A dog may seem friendly and approachable. However, when you least expect it, they may bite or attack you. This may consequently lead to injuries such as lacerations, permanent scarring, broken bones, etc. Continue reading to learn what Florida law pertains to dog attacks and how an experienced Tampa dog bite lawyer at Merricks Law Group, P.A. can help you use it to your advantage.
Why might a dog bite or attack me?
A dog may not have a history of violence. Nonetheless, they may still act on instinct and bite or attack you. Below are common examples as to why they may do so:
- A dog may be protective over family members, children, or their puppies that you are approaching.
- A dog may be territorial over something that is valuable to them that you are approaching (i.e., their toys or food).
- A dog may be fearing for their safety as you approach them.
- A dog may not be feeling well and does not want you to approach them.
What law does Florida have on dog attacks?
The state of Florida has a strict liability law when it comes to dog attacks. Meaning, a dog owner is considered to be fully responsible for their pet’s biting or attacking of another person. This liability applies regardless of whether the dog owner knew about their pet’s propensity for violence.
Essentially, this law may support a personal injury claim you wish to pursue in the aftermath of your dog attack. This is so long as you can prove that you were attacked by the dog while lawfully on the dog owner’s private property. Overall, you must prove that the attack was due to no fault of your own.
And if your negligence played a partial role in the accident, then Florida’s modified comparative negligence law holds that you may still be eligible to sue the dog owner. The damages you recover from the dog owner may just be less than what you originally claimed.
What is the Florida statute of limitations for my claim?
First and foremost, you should take the time to properly heal from the injuries and damages you incurred from your dog attack. However, you cannot put the thought of filing a personal injury claim on the back burner for too long. This is because the state of Florida has a strict statute of limitations for this claim type; it is two years from the date on which you were attacked.
A missed deadline means a missed opportunity to sue. So you cannot ignore your potential dog attack accident claim for much longer. Instead, you must retain the services of a skilled Hillsborough County personal injury lawyer from Merricks Law Group, P.A. today.