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MD Committee Considering Prohibition on Breed Discrimination in Insurance Policies

(Monday, February 11, 2013)

On Thursday, February 28, the Maryland House Economic Matters Committee will consider a bill that would prohibit insurance companies from excluding coverage or refusing to underwrite a customer solely based on the breed or size of dog they own.

AKC Government Relations encourages Maryland residents to contact the members of the House Economic Matters Committee and consider attending the February 28 hearing to ask the committee members to support House Bill 1203.

This bill differs from Senate Bill 296, which would protect dog owners from insurance discrimination solely because the person owns a dog – regardless of breed. Read more about Senate Bill 296, which had a public hearing on February 5.

Summary:

House Bill 1203 prohibits insurance companies that issue homeowner’s or renter’s insurance from the following:

  • Refusing to underwrite a risk based solely on a dog’s size or breed.
  • Excluding coverage for a specific breed or size of dog owned by the applicant or insured.

The AKC and its Maryland federation both support this bill, which would protect responsible dog owners seeking to obtain homeowner’s or renter’s insurance. Responsible owners should not be punished or singled out simply because of their dog’s breed or size. Read AKC's policy position statement on "Homeowners' Insurance and Dangerous Dogs"

What You Can Do:

  • Attend the February 28 House Economic Matters Committee hearing and express your support for House Bill 1203:

    House Economic Matters Committee
    Thursday, February 28, 2013
    1:00 p.m.
    Room 230, House Office Building
    Annapolis, Maryland

** If you wish to testify, you must sign the witness sheet no later than 12:45 p.m. Oral testimony is limited to 3 minutes. If you would like to submit written testimony, you must provide 40 copies to committee staff no later than noon.

  • Contact the members of the House Economic Matters Committee. Click here to access committee members’ contact information.

For questions or more information, contact the AKC Government Relations Department at (919) 816-3720 or doglaw@akc.org, or the Maryland Dog Federation at marylanddogfederation@yahoo.com.