Americans own millions of dogs, and most are happy, docile and live for an occasional pat on the head or walk around the park. Not so with all canines, however. Some dogs are overtly dangerous and end up attacking people around them without any type of warning and without provocation. Injuries sustained during a dog bite attack can be quite serious, and some dog attack victims ultimately die from being mauled. Those injured during dog attacks often face months and years of medical treatment, surgical reconstruction and rehabilitation to recoup functionality and some semblance of normalcy again. If you or a loved one has been attacked by a dangerous dog, then you can collect damages as a result and hold the owner of the dog accountable for negligence.
In Florida, dog bite injuries are personal injuries, with some falling under premises liability law, depending on the circumstances surrounding the attack. There is a tight deadline in Florida that provides two years for any claims resulting from a dog bite attack to be filed. If your claim is not filed within the parameters of the statute of limitations, you can lose your right to recover damages. Contact your David dog bite attorney right away to get your claim started.
Statistics on Dog Bites
Americans keep roughly 75 million dogs as companion pets in our country, notes the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. While most love people and become as close to their owners as family, all dogs are animals with ingrained instincts that make them capable of attacking should they feel scared or believe their territory is being encroached upon. The unpredictable nature of dogs makes large dogs like pit bulls, German shepherds and rottweilers among the most dangerous dogs to own. Around 4.7 million people, which represents two percent of the population of the U.S., are bitten each year by dogs, and 70 percent of those bitten are children. Injuries of children tend to be more pronounced following a dog bite, due largely to a child’s smaller size and stature.
Strict Liability in Davie Dog Attack Cases
Strict liability is a concept of law that applies to Florida dog bite claims. The “one bite” rules that applies in many states is not applicable here; dog owners are strictly liable for the injuries their pets cause, even if the pet has shown no aggression and bitten no one in the past. There are two exceptions to this law: owners may not be held liable if the injured party provoked the dog or if the attack occurs on private property where the owner has clearly posted signage indicating the presence of a “bad dog.” In most other cases, strict liability applies, provided the injured person was authorized to be on private property or lawfully on public property.
While the owner is strictly liable in most situations, if the incident occurs on a rental property, then the owner of that property, or the landlord or property manager, may be at risk of liability for dog bite attacks if he knew of the danger presented by the dog and allowed it to remain on the property. Further, the landlord may be held partly responsible for the injuries in a dog bite claim if a condition exists that allows the dog to become dangerous to others, such as a hole in a fence that allows the dog access to passersby or others in the neighborhood.
Consultation With a Davie Dog Bite Attorney
Because of the often high-dollar value of dog bite claims, insurance companies defend them aggressively, which means that you need an aggressive attorney on your side. Consult with our experienced Davie dog bite attorney to discuss the particulars of your case now.