the $10 premium is legitimate, I ran a one-year-old, medium domestic female in excellent health. That came back at just $$10.50 per month. That policy similarly features a $250 deductible, with 80% reimbursement up to $20,000 per year.

It’s worth noting that pet insurance for cats is substantially less expensive than it is for dogs.

Related: Should You Buy Pet Insurance?

10% discount

How to Sign Up with Lemonade Pet Insurance

You can sign up for coverage online or through the Lemonade Mobile App. The process will take just a few minutes. You’ll need to place a credit or debit card on file to pay your premiums, which will be billed on a monthly basis.

Lemonade will require that you have a medical exam on file from the 12 months prior to your policy period, or from the first two weeks your policy is in force. That information will be required before the company will pay any claims for your pet.

Customer Service & Support

Customer support is available through the app and the website, under the “Help” button. Additionally, support is available by phone at (844) 733-8666, Monday through Friday from 9am to 8pm EST.

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