The average settlement for a dog bite claim across the United States is about $40,000 according to the Insurance Information Institute. In Utah its much lower than that and states like California bring the average way up with an average dog bite settlement of $59,561. Some dog bit claims will reach into the hundreds of thousands, it depends on the limit of liability and severity of the bite.
With settlements like that insurance companies are clearly concerned and underwrite for aggressive dogs that can also cause greater injury if they bite. Our Anderson Insurance customers often ask, what are the aggressive dogs that insurance companies don’t prefer?
Utah Aggressive Dog List
Pit Bulls/Staffordshire Terrier/American Bully
Husky/Siberian Husky/Malamute/Wolf Breeds
This list is not all inclusive, different insurance companies will have different lists so you need to ask your agent about your insurance company. Many companies in Utah will not insure you if you have one of these breeds or exclude the dog from coverage meaning that if the dog were to bite someone, they would not cover the claim, you would be on your own.
We have found that once an attorney discovers a dog has been excluded from the policy they will back away from the claim. Attorney’s of course want to work with insurance companies and will seldom pursue a claim with a private party.
Insurance companies love dogs, we at Anderson Insurance Group love dogs and have donated to the Utah Humane Society of Utah. We encourage responsible dog ownership in Utah. If you want a dog, we encourage you to look at the friendlier breeds of dogs that will be more insurance and neighbor friendly. There is nothing worse than being the owner of the dog that has caused mayhem in the neighborhood, own responsibly, follow all the leash laws and love your dog.