Frequently asked questions
When do I have to pay a co-payment?
A co-payment is currently payable on ALL claims if you renew your policy after your dog turns 8 or your cat turns 10. The co-payment is a payment of a fixed percentage of the claim for which you are liable. Like your excess, this is deducted from your policy limit.
The co-payment system allows us to continue offering competitively-priced cover for your pet as they get older.
How do I know that my claim has been received?
If you provide us with your mobile number this will allow us to send texts to acknowledge receipt and update you on your claim.
Checking if I am covered to go ahead with my pet’s treatment
If your vets are registered to our Pawtal system, we can pre-authorise any amount of treatment that would be required in a 24-hour period prior to it going ahead for your peace of mind! Please note that treatment authorised will be subject to your policy terms and limits.
If submitted between 9am and 5pm we aim to provide an outcome within the hour! Your vet should be able to tell you if they’re signed up to the service.
If your vets are not signed up to our Pawtal system, we can look to pre-authorise treatment going ahead within a 24-hour period that is or, exceeds £1000 within your policy terms and limits. Please note that our Basic policy would not be applicable.
Can I claim for complementary treatment?
Yes, all of our policies provide cover for complementary treatment, some of our policies are subject to an inner limit. You can check this this information by checking your ‘Your Complete Guide to Your Pet/Standard/Mature Policy’.
What should I do if I’m unhappy with the outcome of a claim?
If you are unhappy with the outcome of a claim you should contact a Claims Specialist on 0344 557 0300 to discuss your case further.
Our agents will be able to talk you through the next steps.
Should you wish to make a complaint, please visit our complaints page or more information.
Will my premiums go up if I make a claim?
We review your premium price on an annual basis, and there are multiple factors that may cause pricing changes, either up or down, such as your location, the average cost of vet treatment at the time, changes in tax rates etc. However, we do not offer “no claims bonuses” to our policies, as we think that is unfair to our policyholders who do need to claim. We regularly review our pricing structure to make sure we give our customers a fair deal.
Can you pay my vet directly?
Yes, we can pay your vet directly at their discretion This can be done by you simply ticking the box confirming ‘pay my vet directly’ on the claim form, or alternatively, your vet can claim directly from using Pawtal, our online claim system for vets only.
Can someone else talk to you on my behalf?
You can authorise a friend or family member to talk to us about your policy on your behalf by calling us on 0344 557 0300. You will have to formally request for this person’s name to be added to the policy as an authorised person before we can speak to them, to ensure your protection and privacy.
This may come in handy if you need us but are unable to contact us yourself for any reason. Your authorised person will only be able to relay information to you, they will not be able to make changes or amendments to your policy, such as a change of address or payment details, provide information regarding a claim, or cancel your policy.
Please note – an authorised person CANNOT sign the claim form, this must be done by the registered policyholder.
When do I have to pay an excess?
For all of our policies, except Max Benefit, your excess is deducted once per condition per policy year. This means that you pay your excess upon your first claim, and should the claim continue past your annual renewal you will have to pay the excess again.
Our Max Benefit policies only require you to pay an excess once per condition.
What’s a co-payment?
Depending on your policy type and the age of your pet, a co-payment may also apply, which is the amount that you are required to pay towards a claim (in addition to the excess).
A co-payment is generally payable for dogs aged 8 years and older and for cats aged 10 years and older, and please check your policy schedule to confirm the exact percentage applicable.
How is an co-payment applied to a policy?
The co-payment is deducted from the overall limit of your cover. For example, if you have a policy with a condition limit of £4,000, an excess of £69 and a co-payment of 35% the maximum settlement would be £2,555.15 for a single condition, assuming you claim this limit within one policy year.
Please check your policy summary to find out time restrictions relating to your limits, and how the excesses and co-payments will be applied in relation to this.
What’s an excess?
The excess is the amount that you pay towards each accident, illness or condition you claim for. You will pay an excess for each new condition and this will be deducted from the first claim relating to that condition. If you claim for the same condition over multiple policy years (i.e. following annual renewal of the policy) you will find a new excess is deducted each year. For our Max Benefit policies the excess would only be payable once per condition.
How is an excess applied to a policy?
The excess is deducted from the overall limit of your cover, please refer to your schedule for a breakdown of the maximum policy limits applicable.
So, with an example limit of £3,000, if you have selected an excess of £69, the maximum settlement made would be £2,931 for a single condition. Please check your policy summary to find out time restrictions relating to your limits, and how the excesses will be applied in relation to this.
Please also check your policy summary to see how excesses might be applied to non-veterinary benefits.
Which claim form do I use?
We have four different claim forms for dogs and cats, six for horses and two for riders.
