You Won’t Believe How Much It Costs When Your Dog Bites Someone

You Won’t Believe How Much It Costs When Your Dog Bites Someone

The Fiscal Times/iStockphoto
By Beth Braverman

Boy, it can really smart when your dog bites somebody. 

Insurance companies paid an average of $32,000 last year in homeowner’s liability claims for dog-related injuries, according to a new analysis by the Insurance Information Institute (III).

But don’t think that’s your insurer’s problem. Filling one liability claim can take a bite out of your savings if you don’t have the right policy and push up your homeowner’s insurance premiums by an average of 14 percent, according to a recent analysis by

Dog bites and other dog-related injuries totaled $530 million and accounted for more than a third of all homeowners’ insurance liability dollars paid out in 2014. In addition to dog bites, the claims cover the costs of dogs knocking down children or bikers, resulting in fractures or trauma. 

The number of claims last year fell by about 5 percent, but the cost per claim spiked 15 percent. The cost of dog-related injury claims has gone up 57 percent in the past decade, thanks to increasing medical costs and growing judge and jury awards. 

Related: The Real Cost of Filing a Homeowners’ Insurance Claim 

California had the most claims in the country, with 1,866, while New York had the highest average cost per claim -- an average of nearly $57,000 last year. 

A separate report released Thursday by the U.S Postal Service showed that there were 74 dog attacks on postal workers in Los Angeles last year, the most of any city, followed by 62 in Houston, and 47 in San Diego. 

III recommends that dog lovers research the safest and most appropriate dog for their household or neighborhood before purchasing a pup and use caution when bringing a dog into a home with an infant or toddler. 

Or try a parakeet.

Chart of the Day: Long Way to Go on Coronavirus Testing

Healthcare workers with ChristianaCare test people with symptoms of the coronavirus in a drive-thru in the parking lot of Chase
Jennifer Corbett
By The Fiscal Times Staff

The White House on Friday unveiled plans for a new effort to ramp up testing for Covid-19, which experts say is an essential part of limiting the spread of the virus. This chart from Vox gives a sense of just how far the U.S. has to go to catch up to other countries that are dealing with the pandemic, including South Korea, the leading virus screener with 3,692 tests per million people. The U.S., by comparison, has done about 23 tests per million people as of March 12.

After Spending $2 Billion, Air Force Bails Out on Planned Upgrades of B-2 Bombers

The B-2 Spirit stealth bomber flies over the Missouri Sky after taking off from the Whiteman Air For..
© Hyungwon Kang / Reuters
By The Fiscal Times Staff

The Air Force has scrapped a planned upgrade of its B-2 stealth bomber fleet — even after spending $2 billion on the effort — because defense contractor Northrup Grumman didn’t have the necessary software expertise to complete the project on time and on budget, Bloomberg’s Anthony Capaccio reports, citing the Pentagon’s chief weapons buyer.

Ellen Lord, the undersecretary of defense for acquisition and sustainment, told reporters that the nearly $2 billion that had already been spent on the program wasn’t wasted because “we are still going to get upgraded electronic displays.”

Big Hurdle for Sanders’ Plan to Cancel Student Debt

Chip East / REUTERS
By The Fiscal Times Staff

Bernie Sanders wants to eliminate $1.6 trillion in student debt, to be paid for by a tax on financial transactions, but doing so won’t be easy, says Josh Mitchell of The Wall Street Journal.  

The main problem for Sanders is that most Americans don’t support the plan, with 57% of respondents in a poll last fall saying they oppose the idea of canceling all student debt. And the politics are particularly thorny for Sanders as he prepares for a likely general election run, Mitchell says: “Among the strongest opponents are groups Democrats hope to peel away from President Trump: Rust Belt voters, independents, whites, men and voters in rural areas.”

Number of the Day: $7 Million

NY mayor cites climate stance in endorsing Obama
By The Fiscal Times Staff

That’s how much Michael Bloomberg is spending per day in his pursuit of the Democratic presidential nomination, according to new monthly filings with the Federal Election Commission. “In January alone, Bloomberg dropped more than $220 million on his free-spending presidential campaign,” The Hill says. “That breaks down to about $7.1 million a day, $300,000 an hour or $5,000 per minute.”