Kemper and Farmers Insurance now discriminating against breeds

I was notified by a representative of Kemper Insurance Company on Friday afternoon that, effective immediately, they no longer offer policies to owners of “pit bulls” and rottweilers. It was unclear from the communication I received whether current customers were included in the policy change, or if relates to new policy holders only.

In addition, as of March 1, 2013,  ­changes made to Farmer’s Insurance Company underwriting guidelines pertaining to dog breeds will go into effect for its California customers ONLY.  As of that date, the following breeds will not be covered under their policies:

*American Staffordshire Terrier (“pit bull”)
*Rottweiler
*Wolf Hybrid
*Mixes/hybrid’s of any of the above breeds shall be considered a restricted dog and must have a signed exclusion to be eligible for coverage.

New customers with these breeds will be excluded, and existing customers will soon receive exclusion forms.

Farmers states that the policy was changed because “three breeds were accounting for a significant number of dog bite claims in California.”  They contend they had two choices:  raise rates for everyone or have customers that own these breeds sign an exclusion that if their dog causes an injury, it will not be covered under their policy.  Einhorn Insurance Company, which is based in California, is working to reverse the policy, but in the meantime, have advised that they can help people with stand alone policies for their dogs.

A Facebook page, Say No To Farmers Ins,  has been set up where you can find out more: https://www.facebook.com/SayNoToFarmersIns

In addition, you can reach out to the corporate headquarters of Farmers Insurance Company and let them know you are disappointed with the policy change and ask them to consider reversing this decision.  You can reach them through an online form or at Farmers Insurance Company, 4680 Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90010, (323) 932-3200.  You will want to address any correspondence to “Fire Underwriting.”

We are certainly disappointed to learn that Kemper and Farmers Insurance Companies have decided to put into place discriminatory policies that punish all responsible owners of certain breeds of dogs rather than target the irresponsible and reckless dog owners responsible for the alleged problem.

Many thanks to our friends at Einhorn Insurance Company for the update on Farmers.  Einhorn Insurance offers dog liability insurance to responsible dog owners regardless of the breed of their canine companions.

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