There is no so-called “one free bite” under Pennsylvania law.
Owners can be held liable when their dog or other animal bites or attacks someone. This means the victim may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses even if the dog was previously thought to be “mild-mannered” or “good with kids.” It doesn’t matter if the dog never bit or chased anyone before.
All that matters under the law is whether the dog was confined by a fence or chain, on a leash or under reasonable control at the time. If the dog was running loose, there is little defense.
There Are Just Two Problems …
1. Dog owners may contest liability. They may try to say it was a different dog, that their animal was provoked or that the victim was trespassing.
2. Insurance companies may reject the claim or dispute the damages. More and more policies exclude “dangerous breed” dogs (e.g., pit bulls), or the insurer may refuse coverage for harboring a vicious dog that had attacked before.
Do I Have A Case?
Call our New Castle law firm at 724-761-2094 for a free consultation. We represent clients in Lawrence County and adjacent counties of western Pennsylvania.
The attorneys of Luxenberg Garbett Kelly & George are adept at making liability stick, documenting damages and making insurance companies pay. Through settlements and verdicts, we have secured the compensation our clients deserve for:
- Treatment of bite wounds (including painful rabies shots)
- Infections or nerve damage
- Permanent scars or reconstructive surgery
- Escape injuries (falling down or being knocked down)
In some cases where a dog was identified as dangerous because of prior bites or aggressive behavior, victims can also collect damages for:
- Emotional trauma (a young child or a severe mauling)
- Lost wages
- Harm to a pet or personal property
Contact Our Dog Bite Lawyers
Even if you think your injuries are not severe or think that you were partly at fault, you should still contact an attorney. We can determine if you have a valid claim for damages. Arrange a free consultation at one of five convenient locations. Call us today at 724-761-2094.