MD: SB296 would prevent insurance companies from discriminating against dog owners

A bill has been proposed in the Maryland Senate that would prohibit insurance companies from refusing to issue or renew a policy of homeowner’s or renter’s insurance based solely on the applicant or insured’s dog, regardless of the breed of dog; and prohibiting a policy or homeowners’s or renter’s insurance that provides liability coverage from excluding certain coverage arising out of contact with a dog under certain circumstances.

SB 296, proposed by Senator Zirkin, is currently in the Senate Finance Committee, and a hearing is scheduled for February 5, 2013 at 1:00 p.m.

Please contact the members of the Senate Finance Committee and encourage them to pass this bill in order to prevent insurance companies from discriminating against dog owners, an action that creates undue hardship on responsible dog owners.

Senate Finance Committee (block copy and paste)
thomas.mcclain.middleton@senate.state.md.us,john.astle@senate.state.md.us,
rob.garagiola@senate.state.md.us,barry.glassman@senate.state.md.us,delores.
kelley@senate.state.md.us,allan.kittleman@senate.state.md.us,
katherine.klausmeier@senate.state.md.us,james.mathias@senate.state.md.us,
ej.pipkin@senate.state.md.us,catherine.pugh@senate.state.md.us,
victor.ramirez@senate.state.md.us,rob.garagiola@senate.state.md.us

Please also contact your respective legislator for your district and ask them to support the bill, as well. If you don’t know who represents your district, please go to the legislative website and click on the link in the upper right-hand corner that says “Who Represents Me?”

You can follow the progress of the SB296 here.

SENATE BILL 296

Article – Insurance

19–215.

(A) AN INSURER MAY NOT REFUSE TO ISSUE OR RENEW A POLICY OF HOMEOWNER’S OR RENTER’S INSURANCE SOLELY BECAUSE THE APPLICANT OR INSURED OWNS A DOG, REGARDLESS OF THE BREED OF DOG.

(B) A POLICY OF HOMEOWNER’S OR RENTER’S INSURANCE THAT PROVIDES LIABILITY COVERAGE MAY NOT EXCLUDE COVERAGE FOR BODILY INJURY, PROPERTY DAMAGE, OR MEDICAL PAYMENTS ARISING OUT OF DIRECT PHYSICAL CONTACT WITH A DOG THAT IS OWNED BY OR IN THE CARE, CUSTODY, OR CONTROL OF AN INSURED UNDER THE POLICY.

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