Lifetime pet insurance — What is it and should you get it? |

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Is pet insurance with lifetime coverage worth it?

Make sure your pet's medical care gets covered into the twilight years.


Fact checked

Some companies will renew your pet’s policy for life as a benefit of buying pet insurance with them. But you’ll need to buy a policy before the company’s age limit for new customers. Despite the extra benefit, you might still see higher premiums as your pet gets older — your provider just won’t drop them after a certain age.

What is lifetime pet insurance?

Lifetime coverage is a benefit that guarantees you can renew coverage into your pet’s old age. It’s an automatic policy feature rather than an optional extra.

To get this benefit, you’ll need to buy a policy before your pet reaches the insurance company’s age limit for new applicants, such as 14 years old. Then, your insurance company won’t cancel your policy no matter your pet’s age as long as you keep up with your premiums.

Without lifetime coverage, a provider could decline to renew your insurance after your pet reaches a certain age. Lifetime coverage does not mean you’ll pay the same premium as your pet gets older.

How do I find pet insurance with lifetime coverage?

A company that offers lifetime coverage may boast this benefit on its website or when getting a quote to draw in new customers. Many companies won’t use the term lifetime coverage, but they may use similar phrases like whole life or protection for life.

If you can’t find it online, you can contact customer service to ask if the company will drop your pet’s coverage after a certain age. In addition, many accident-only policies don’t include an age limit for coverage since your pet faces less chance of needing a claim. You can likely buy and keep this basic protection no matter your pet’s age.

How do I compare lifetime coverage?

Get the most out of a pet policy with lifetime renewals. Along with lifetime coverage, look for these benefits:

  • Run the numbers. Reason through health problems your pet will likely get in their lifetime and the vet costs for each. These can be hereditary conditions or illnesses or injuries common to your pet’s activities. Then, see how the costs stack up to your pet insurance premiums.
  • Make sure hereditary conditions check out. Since you’re aiming to insure your pet for their life, understand the company’s stance on covering hereditary conditions. Most will cover them, but some outline exclusions or waiting periods.
  • Consider how you’re reimbursed. A policy that reimburses for each condition could save you more money for chronic conditions. That’s because you’ll only pay your deductible once for each condition in your pet’s life.
  • Look for locked-in premiums. You’ll only find a few companies who won’t raise your premium based on your pet’s age. But that benefit could help you afford coverage for years to come.

Compare pet insurance policies

Name Product Pets covered Seniors accepted Hereditary conditions Chronic illness
Dogs, Cats
For $19/month, access 24/7 vet support and $3,000 for one pet emergency a year.
Dogs, Cats
Cover unexpected vet bills from emergency exams, injuries, surgery and more.
Dogs, Cats
Enjoy extra benefits with coverage for exam fees, curable conditions and wellness visit reimbursement.
Pet Assure
Dogs, Cats, Horses, Exotic pets
Save up to 25% on all vet bills including wellness and dental visits for as little as $10/month.
Pets Best
Dogs, Cats
Get up to 90% of your vet bills reimbursed directly into your bank account. Plus, access coverage options with no annual limit.

Compare up to 4 providers

Does lifetime coverage cost more than other policies?

You won’t pay an additional charge if a company offers lifetime renewals since this is an included benefit. However, you might have more limited choices when looking for lifetime coverage. The limited choices and extra benefits could mean your total premium costs more than other pet insurance policies.

What impacts the cost of lifetime coverage?

Despite the benefit of lifetime renewals, your premiums may get reassessed each year at the policy’s anniversary or your pet’s birthday. Factors that affect your premium:

  • Your pet’s age
  • Your policy type and add-ons
  • Your pet’s breed
  • Any hereditary or congenital conditions
  • The cost of vet care
  • Your deductible, reimbursement percentage and annual limit
  • Other recent claims

Bottom line

Lifetime coverage is a free benefit that works well if you intend to keep insurance for your pet’s entire life. However, you can measure the other benefits each pet insurance policy offers to find the best one for you.

Frequently asked questions about lifetime pet insurance

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