Having a dog can bring lots of joy and companionship, but it also comes with responsibilities. One of the most serious legal implications is if your pet bites someone. Dog bite accidents are quite common in the United States, with an estimated 4.5 million incidents occurring every year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). This means that you have a 1-in-73 chance of getting bit by a dog in the states!
In this blog post, we’ll explore what happens when a dog bites someone and how you can protect yourself from potential legal action. We will also give information on what to do if you are injured by a canine in a dog attack accident.
Dog Bite Laws
In most states, dog owners are legally responsible for their pet’s behavior and can be held liable if the animal bites someone. This means the dog owner could face a civil lawsuit from the victim or even criminal charges in some cases. Depending on the situation, damages awarded to the victim could include medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other costs associated with the injury. Make sure you have insurance to protect yourself should your dog attack anyone.
Indiana Laws Regarding Dog Bites and Attacks
Here in Indiana, our state enforces the Strict Liability rule for dog bites. Indiana Code 15-20-1-3 decrees that, regardless of a dog’s history, if it attacks or bites another person, the dog owner and thus, their insurance carrier, is wholly responsible for the accident, making them liable for the injured person’s damages (medical bills, disfigurement, PTSD, etc.) if a person is on the property discharging a duty owed under law, for example, a postal worker delivering mail. Indiana law also states that any owner who fails to disclose the dangerous nature of their dog can face a lawsuit if their pet bites someone else. There are also other ways in which a dog owner might be held liable for actions by their dog. Again, make sure you have insurance!
Dog owners in Indiana should familiarize themselves with Indiana’s laws and make sure to take appropriate measures to prevent incidents from occurring as lawsuits can be both costly and damaging for all parties involved. When a serious dog bite incident occurs, it’s important to consult an experienced attorney who can advise you on your legal rights and obligations. A lawyer can also help you understand any laws in your state that might affect your case.
In addition to protecting yourself legally, here are some steps you can take to help prevent dog bite injuries:
– Make sure your pet is adequately trained and socialized.
– Ensure that your dog is always under supervision when around people.
– Make sure your dog stays appropriately restrained and confined,
– Never leave young children alone with any animal, regardless of their size or temperament.
– Spay or neuter your pet to reduce the risk of aggressive behavior.
– Check for signs of aggression in your pet such as chasing, growling, barking, or lunging at people.
Protect Yourself Against Dog Bite Lawsuits and Accidents
By taking these precautions, you can help ensure the safety of everyone in your home, guests, neighbors and minimize the chances of a dog bite accident occurring. Of course, no one can predict when an incident might occur or what mood your dog is in on a particular day, so it’s important for the owner to take the proper precautions and to be aware of the legal implications if your dog does injure someone.
What To Do if You are Bit By a Dog
Dog bites are no fun, and if you find yourself injured by another person’s dog, it can be overwhelming to figure out what to do next. First, you should call the police or animal control and make sure the appropriate procedures are followed. Second, seek medical attention for any physical injury or emotional trauma because of the dog bite accident. Depending on your specific situation and individual needs, an Indianapolis personal injury lawyer who is well-versed in dog bite cases may be able to provide additional help for your claim. A seasoned Indiana dog bite attorney can help advise you of your legal rights and options, advocate on your behalf, and work to ensure that the pet owner and their applicable insurance carrier is held liable for their negligence and any damages caused by the dog bite incident.
Are you or a loved one a recent victim of a serious dog attack in Indiana? Contact Craven, Hoover & Blazek, P.C. at 317-881-2700 to schedule a free personal injury consultation with an experienced dog bite lawyer in Indianapolis, today. We represent victims all throughout the state, as well as Indiana residents injured in other states and persons from other states injured in Indiana.
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