No matter how much an owner thinks they know their dog, all animals can be unpredictable at times. Even the most docile creatures can snap under certain circumstances, with seemingly no warning. Dog bites, while usually minor, can sometimes cause serious damage. When faced with a perceived threat, their bite force is surprisingly strong. If you’ve been injured by a dog or other animal bite, call Elstein Legal in Florida as soon as possible to set up your free consultation.
Determining Liability for Dog Bites in Hialeah
Florida law holds dog owners accountable for damages their dogs inflict, for the most part. The law states that if the victim is in a public place, or on private property with permission, the dog’s owner is responsible for damages that have been suffered by the person who was bitten – even if the owner did not know the dog was aggressive. Exceptions to this liability include:
- If the owner had a legible, easily seen sign with the words “Bad Dog” on it displayed at the time of the incident
- If the person who was bitten was on private property without permission
- If the bite was a result of the victim’s negligence
If the bite was the fault of the person who was bitten, the liability will be taken away from the owner for the percentage that the person’s negligent actions contributed to the attack. For example, if someone’s dog bites you, but the court determines that you were 50% responsible for your $10,000 in damages, the owner will need to pay you $5,000.
Steps to Take After a Dog Bite
Dog bites are fairly common in Florida. In 2018 alone, Florida recorded 1,281 claims for dog bites or other serious dog-inflicted injuries. If this happens to you, it’s helpful to know the steps to take to reduce the risk of infection and hold the dog’s owner accountable.
- First and foremost, examine your injuries. If the skin is broken but the wound is minor, you need to wash it with soap and water immediately to prevent infection. If you’re bleeding heavily, don’t wait to get medical attention.
- Collect any information you can from the dog’s owner, and try to get a picture of the dog if possible. Also, take a picture of the bite wound.
- Next, report the bite to either animal control or the local police. Be as detailed as possible in your report, and ask for a copy of the report if you can.
- Call a personal injury attorney to seek damages for your injury.
Why Choose Elstein Legal to Represent your Case?
Since opening Elstein Legal in 2018, Miami personal injury attorney Brian L. Elstein has recovered millions on behalf of his deserving clients. A cum laude graduate of Nova Southeastern University, Brian Elstein honed his skills early as a member of the Nova Trial Association.
Today, he is recognized by The National Trial Lawyers as a Top 40 Under 40 Lawyer in Florida and has been selected to the 2022-2023 Florida Rising Stars list by Super Lawyers Magazine – a distinction given to only 2.5% of attorneys in Florida, and named 2022 Best Litigation Attorney by Expertise.com.
Contact Us for a Free Consultation
If you have injuries due to someone else’s negligent behavior, you deserve compensation to help recover from your injuries. At Elstein Legal, we can help you with all aspects of your claim, including going to trial if necessary to ensure you get what you need.
Call us at (305) 299-2835 or contact us today for a free consultation to discuss your case. There is no fee unless we win your case.