For dogs and cats:
- The New claim form should be used if you’re claiming for a particular condition, illness or injury for the first time, or for a new medication that hasn’t been claimed for on an ongoing condition
- The Continuation claim form is used if you’re claiming for further fees regarding a claim you’ve started before, for example for illnesses, injuries or conditions requiring follow-up treatment
- The Vet pre-authorisation form is for pre-authorisation of future treatment if it’s likely to cost over £1000.
- The Repeat medication form should be used to claim for repeat prescriptions from your vet or online pharmacy.
For horses, please use the following forms to register a claim, where your policy includes the stated benefit:
- The General claims form should be used to claim for vet fees, loss of use or the death of your horse
- The Saddlery and track form should be used to claim for theft, loss or damage of saddles and tack
- The Trailer form should be used to claim for the theft, loss or damage of your trailer
- The Personal accident form should be used to claim for injuries caused to you by your horse
- The Loss by theft form is for claiming for the loss of your horse by theft or straying, as well as claiming for any monies used for advertising and/or reward for your missing horse
- The Vet pre-authorisation form should be filled in and sent by your vet in advance of treatment likely to cost more than £1500
For riders, please use the following forms:
- The Personal accident form is for personal accident claims.
- For Emergency vet fees, please complete the standard equine vet fees form but add that it was an emergency.
- For Public liability / custodial liability, please call us on 0344 557 0300.
If you need more help please contact us on 0344 557 0300.
If you’d like us to post a form to you, please call us on 0344 557 0300 or email us at email@example.com.
How will my claim be paid?
We pay any successful claims via BACS transfer.
If you pay by Direct Debit, we will pay your claim into the same account as we take payment from. If you pay by another method, you will need to nominate an account on your claim form and provide details.
We can arrange to pay your vet direct or reimburse you your eligible costs if you have already paid. If you want us to deal with your vet directly you’ll need to tick the relevant section on your claim form.
What is Pawtal?
Pawtal is our online claims system for vets and allows us to pay your vet directly. It is not designed for customers to use but only vets.
It is an online service that enables vets who have registered to submit a claim online directly to Animal Friends on your behalf, after taking a few details from you.
In many cases we’re able to pay successful claims on the same day they are submitted to us. This can mean a very fast response to the claim at the critical time when your pet needs immediate attention.
How can I make sure my claim is processed quickly?
To make sure your claim is processed without a hitch you need to make sure:
- You’ve selected the right form for your claim
- The form is signed by the policyholder and the vet who carried out the treatment/appointment
- You include a full medical history from all vets your pet has attended
- An invoice with a full breakdown of the treatment is included
- BACS details are included so that the relevant person can be paid; either yours if you paid your vet up front or your vet’s if we are paying them
- If you pay by monthly direct debit we can only pay into the account we take payment from
- If you wish for us to deal with your vet directly, please make sure this option is ticked on your claim form
- All details must be correct, so please double-check them before sending
Alternatively, your vet can claim directly from us using our Pawtal system. Your vet should be able to tell you if they’re signed up to the service.
Your claim will then be reviewed in line with our T&Cs.
How long does it take to assess a claim?
We aim to process claims within 5-7 working days assuming the appropriate claim form is used and completed in full with all of the relevant information by yourself and your vet.
It is important to provide full medical history/clinical notes and ensure the claim form is signed by the policy holder.
During periods of unusually high claim volumes, claims may take slightly longer, but you can always contact us for an estimation. If your vet claims directly using Pawtal, claim times are usually much faster.
Alternatively, if your claim is related to veterinary fees, you can ask your vet to submit a claim on your behalf through Pawtal, our online claims system for vets. Pawtal enables vets to chat to our claims specialists and they’ll aim to review the claim within 24 hours of the vet submitting it.
How can I make a claim?
To make a claim on your pet insurance policy you will need to complete the relevant claim form for the treatment or incident in question and post or email this to us together with the relevant invoice and your pet’s full medical history (you will need to get this from your vet). Alternatively, if your claim is related to veterinary fees, you can ask your vet to submit a claim on your behalf through Pawtal, our online claims system for vets.
How long do I have to claim back my vet’s fees?
Your claim must be sent to us within 90 days of the first date of treatment you’re claiming for.
If you’re claiming for something other than vet fees, such as medication or complementary therapy, you need to submit your claim within 90 days of purchasing the medication or your pet having the treatment.
How do I know what I can claim for?
Your policy documents contain all the information you need to find out what is and isn’t covered by your policy, as well as your policy limits.
It’s important that you read your policy wording carefully so that you, and your vet, know what is likely to be covered.
Different policies have different limits and exclusions, so reading your own policy documents in full is very important.