Our dog bite injury lawyers in Michigan represent victims of dog attacks in cases for personal injury damages. Our clients include both adults and children and range from joggers to postal workers who are bitten by dogs on both public and private property. Injuries are often severe and include nerve injuries, fractured bones, and permanent disfiguring scars.
Quite often, a person suffers serious injuries when they are bitten by a neighbor’s dog. This happens when an unleashed or unchained dog runs onto the neighbor’s yard or attacks a person in the street or somewhere else in the neighborhood. It also occurs when one neighbor is visiting the other neighbor and the dog attacks at that time.
Legal Rights After A Dog Bite or Attack
A person bitten by a neighbor’s dog does have legal rights to sue the neighbor for the dog bite injuries. This can present an uncomfortable situation between two neighbors who had previously been friendly acquaintances, but the animosity often begins immediately after the attack when the owner of the dog is unapologetic or relatively unconcerned about the dog attack. In fact, the dog owner will often blame the victim for causing the attack.
Michigan law holds the person who owns, keeps, or harbors the dog responsible for a dog bite or attack, regardless of prior knowledge (called, “strict liability” laws) of the viciousness of the animal. Also, the negligence law is used to hold the owner responsible for the attack. This means that the dog owner is liable if the injury occurred because the dog owner was unreasonably careless in controlling the dog. The only defense to the dog owner in these cases is if the victim provoked the attack or was a trespasser on the property.
In these cases, the dog owner’s homeowner’s insurance company usually pays a settlement to the dog bite victim. Neighbors do not have to worry about the other neighbor paying a settlement out of their own pockets and insurance rates usually do not increase after this type of settlement payment. Therefore, if both neighbors act in a civil manner after the attack they can still maintain their relationship after the victim is fairly compensated for the dog bite injuries.
Contact Our Michigan Dog Bite Attorneys
If you or a family member has been bitten or attacked by a neighbor’s dog, you should contact our Michigan dog bite lawyers as soon as possible after the attack so that we can explain your legal rights to you and begin our investigation of the claim. We will represent you under our No Fee Promise, which means we do not charge any legal fees or costs until we win your settlement.
Get started on your case today by calling us at (800) 606-1717 or fill in the Get Help Now box on this page. We will call you shortly to discuss your case.