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The Massachusetts Joint Committee on Financial Services is scheduled to consider a bill on November 10 that would protect responsible dog owners by prohibiting insurance companies that offer homeowners insurance from refusing, cancelling, or imposing an increased premium on clients due to the specific breed of dog(s) kept on the property. 

Summary:

Senate Bill 501, sponsored by Senator Anne Gobi, creates new regulations for homeowners insurance companies that offer policies insuring against liability for injury to persons or property.  These companies would be prohibited from refusing to issue, renew, or cancel a policy; or impose an increased premium because of a specific breed of dog that is harbored on the property.

The AKC supports these provisions, which will protect responsible dog owners from homeowners insurance discrimination based solely on the breed of dog they own.  The bill does allow for insurance companies to take these actions if the dog has been declared dangerous based on current law.

Visit the Breed-Specific/Dangerous Dog Laws key issue page on the AKC Legislative Action Center for more information and talking points on breed-specific legislation and homeowners insurance issues.

Senate Bill 501 also mandates that all dog bites or attacks that result in medical attention must be reported to the Massachusetts Department of Public Health within 60 days.  If no report is filed, then the insurer is released from the liability of paying for damages. 

What You Can Do:

  • Attend the Joint Financial Services Committee hearing on November 10 to support prohibition of breed-specific premiums for homeowners insurance. 

         The hearing information is as follows:

         Massachusetts Joint Committee on Financial Services hearing
         Tuesday, November 10, 2015
         10:30 am
         Massachusetts State Capitol, Room B-2
 

  • Contact the members of the Joint Committee on Financial Services prior to the November 10 hearing to support prohibition of breed-specific premiums for homeowners insurance.  Click here for committee and individual committee member contact information.

AKC Government Relations will provide more information on this bill as it becomes available.  For questions, contact AKC GR at (919) 816-3720 or doglaw@akc.org.

The Massachusetts Joint Committee on Financial Services is scheduled to consider a bill on November 10 that would protect responsible dog owners by prohibiting insurance companies that offer homeowners insurance from refusing, cancelling, or imposing an increased premium on clients due to the specific breed of dog(s) kept on the property.

If you have any questions please don't hesitate to contact us at enewsletter@akc.org
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