Can I Sue An Owner if I Am Bitten by Their Dog

Can I Sue An Owner if I Am Bitten by Their Dog

Dogs are humanity’s cherished companions and they hold a special place in our hearts. They are our faithful friends and loyal guardians, but what happens when our faithful friends bite someone? Dog bites are distressing incidents that can lead to physical and emotional trauma. Every year, about 4.5 million people are bitten by dogs in the United States. When faced with such an unfortunate event, many people wonder what their rights are and if they can pursue legal action against the dog owner. When thinking about pursuing legal action, it is best to first consult with a trusted dog bite lawyer.

Proving Dog Owner Negligence

To successfully sue a dog owner, you must demonstrate negligence. This involves proving that the owner failed to practice reasonable care when it came to preventing the dog from biting. A lack of proper containment, poor supervision, or having prior knowledge of the dog’s aggressive behavior are all factors that can contribute to a negligence claim. Prior aggressive behavior can include jumping on people or fighting with other dogs, as well as a previous biting incident. This is often known as the one-bite rule.

Strict Liability

In jurisdictions with strict liability laws, proving that the owner is at fault is much easier. If bitten by a dog, the owner is usually liable, regardless of knowledge pertaining to the circumstances of the dog’s history. Strict liability aims to protect victims by placing the responsibility squarely on the owner.

Documenting the Incident

Regardless of the legal route chosen, thorough documentation is key. Taking photos of the injuries, seeking immediate medical attention, and gathering contact information from any witnesses will be valuable in establishing the extent of the injuries and the circumstances surrounding the dog bite. Your first concern should be getting medical attention, but if you can do so, acquiring evidence as soon as possible will also improve your claim.

Defenses for Dog Owners

When the individual who was harmed is seeking compensation, dog owners may take on various defenses to mitigate liability. Common defenses to dog bite liability could include provocation trespassing of the injured party, or claiming that the injured party should have assumed there was a risk by interacting with the dog. It is important for you as an injured person to know how the defendant might try to pin some of the blame on you, so your lawyer can properly refute those accusations.

Talk to an Attorney for Questions About Suing an Owner After a Dog Bite

Once you have received medical attention, call a personal injury attorney at Jan Dils, Attorneys at Law to help. If we do not recover for you, you owe us absolutely nothing. We only take a fee for our services if we obtain a financial recovery for you.

While the ability to sue a dog owner for a bite depends on jurisdiction and specific circumstances, it is important to recognize your rights and the legal options available.

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Jan Dils, Attorneys at Law

Jan Dils, Attorneys at Law