Q. Who can raise money using Pet Chance?
A. Any pet owner whose US-based state-licensed veterinarian has provided a treatment plan/proposal, or who has already provided treatment for a pet, can raise money using Pet Chance.
Q. What does it cost to use Pet Chance?
A. It is free to create an account, register a Pet, and set up a Chance so you can request donations for your Pet. When you raise money, a 6.5% fee is deducted from the amount you raise to cover credit card charges and other operational costs. Pet Chance helps you raise the fee amount from donors too - so you have the opportunity to raise every penny you need for the treatment.
Q. When do I get paid after raising money with a Chance?
A. Pet Chance pays the hospital directly once treatment has been provided to the Pet. The hospital/clinic sends an invoice to Pet Chance and the invoice is paid within 30 days. In many cases hospitals require payment before treatment is made or before a pet is discharged. In such cases, and with advance notice, Pet Chance may make a credit card payment to your hospital.
Q. What if I've already paid my hospital?
A. Pet Chance is committed to fraud prevention, which is why we do not immediately send donations to pet owners raising money. However, in cases where a client has already paid a hospital, we will ask the hospital to refund you. If the hospital cannot or will not refund you, we will reimburse you for the amounts you've paid the hospital once the hospital certifies with Pet Chance that payment was made.
Q. Can I raise money for treatment that has already been provided?
A. Yes! Although some people will try to raise money for future treatment (ex. wait until the money is raised before performing dental work or some other non-urgent procedure), for those who already have a debt to a hospital, Pet Chance allows you to raise money to help with the debt. The treatment already provided must match the description you put in your Chance so donors are confident their money is going to the right place.
Q. If I cannot raise enough to pay for treatment that has not yet been performed, can I use the partial amount I raised to help pay for the treatment?
A. Yes! Ultimately, you are the one who has the financial obligation to your veterinarian. If you can raise part of the cost for a treatment and you can pay the difference (or if the doctor can fulfill the treatment for less money than origianlly quoted), Pet Chance funds can be used. In the end - as long as the treatment is provided to the Pet, the money raised with Pet Chance can be used.
Q. What if my pet needs more treatment in the future than I've raised with my Chance?
A. You can create an unlimited number of Chances for your Pet. So if you need more money in the future, you can create another Chance and try to raise it.
Q. What if I don't need all the money I raise with my Chance?
A. Say, for example, you ask for and raise $800 in your Chance, but the treatment only ends up costing $600. There will be a $200 balance available in your Chance which can be used for your Pet within 1 year for additional medical needs. If you do not need the balance within 1 year, the balance will be transferred to an account for the hospital/clinic where you received treatment. The hospital/clinic can then use this money at their discretion to help other pets!
Q. Is www.PetChance.org a non-profit?
A. Yes. On December 13, 2012 Pet Chance made the decision to operate as a non-profit organization. We incorporated as a non-profit comapany on January 2, 2013 and in June, 2014 we received our IRS 501(c)(3) status. Ask your tax advisor if your donations are tax-deductible. If you need a receipt please contact us. Note: You generally can NOT deduct donations made to Chances/pets who are part of your household or immediate family.
Q. How is Pet Chance different from other crowdfunding sites like Kickstarter, IndieGogo and GoFundMe?
A. First, we're focused ONLY on Pets. Second, by paying the hospital instead of the pet owner we reduce (eliminate?) the fraud occassionally seen on other crowdfunding sites where, for example, someone grabs a Google Images photo of a sick animal, raises money, and keeps it. (That's not the fault of the other sites; it's the fault of the dishonest user. But still...) Finally, our pay-the-hospital approach allows a lot of flexibility to fund ongoing Pet medical needs.
Q. Why does Pet Chance only operate in the United States?
A.Pet Chance is a recognized 501(c)(3) charity under the US Internal Revenue Code. As such, we are only permitted to make disbursements to US-based recipients. In the future we may apply for charity status in other places.
Q. Does the Chance Client (the pet owner) have authority over the money in the Chance account?
A.Because Pet Chance is a recognized 501(c)(3) charity under the US Internal Revenue Code, all discretion and authority for financial transactions is held exclusively by Pet Chance. Pet Chance maintains strict business controls to ensure money is appropriated properly and in adherence with the IRS code. Included in the policies is guidance to ensure donations intended for a Chance are paid for the charitable purpose of that Chance - which simply means if you donate to a Chance, your money will be used explicitly for that Chance until/unless the charitable purpose of the Chance no longer exists. Please contact us if you have any questions around this. We are proud of our transparency and our commitment to integrity and fairness.