Have You Been Bitten By A Dog?
Every year 4.5 million people are bitten by dogs. Even worse, the Agency for Health Research and Quality reports that over 300,000 visits to the emergency room occur due to severe dog bites in the United States. The state of Florida has specific statutes and laws that govern dog owners’ responsibilities and liabilities to those who are bitten by their pets. If you have been injured by a dog bite, you may have the right to receive compensation for your injuries.
Florida Dog Bite Statute
A dog owner in the state of Florida is liable for the injuries that are caused by their dog’s bite if the following is true:
- The dog bites a person, and
- That person is bit by the dog in a public location, or lawfully in a private location, and
- The dog was not provoked in any way by the person.
Strict Liability Laws
Florida’s dog bite laws fall under what is known as “strict liability” laws. This means that even if the dog owner had absolutely no reason to believe or know that their dog might bite or injure another person, they will still be held responsible and liable for the injuries related to that dog bite. Also, under Florida law, it does not matter if a dog has never exhibited violent behavior prior to the dog bite, the owner will still be liable for all injuries.
The only exceptions to this are if the person bit was illegally trespassing on the property, or if the dog was a military or police dog acting in the course of professional duties.
“Bad Dog” Laws
In certain cases, a dog owner in the state of Florida will know that their dog has violent or aggressive tendencies. However, a dog owner can be protected from liability for any injuries to another person from their dog biting someone else under very specific circumstances.
Florida Statute Section 767.04 provides that there is no liability to the dog owner if the following is true:
- The victim is over the age of 6 years old
- The dog bite occurred on the owner’s property, and
- The owner had clearly posted a sign in plain view saying “Bad Dog” or “Beware of Dog.”
Contact a Dog Bite Attorney Today
Dog bites are serious and can require even months or years of physical therapy and medical treatment. The state of Florida has strict laws governing dog bites and allows those injured to receive compensation for their injuries, medical bills, lost wages, and in certain cases even pain and suffering.
If you or a loved one were injured by a dog bite in Florida, the experienced attorneys at Roman & Roman are here to represent you. Our lawyers have over 100 years of combined legal experience and have recovered millions of dollars on behalf of our clients. Call Roman & Roman today at 877-767-1032 or contact us online for a free consultation. We serve individuals in Clearwater, Tampa, and Hudson.