4 Facts About Georgia Dog Bite Laws Victims Need To Know
Americans love their household pets, but dogs tend to come out on top when it comes to the most popular animal companions among families. According to the Insurance Information Institute (III), an estimated 69 million homes have a canine, though some reports indicate that up to 85 million dogs are living in US households. For the most part, these furry friends live up to their reputation as loyal, loving pets. Still, there are around 4.5 million people that suffer dog bites, mauling, or knockdowns every year.
Like every other US state, Georgia law protects victims of dog bites by providing legal remedies. You may qualify to recover compensation, though the body of laws that applies to these cases is massive. You put your rights at risk if you try to tackle them on your own, so trust an Atlanta dog bite lawyer to assist with your claim. Knowing a few of the key points is also helpful.
- Two Types of Liability for Dog Bites: There are two theories that you can proceed upon when seeking compensation, and the “one-bite” rule may be familiar. Under this concept, you can recover damages when the owner knew or should have known that the animal could be dangerous. This knowledge is imparted if the dog had bitten before, hence the one-bite terminology.
Georgia also has a dog bite statute that holds an owner liable for carelessly managing the animal, such as allowing it to roam freely or violation of a leash law.
- Statute of Limitations: There is a time restriction on all personal injury cases in Georgia, including dog bite claims. You must file a lawsuit within 2 years after being attacked, and the clock starts to run on the date that you were injured. If you do not initiate litigation in court, you are forever barred from obtaining compensation for your losses.
- Laws on Trespassing: Georgia laws take into account the conduct of the victim when assessing liability for dog bites, so you are prohibited from recovering damages if you were trespassing at the time of the attack. Likewise, you harm your rights by provoking, teasing, or tormenting the dog.
- Damages for Victims of Dog Bites: Compensation in these cases aims to put the victim in the same position as if the attack had never taken place, at least to the greatest extent possible. Depending your situation, you may be eligible for:
- Costs for medical treatment, including hospitalization, emergency care, and cosmetic surgery;
- Psychiatric care, since many victims suffer from a life-long fear of dogs after a bite;
- Lost wages;
- Pain and suffering;
- Scarring and disfigurement; and,
- Losses based upon how dog bite injuries affect your quality of life.
Trust a Georgia Dog Bite Attorney for Legal Help
For more information about the laws that apply to your claim, please call Zagoria Law to speak to a member of our team. You can call 404.653.0023 or visit us online today to set up a free consultation. After reviewing your circumstances, an Atlanta dog bite lawyer can provide additional details.