If you’re bitten by someone else’s dog in the state of Florida, you may in fact be entitled to compensation depending on the circumstances surrounding the incident. Generally in such instances, the liability, or fault, for the bite falls upon the dog’s owner, regardless of where the bite takes place. That said, in the state of Florida, liability for an accident such as a dog bite can be assigned via a percentage divided among multiple parties, so the dog’s owner may not be found to be 100 percent at fault if a jury finds that negligence on the part of the bitten party somehow led to their injury.
Under What Circumstances Might a Dog’s Owner Not Be Found Liable for a Dog Bite?
One example of a situation where a dog owner may not be found by a jury to be entirely liable might be if the owner of the property where a dog bite takes place has a large sign that says ‘Beware of Dog’ clearly displayed and easily readable. In a case such as that, the bitten party may be found to be negligent to some degree, limiting the amount of compensation they might otherwise be entitled to. This may also be the case if the bitten party was unlawfully on the dog owner’s property when the incident took place.
Should I Always Seek Medical Care in the Event of a Dog Bite, Regardless of the Severity of the Injury?
If you are bitten by another person’s dog, you should, without exception, seek urgent medical care as soon as possible. The bite may require stitches or other treatment if it’s serious. Even if it doesn’t need immediate treatment, it can become infected or later on become the source of long-term nerve damage. In the unfortunate event that something like that should occur, you’ll want contemporaneous documentation like medical bills and diagnostic imaging for the purpose of seeking compensation for expenses relating to your examination and subsequent treatment.
Should I Speak With an Attorney if I’m Bitten by Someone’s Dog?
Regardless of where you’re bitten by someone else’s dog, you should indeed seek the advice of a personal injury attorney without hesitation. Dog bites can be more serious than they appear, and even if they’re not initially serious, they can become so over time if infection sets in or scarring leads to nerve damage and lost wages due to time away from work. Should something like that happen, you may find yourself seeking restitution in court against a well-represented insurance company, in which case it will greatly benefit you to have a knowledgeable attorney in your corner.