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Vol. 10 - Issue 4

June 17, 2021


New Nevada Law: Insurers Can’t Treat Dog Breeds Differently


In a move hailed by animal rights activists, and objected to by insurers, earlier this month Nevada Democratic Governor Steve Sisolak signed into law Senate Bill 103, which prohibits insurers from using a dog’s breed to deny coverage or charge a higher premium.  In legal speak, the law, applicable to homeowner’s, renters, mobile home and umbrella policies “[p]rohibits an insurer from refusing to issue, canceling, refusing to renew or increasing the premium or rate for certain policies of insurance on the sole basis of the specific breed or mixture of breeds of a dog.”

In one media report, Ledy VanKavage, the senior legislative attorney for animal group Best Friends, stated that “breed is not a factor in bites.”  In that same report, Mark Sektnan, vice president of the American Property-Casualty Insurance Association, saw it differently: “Insurance companies must be able to properly underwrite and rate risk.  If insurers are forced to insure those homeowners with an increased risk, whether that’s a leaky roof and inadequate stove or an aggressive dog, they must be able to charge an adequate rate.”

However, insurers can still ask applicants if a dog, located on the to-be-insured property, is known to be dangerous or vicious, and, if so, refuse the risk or price accordingly for it.


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