Florida Dog Bite Laws 101

Dog bites are common in most every state, accounting for approximately a third of home insurance claims in recent years. By understanding dog bite laws in their state, consumers will know what to do if they find themselves on the receiving end of a dog attack. If you live in Florida, the following synopsis of Florida’s dog bite laws can be helpful when seeking compensation for your injuries.

Florida’s dog bite laws can be divided into two categories: strict liability and negligence:

  • Strict Liability: Florida, New Jersey, Ohio and California are just a few of the states that have adopted strict liability dog bite laws to protect residents and visitors from dog attacks. Under these laws, dog owners are responsible for injuries their dog causes. If you were to be attacked by a dog in a public place or on the dog owner’s property (with owner permission), the owner will be held liable for any injuries you sustain. This means owners are responsible to pay for medical costs related to your injuries or pay compensation for damages.

If you were intruding on a dog owner’s property, however, without his permission at the time of the attack, the owner may not be held liable for damages. Dog owners may also not be held responsible for dog bites that occur due to people teasing, hitting or in some manner provoking their dog to attack. Consumers should be aware that they also share responsibility when it comes to liability for dog attacks.

  • Negligence: Florida dog bite laws also protect people against dog attacks caused by owner negligence. Negligence may come in the form of walking a dog in a public area without a leash, turning a dog loose on private property while people are visiting or not adequately securing the dog’s pen or yard, resulting in the animal’s escape and biting someone passing by.

Dog owners are responsible for the actions of their dog. Any neglect on their part could result in their dog causing others harm. If you’re bitten by a dog due to owner negligence, you can sue for damages.

In addition to causing physical harm, dog attacks can have traumatizing effects on victims for years to come. A serious attack can cause permanent injuries or disability that victims have to live with for the rest of their days. With the help of a personal injury lawyer in Brandon, FL, dog attack victims can receive compensation for their ordeal.