Can I Sue If My Child Was Attacked by a Dog?

Can I Sue If My Child Was Attacked by a Dog

Children are naturally attracted to animals, so it’s not unusual for them to want to pet stray dogs. Unlike adults, kids may not notice the warning signs that an animal is becoming agitated, and may be bitten as a result. When this happens, a common question parents ask is whether or not they can recover damages from the canine’s owner.

Local Laws and Ordinances

When determining who is at fault in a dog bite case, it is important to consider local laws and ordinances. Different jurisdictions have their own statutes in place regarding leash laws, dangerous breeds, or dogs running freely. The first step toward finding out who is responsible should be a review of these laws in order to know if there was a violation of them.

Local laws also differ as to when an owner can be held responsible. In some areas, an owner is not responsible unless he or she could reasonably have anticipated the pet biting. In other locations, dog owners are responsible regardless of the circumstances. A personal injury attorney can be a valuable source of information when it comes to evaluating local laws in order to determine liability.

Contacting Authorities

In some cases, children may be bitten by an animal that is roaming at large. When this happens, the proper authorities should be contacted so that they can attempt to locate the dog and its owner. Doing so is beneficial, even when the owner cannot be located, because it might prevent other children from also being bitten.

There’s another advantage to contacting the authorities, in that a record of the dog bite exists. This could prove very helpful in the event a child must undergo rabies treatment or suffers a serious infection.

If a ban on dangerous dogs exists, the owner of such an animal could face criminal sanctions. Although criminal charges would be brought separately, the fact that an individual was charged could go a long way toward proving liability for damages in civil court as well.

Actions after An Attack

After a dog bite occurs, it is important to seek medical attention, even if the bite seems relatively minor. Dog bites can easily become infected, so it is better to be safe rather than sorry. It’s also important to gather as much information as possible about the incident to include location, description of the dog, and the names and contact information of any witnesses. This information could prove useful in the event a dog bite case requires legal action.

Getting Legal Consultation

Dog bite cases are very difficult to win without a legal export fighting on your side. However, with a good personal injury attorney, you can win your case and receive justice. Schedule a free case evaluation today by calling 713-222-1222.

*Image courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net

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