Tampa Dog Bite Lawyer
If you have been attacked by a dog and suffered serious injuries, contact a dog bite attorney in Tampa for help recovering the compensation you deserve.
Like most accidents, dog bites usually happen unexpectedly and are generally caused when a dog feels threatened in some way, warranted or not. Dogs act on instinct, and with that in mind, it is the responsibility of the dog’s owner to ensure that their pet is within their control at all times, especially when in a public setting, such as a park where kids frequently play.
For this reason, when a dog bites, you may have the right to file a Tampa personal injury claim against the dog’s owner, depending on the circumstances of your attack.
At Anderson & Anderson, we’ve seen our fair share of dog bite injuries and have been successful in obtaining repayment for the damages our clients have endured as a result of these attacks. Your Tampa dog bite lawyer will do everything possible to build a strong case against the appropriate party so you have access to the funds you need to begin to rebuild your life after a dog attack.
Culpability When a Dog Bites
In several states, a dog owner can avoid being found liable for the damages their pet inflicts if their dog has never bitten before nor demonstrated a propensity for aggression or violence in any way. However, this is not the case in Florida.
Florida has a strict liability law for dog bite incidents. This means that the dog owner will be held strictly liable for the injuries sustained by those attacked by their dog, regardless of whether there is a previous history of aggression or bites. Your attorney need only establish that the dog in question is directly responsible for your injuries in order to be successful in court.
Exceptions to Strict Liability
Although strict liability is the law, there are a couple of exclusions under which the dog’s owner will not be required to cover your losses if you’re attacked by their animal.
First, strict liability only applies to individuals in a public setting and those who are invited guests at the dog owner’s place of residence. If you were trespassing on their property when you were bitten, you will not have the option of pursuing a personal injury claim.
In addition to the trespassing exclusion, if the dog in question attacked you because your provoked it to act aggressively, you may also be ineligible for compensation from the dog’s owner or have your awarded reduced by your shared fault for the cause of the attack, depending on several factors, including whether you were intentionally provoking the dog.
What’s more, a dog that attacks someone in defense of their owner or someone they perceived to be a danger will usually not be deemed a dangerous dog, and the person bitten will typically not be successful in bringing a claim against the dog’s owner.
Obtaining Repayment for Your Personal Losses
Though it is certainly important to establish liability so the dog’s owner is held accountable for their pet, the main purpose in the pursuit of a dog bite claim is to secure compensation for everything you’ve been through.
It’s especially important that we pay close attention to your medical expenses, as the cost of healthcare is substantial in Tampa and across the state of Florida.
Your lawyer will ensure that your hospital bills, diagnostic imaging, ambulance fees, co-pays, and other medical expenses are all accounted for when determining what your claim is worth. Beyond consideration of the recovery of your healthcare costs, your attorney can also include repayment for:
- Pain and suffering
- Lost income
- Emotional distress
- Loss of household services
- Damage to your future earning potential
- Lost quality of life
Additionally, if the dog has a history of biting, it’s possible that you could be awarded punitive damages as a way for the court to impose a punishment of their own against the dog’s owner.
Work with a Dog Bite Attorney in Tampa
When you’ve been attacked by a canine and need assistance seeking the compensation that’s rightfully yours from the dog’s owner, reach out to an experienced Tampa dog bite lawyer at Anderson & Anderson.
We proudly offer dog bite victims in Tampa a complimentary consultation where you can meet with your attorney and discuss the individual details of your attack and resulting injuries. To schedule yours, just submit the online contact form we have provided below or give our office a call at 813-251-0072.