What to do if my dog bit a woman and I paid the remainder of her bill, she now wants a copy of my homeowner’s insurance to pay back her insurance?

My niece accidently let out our dog bit a woman on her ankle. The woman brought us her medical bill for the bite. What she gave us was a statement (not itemized) and it showed a section for the previous amount listed as $852.00,and then below that was the remaining balance of $75. I asked her to give me an itemized bill and that I would pay. She recently contacted me saying that I need to give her my homeowners insurance to reimburse her insurance company stating that her insurance will go up because of this This does not sound right to me and I refuse to pay her insurance. Am I right?

Asked on July 18, 2012 under Personal Injury, Minnesota


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

You are not obligated to pay unless and only if the woman or her insurer sues you for unpaid losses or costs, or for reimbursement (an insurer can often sue the other party to recover the costs it pays out to its insured) and wins. If they initiate or threaten a lawsuit, you could elect to pay out of pocket or to turn it over to your insurer at that point (or to defend the case, if you wanted). You should, however, review your homeowner's insurance to see what your obligations are about notifying your insurer; some policies require notice to your insurer of any potential or threatened claim. If that's the case, you may need to notify your insurer so as to not violate your obligations. If you do breach your obligations, your insurer may be able to disclaim coverage and not pay if you should need them to.

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