Support Massachusetts Bill To Eliminate Breed-Specific Bans In Insurance Policies!
The American Kennel Club (AKC) has learned that Massachusetts House Bill 2054 will be heard by the Joint Committee on Financial Services on Tuesday, September 13. The bill seeks to prohibit insurance companies from refusing to issue or renew, cancel, or charge an increased rate for homeowners’ insurance based on the breed of dog owned by the policy holder. Both the American Kennel Club and the Massachusetts Federation of Dog Clubs and Responsible Dog Owners support HB 2054.
As introduced, House Bill 2054 prohibits insurance companies from refusing to issue or renew, cancelling, or charging an increased rate for homeowners’ insurance policies based on the breed owned. The bill does allow for insurance companies to take these actions if the dog has been declared dangerous based on current law. Additionally, all dog bite/attack cases that result in medical treatment must be reported within 60 days of the incident to the state’s Department of Public Health (DPH), which will compile statistics on the issue. Insurers will be released from liability for paying for damages if owners fail to report a qualifying incident within 60 days.
The American Kennel Club believes that insurance companies should determine coverage of a dog-owning household based on the dog’s deeds, not the dog’s breed. If a dog is a well-behaved member of the household and the community, there is no reason to deny or cancel coverage. In fact, insurance companies should consider a dog an asset, a natural alarm system whose bark may deter intruders and prevent potential theft.
The American Kennel Club supports House Bill 2054 as introduced.
What You Can Do:
Contact the members of the Joint Committee on Financial Services and express your strong support of HB 2054. (For talking points against breed-specific legislation and practices, click here.)
Senator Anthony Petruccelli, Senate Chair
Senator Brian A. Joyce, Senate Vice Chair
Senator Michael J. Rodrigues
Senator John F. Keenan
Senator Gale D. Candaras
Senator Michael R. Knapik
Representative Michael A. Costello, House Chair
Representative Carlo P. Basile, House Vice Chair
Representative Christopher G. Fallon
Representative Lori A. Ehrlich
Representative James J. Dwyer
Representative Russell E. Holmes
Representative Marc T. Lombardo
Representative Kevin J. Murphy
Representative James M. Cantwell
Representative Timothy R. Madden
Representative Nicholas A. Boldyga
For more information, contact AKC’s Government Relations Department at 919-816-3720, or email email@example.com; or the Massachusetts Federation of Dog Clubs and Responsible dog Owners at firstname.lastname@example.org.