While many dogs are friendly and lovable companions, others are aggressive and even violent towards anyone they don’t recognize. Even dogs who are usually calm can cause serious injuries when they feel threatened in some way. Dogs can be deceptively dangerous to people of all ages. When you are by someone else’s dog biting you, they may be liable for various losses you’ll have to deal with as a result.
Getting the best possible resolution from this civil claim can be trickier in practice than you might expect, especially if you try to file suit without a seasoned personal injury attorney by your side. From beginning to end of your legal proceedings, a skilled York dog bite lawyer can make sure all your rights are respected and work tirelessly to ensure you get paid what you deserve for your damages. Founding Partner Jon Ostroff helped a client who broke her hip in an attack by a pit bull secure a settlement of $375,000.
When Are Dog Owners Liable for Bite Injuries?
Pennsylvania law takes a complicated approach toward holding owners legally liable for injuries their dogs cause to other people. It’s always worth discussing exactly how the court system might treat your specific dog bite claim with a York attorney. Owners are virtually always liable to pay for the medical expenses of anyone their dog injures through a bite, and their liability for other losses caused by this kind of incident can change depending on a few factors.
The easiest way to hold a dog owner liable for damages beyond short-term medical bills is by proving they were negligent in some way—for example, they let their dog roam around without a leash or didn’t fix a hole in their yard’s fence that their dog was able to escape through. Alternatively, when a dog causes extremely serious injuries through a bite or is considered a dangerous dog under Pennsylvania law, a court may find the dog owner strictly liable for an injured person’s damages.
However, dog owners may not be liable for bite injuries that stem from the bitten person taunting or provoking the dog. Likewise, it can be extremely difficult to successfully file suit over a dog bite suffered while trespassing on a dog owner’s private property.
Getting Paid Fairly Within Filing Deadlines
When a dog owner is found liable for losses beyond basic medical expenses, they may be held accountable for both economic and non-economic forms of harm, such as:
- Physical pain and suffering
- Emotional anguish and psychological trauma
- Loss of life’s pleasures
- Lost work income or future working ability
- Personal property damage
As is the case with most other injury claims, though, Pennsylvania law sets a filing deadline of two years after a bite injury occurs for your lawyer in York to file suit. Otherwise, your case may be time-barred, and you may not be able to recover any money at all.
Talk to a York Dog Bite Attorney About Legal Options
Getting attacked by a dog under any circumstances can be exceptionally traumatic, especially when you suffer a serious physical injury as a result. Fortunately, Pennsylvania law is generous in the rights it gives you to seek civil compensation from the owner of a dog that bites and injures you.
Working closely with a York dog bite lawyer can make a big difference in how effectively and efficiently you can pursue your unique claim. Learn more by calling today.