Melbourne Dog Bite Attorney
Serious dog bite injuries are a common occurrence. These injuries can occur any time you are around a dog. According to the Center for Disease Control, more than 4.5 million people are bitten each year. In Florida, more than 500 people are bitten bad enough to warrant hospitalization and on average two Floridians suffer from fatal dog bite injuries each year. The rates of injury are higher among young children.
If you’ve been bitten by a dog or other animal, call one of our experienced dog bite attorneys for your FREE LEGAL CONSULTATION.
Under Florida law, dog owners are strictly liable for injuries caused by their dogs. This means that negligence by the dog´s owner does not have to be proven. Florida Statute 767.01 provides, “owners of dogs shall be liable for any damage done by their dogs to a person…” This statute makes dog owners the virtual insurers of their dogs´ conduct.
Dog attack victims in the US suffer over $1 billion in monetary losses every year. According to the Insurance Information Institute, dog bites cost insurers $345.5 million in 2002, $321.6 million in 2003, $317.2 million in 2005, and $351.4 in 2006. The number of claims paid by insurers was 20,800 in 2002, but fell to 15,000 in 2005. The insurance payment for the average dog bite claim was $16,600 in 2002, but rose to $21,200 in 2005. Liability claims accounted for approximately 4 percent of homeowner’s claims. Dog bite claims in 2005 accounted for about 15 percent of liability claims dollars paid under homeowner’s insurance policies. Over half of the dog bites occur on the dog owner’s property.
Although dog owners are held to be strictly liable under the law, many homeowner insurance policies exclude coverage for dog bite claims. Toward that end, should a neighbor have a breed of dog which is known to have violent propensities and their dog or dogs are not being properly controlled, you may contact Animal Control and they will ensure that the dog or dogs are properly controlled, and in certain instances, properly insured.
If you or a loved one has been injured due to a vicious dog bite, you may be entitled to compensation for medical bills and expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages, and more. Our experienced dog bite attorneys can help you determine if you are entitled to make a claim. We offer FREE case reviews and only get paid if we win your case.