Animal Welfare Professionals

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  • 1.  Foster Home Insurance Coverage

    Posted 07-25-2023 01:29 PM

    I was wondering with more organizations using fosters, how is your liability insurance set up, who is your insurance company, and what does it cover for fosters?  


    Susan MIller
    Director of Operations
    PACT for Animals

  • 2.  RE: Foster Home Insurance Coverage

    Posted 07-26-2023 04:39 AM

    I too would  like to hear feedback info on this as well??

    Mary Lou Maraganis
    Animal Rescue Konnection
    Gloucester MA

  • 3.  RE: Foster Home Insurance Coverage

    Posted 07-26-2023 08:19 AM

    Great question - look forward to hearing more.

    Allison Rathert
    k9.5 Rescue

  • 4.  RE: Foster Home Insurance Coverage

    Posted 07-26-2023 08:23 AM

    Hello there!

    For our shelter here in Colorado, due to PACFA, all foster families are required to carry their own home/renter's insurance to cover their home in case of accidental damage due to the animal. This can include but is not limited to spraying, marking, destruction of walls/doors, etc. The foster care agreement they sign also has a piece in it that says we as a shelter are not liable for any damages caused by the animal. Our shelter insurance doesn't cover volunteers in most capacities as far as I know. As far as barriers go to our foster program, that is really one of the only 'barriers' to fostering with us. The other being we require yearly home inspections.

    Shelby Bundy
    Shelter Manager- Programs
    Longmont Humane Society

  • 5.  RE: Foster Home Insurance Coverage

    Posted 07-26-2023 01:29 PM

    Foster-based rescue here.  Our commercial general liability policy specifically requires us to identify how many foster homes we have -- not identify them by address bc that's constantly changing, but the number -- and that's the upper limit of animals we can ever have in foster.  If we raise the number, the insurance goes up.  It covers liability for the rescue not for the foster (who's an excluded volunteer) but for others who might be injured -- e.g, if our dog were to bite a visitor to the home, which I hope never, ever happens.

    We also have fosters check with their homeowners carrier to verify there's not a breed restriction on their policy regarding GSDs as that's the policy that covers themselves. 

    The foster contract has specific instructions about communicable zoonotic diseases (like roundworms) and waives liability for such things as well as damage to premises for dogs in their care.  Our insurance carrier is very proactive about that stuff. 

    FWIW, I think any rescue that cannot afford liability insurance shouldn't be in business.  It's just irresponsible.....and it happens a lot.   I've known several rescues that had 5-figure settlements for issues that happened at adoption events, so we don't do those any more.  We had to pause operations for a bit last year when our carrier left the state and our agent couldn't find replacement coverage -- it's become really hard to find coverage in my state and took me a few months to find a carrier still writing shelter/rescue policies. 

    Maggie Thomas
    Red Stick German Shepherd Rescue

  • 6.  RE: Foster Home Insurance Coverage

    Posted 09-05-2023 10:54 PM

    Hi Maggie,

    I have a question on liability insurance and wonder if you can tell me what company you are working with. I am a trainer and have liability insurance for my service. I started to work with some rescue and am thinking of fostering dogs short term to work with them. I don't know if this is different from board and train but wondering what kind of insurance I should carry for fostering or board and train. Thanks.

    Julielani Chang
    The Life of Kai: Compassion Connections Inc.
    Davis CA

  • 7.  RE: Foster Home Insurance Coverage

    Posted 09-08-2023 10:02 AM

    @Julielani Chang - As a first step, I would check with your agent who sold you the trainer policy.    Trainers commonly do board-and-train at home, so it's possible that policy might cover you already (esp. if you're fostering as a pro-bono service to create good-will for your business, which many trainers do -- and at some point you'll likely have a chance to add paid clients, or do weekend-board-and-train upgrades for your group class clients who want to go on vacation and come back to a dog with some upgraded OB).    There might even be a low-cost rider that your agent could add to that existing policy.

    If that doesn't work, look into your homeowners/renters policy.  That might cover liability for your volunteer activities that are not associated with your business, but you'll have to check.

    If you don't have an agent, then start with Kennel Pak (for boarding situations):

    You can check with AWIP, but it's really for rescue orgs I think (but they might be able to customize a policy for your situation -- I'm not sure):

    Maggie Thomas
    Red Stick German Shepherd Rescue