If you have pet insurance, you should be able to claim back some, or all, of the costs of your pet's treatment with us. We do not routinely claim directly from the insurance company as we ask clients to pay for their pet’s treatment at the time of collection, but we are very happy to assist you in claiming back your fees.
In order to make a claim against your insurance, please bring along a claim form at the time of your pet's appointment. These can usually be downloaded from your insurer's website, or you may need to call them to request a form. Please ensure that you have filled in all relevant sections and signed the form before handing in to us, as this will help to expedite the claims process.
Once you have made payment for your pet's treatment with us, we will process and submit the claim promptly to your insurers. Where possible, we will submit the claim digitally. For your information, we may keep a copy of the claim form and your insurance details on file to assist if there are any future queries regarding the claim.
As the claim we submit we will be a continuation for the initial treatment you have received at your regular veterinary practice, we would advise putting a claim through with them prior to your visit here. If, however, our claim is received first this should not cause a problem and any fixed excess should be deducted from the first claim received. Please be aware that we cannot include treatment carried out elsewhere in the claim we submit.
If you have any concerns about whether treatment will be covered, we would advise you to contact your insurer prior to your initial visit to us. Likewise, they will be able to advise you on any deductions made against your claim once payment is made to you.
In the occasional instances where clients cannot pay us personally and claim their money back from their insurers, we may consider a direct insurance claim upon completion of a pre-authorisation from your insurance company. In order to do this, you will need to contact your insurance company directly to request a pre-authorisation. Once they have received this request from you, your insurers will contact Hamilton Specialist Referrals to ask for an estimate and any clinical history we have on your pet. Once they have all the necessary information, your insurers will assess the potential claim and will contact you, as the policy holder, and Hamilton Specialist Referrals to inform us both on whether or not they will accept the claim and how much they will cover financially. So long as everything is approved by your insurers, we would then be happy to do a direct claim with them once you have signed our direct claim request form. By signing this form, you agree to our financial terms and accept liability for all fees and costs relating to your pet’s treatment.
Some insurance companies, such as John Lewis, More Than, Tesco, Homebase, Marks & Spencer and Argos are underwritten by the RSA Insurance Group, which has a favoured network of referral practices. Hamilton Specialist Referrals, like the majority of other large specialist hospitals in the UK, is not on this list. The position taken by The British College of Veterinary Specialists, of which all of our Consultants are members, is that these lists may limit referral options for owners and referring vets. There are also some non-specialists on the list.
If you are insured with one of the above companies you can still be referred to us and will still be able to claim back your pet’s treatments, but the RSA will charge you as the policy holder an extra £200 excess for going to a referral hospital which is not part of the RSA Referral Network scheme. We don’t think it is fair on our clients to be penalised for this, so we help you to contest this. You can download our RSA Letter of Dispute Template here. If this appeal is unsuccessful, we will deduct this £200 from the final bill or refund it back to you. If you are insured with one of the above insurance companies please inform our Client Care Team when you book your appointment.
If your pet is not insured, we will require a 50% or £2000 deposit at the time of admission and the remaining amount will need to be paid at the time of collection.
Before your pet’s procedure, you will need to sign our financial consent form. This form stipulates that you, as the owner, are responsible for all costs of your pet’s treatment at Hamilton Specialist Referrals, whether your pet is insured or not. By signing this form, you agree to our financial terms and accept liability for all fees and costs relating to your pet’s treatment.
If your pet is not insured and you are unable to cover the costs yourself, we may be able to put you in touch with a veterinary loan supplier who may be able to assist you with the costs, subject to their credit checks. Please give us plenty of notice if you think this may be your only payment option.
You can read Hamilton Specialist Referrals' full terms and conditions here.