SALLY LE TRI: Pet insurer won’t pay for dog’s dental treatment
I have paid premiums to Petplan for my Staffordshire bull terrier, Bez, since I got him eight years ago. I now pay £33 per month.
He has a problem with one of his teeth and it needs to be removed under anesthesia. Yet, while the policy states that the teeth are covered, Petplan refuses to pay.
I had to pay nearly £2,700 in premiums to the company but now when I need to claim it tells me it is uninsured. I am furious.
GP, Sherborne, Dorset.
Biting: Petplan refused to pay for dog’s dental care, despite owner paying monthly premiums for eight years
You chose Petplan for your beloved Bez because you thought it was the best dog when it came to pet coverage, with its reassuring sales model that it pays 97% of claims.
You live alone and tell me Bez has been a lifeline during lockdowns, encouraging you to get out of the house for walks when you were at your lowest.
Although you didn’t have a lot of money to spend, you thought over £30 a month was worth paying to make sure you could cover the cost of any medical help he needed.
However, when you claimed reimbursement for treatment for an infected tooth (the first claim made since he was a puppy), Petplan would not pay a penny of the £450 bill.
I spoke to the company and a few days later they gave me an explanation: there was a ten month gap between your vet advising you that treatment was needed and it took place.
A spokesperson said: “The terms of our policy require that a dental examination be performed by a veterinarian annually and any recommended treatment be undertaken within six months.”
However, the company reconsidered the case and eventually agreed to pay for the treatment.
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Petplan Marketing Manager Isabella von Mesterhazy said: “As her vet did not raise any welfare concerns, we will pay the claim on this occasion.”
Although you were happy with this result initially, an unexpected clause in your policy came back to bite.
As Bez had turned eight before your recent policy renewal, you now have to split the cost of any vet bills over £90 at 20%.
This means the insurer will only pay £288 of the £450.
You felt mad barking for taking out cover and instead wish you were putting aside £25 a month in a savings account for all these years.
It’s a tough call to make. The cost of treatments increases every year and the savings pots can quickly be swallowed up.
You could play and win – as I did with my two cats who both recently passed away at the age of 17. I think I spent far less on their care than the price of pet insurance.
A friend whose (uninsured) 11-year-old dachshund recently ate four stolen lollipops from her daughter’s handbag – resulting in a £4,500 stomach operation (in addition to other costly incidents over the years ) – is not so sure that her bet has paid off.
HMRC fines granddaughter for tax she doesn’t owe
My 22 year old granddaughter couldn’t find a job during the Covid and therefore became a freelance beautician. She was earning very little, due to the blockages, so she stopped trading.
But now she has a problem with the taxman, which started when she submitted her 2020-21 tax return.
She read that if she earned less than £1,000 she didn’t need to submit a tax return.
So she wrote a letter to HMRC explaining her situation and sent it by delivery against signature on January 17.
On March 23, she received a letter, dated March 8, saying her tax return had not been received on time and included a £100 fine.
This had to be paid within two weeks, as the 30 day notice started when the letter was written, not when it was received.
My granddaughter sent another letter to explain. She didn’t hear anything, so she paid the £100 fine.
She also completed a self-assessment form, which showed she had spent £326 and made a profit of £406. This was posted with an appeal against the fine.
The appeal was dismissed and HMRC said there was no evidence of its online filing. This is because it was sent by post.
The letter also stated that tax was due. She hasn’t received a tax due notice, and on her meager profits she would expect to owe nothing.
And now HMRC has requested his tax return for 2021-22. She has worked full-time since December 2022. How will she convince HMRC of her position if they never respond to letters?
Prime Minister, Lincoln.
How, indeed? I intervened, and a few days later HMRC admitted their mistake and called your granddaughter to let her know.
It seemed an altogether less taxing form of communication than using the post office.
To the point
We signed up to Sky TV nearly two years ago as part of a deal which included a discount but it was never applied. I’ve tried contacting Sky about this issue, but can’t seem to find anything.
LN, via email.
You were entitled to a £12 reduction on your bills, but only £3 was deducted each month.
This means that you have overpaid a total of £171. Sky has rounded that up and added a £250 credit to your account.
I bought tickets for a performance of Les Miserables through ViaGoGo in March 2020, but it was canceled twice during the Covid closures.
It has since been announced for another date, but ViaGoGo will not confirm if it goes ahead, or refund me.
A spokesperson said customers are only eligible for a refund if events are cancelled.
As this was postponed, your refund request was rejected. Someone has now been in touch to offer a ticket for the new date or a refund.
One of my new hearing aids went missing recently but by the time I finally found it in my car I had ordered a spare and paid a deposit of £498.75.
I contacted Hearmore UK who canceled my order and promised a refund within ten working days. Four months later, I’m still waiting.
Hearmore UK transferred the money within an hour of contacting me. It looks like he asked his finance department to reimburse you, but no one did. A spokesperson apologizes for the late payment.
I have £20,000 with Aldermore Bank which I kept in a one year fixed term savings account.
It matured in June and the money was automatically transferred to another term account, which means I can’t access it for a year. But I need money now.
CT, by email.
An Aldermore spokesperson said the bank contacted you to warn you that the account would soon expire, but you did not respond, so the money was transferred to another fixed arrangement.
The bank has now agreed to release the funds to you sooner.
- Write to Sally Hamilton at Sally Sorts It, Money Mail, Northcliffe House, 2 Derry Street, London W8 5TT or email [email protected] – include phone number, address and a note addressed to the offending organization giving him permission to speak to Sally Hamilton. Please do not send original documents as we cannot take responsibility for them. No legal responsibility can be accepted by the Daily Mail for the answers given.
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