Unfortunately, a dog may have attacked you because their owner improperly trained them, wrongfully permitted you to approach them, or otherwise. But no matter what the case was, you must fight back by suing the negligent dog owner. Continue reading to learn what action to take after you have been attacked and how one of the experienced Panama City dog bite attorneys at Manuel & Thompson, PA can help you achieve a successful claim.
What legal action can I take after a dog attack?
Of note, the state of Florida has laws in place that consider dog owners to be virtual insurers of their pets; which means that they are considered to be strictly responsible for the actions of their pets. More specifically, these statutes hold that owners of dogs shall be liable for any damage done by their dogs to a person.
That said, after your dog attack, you may file a personal injury claim against a dog owner. For your claim, you must prove that the following circumstances are fact:
- The defendant was the dog owner in question, and therefore owed you a duty of care.
- The dog owner knew, or should have reasonably known, about the pattern of violence their dog has exhibited.
- The dog owner breached their duty of care when they failed to disclose said pattern of violence, and instead allowed you to approach their dog.
- The dog owner’s pet bit or attacked you upon your encounter with them.
- You incurred serious injuries and damages as a direct result of this dog bite or attack.
What arguments might the defendant make in my claim proceedings?
You must prepare for the pushback you may receive from the defendant in your claim proceedings. That is, they may speak out and address the following circumstances:
- The defendant may argue that you were teasing their dog in the moments leading up to the attack.
- The defendant may argue that you illegally trespassed onto their private property to pet their dog.
- The defendant may argue that you should have assumed the risk that came with approaching their dog.
- The defendant may argue that no bite or injury actually occurred in the alleged dog attack.
You must disclose with your attorney whether any of the aforementioned defenses may reign true; this is so the appropriate rebuttals and overall legal strategy can be prepared. At the very least, if you are still found to be less than 50 percent at fault, then you must just receive a lesser payout for your monetary damages.
In the end, you cannot ignore your potential dog bite accident claim for much longer. Instead, you must retain the services of one of the skilled Panama City personal injury attorneys from Manuel & Thompson, PA today.