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Dog Bites FAQ

May 8, 2024 – Michael S. Herman, Jr., Esq.


Frequently-Asked Questions Regarding Dog Bites in Florida

Do dog owners hold liability for a dog bite in Florida?

In Florida, dog owners are generally liable if their dog bites someone, regardless of the dog’s previous behavior or the owner’s knowledge of such behavior. Florida’s strict liability rule is distinct from the “one bite rule” that often allows a “free bite” to a dog before a dog owner is liable in some other states.

What is the statute of limitations for filing a dog bite claim in Florida?

Victims of dog bites in Florida have two years from the date of the bite to file a lawsuit against the dog owner.

Can a dog bite case settle out of court in Florida?

Many dog bite cases in Florida settle out of court. Consulting an experienced personal injury attorney can provide you with the right course of action for your specific situation.

Are there exemptions where a Florida dog owner might not be held liable for a bite?

If the victim was trespassing on the dog owner’s property or if the dog was provoked, the owner might not be held liable for a dog bite that occurred under such circumstances.

How do I know if I have a dog bite case in Florida?

Determining if you have a dog bite case in Florida depends on the specifics, including the severity of your injuries and the circumstances of the bite. It is wise to consult with an experienced attorney who can clarify your legal options.

What are common dog bite injuries that might warrant a lawsuit in Florida?

Common injuries from dog bites include puncture wounds, lacerations, infections, nerve damage, and psychological trauma, among others. Consult an experienced Florida dog bite lawyer to assess your case.

Is there more than one way to prove liability in a Florida dog bite case?

Besides the strict liability rule, proving negligence or negligence per se (violation of an animal control law) can also establish liability for a dog bite in Florida. Landlords may potentially be found liable for a tenant’s dog that is known to be dangerous if they had an opportunity to remove it. Review the details surrounding your Florida dog bite incident with your attorney to determine which parties may be liable in your case.

What should I do immediately after a dog bite in Florida?

Following a dog bite, seek medical attention, report the bite to local authorities, document your injuries and the incident, and consult an experienced Florida personal injury lawyer.

Can I seek compensation for emotional distress from a dog bite in Florida?

Injury victims of Florida can seek compensation for physical and emotional damages due to a dog bite. Emotional distress would be categorized under noneconomic damages. Discuss evaluation of emotional damages with an experienced Florida dog bite attorney.

Does homeowners’ insurance cover dog bite claims in Florida?

In many cases, homeowners’ insurance policies will cover damages from dog bites, but coverage can vary. It’s crucial to review the specific policy details. Some policy terms will exclude particular breeds that tend to be aggressive. Your attorney can help you assess the applicable factors in your unique dog bite case and determine the appropriate steps to pursue compensation.

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