July 25, 2019

Why Hire a Dog Bite Lawyer After a Dog Attack?

After being the victim of a dog bite, you may feel unsure of what to do next to recover the damages you have suffered. Because dog bites do not happen very frequently, understanding the rules and regulations surrounding dog bite cases in Michigan can be confusing and difficult to understand. An experienced dog bite lawyer at Cochran, Kroll & Associates, P.C. can help.

Laws that apply to Michigan dog attacks

The state of Michigan has three theories of liability that relate to dog attacks. The dog bite statute is the primary document showing these liabilities, but it is not the only legislation available. A lawsuit can also be filed under common law strict liability or file a suit which asserts the principles of basic negligence on behalf of the biting dog’s owner. In most cases, the principal defendant in dog bite and dog attack cases is the owner of the dog.

Michigan’s dog bite statute

Michigan is a state with a dog bite statute stating that an individual who has been bitten by a dog can file a claim for compensation from the owner of the dog without having to prove negligence.

Even if the defendant claims that the dog was not previously aggressive or vicious and had never bitten anyone before this attack, the dog bite victim is still eligible to file a claim for compensation.

This holds true as long as the victim of the dog bite did not provoke the dog in any way and was not trespassing on private property when the dog bit them. If these standards are met, the dog’s owner is liable for any injuries caused to the victim by the biting dog.

Dog bite liability defenses

The owner of the dog that bit you may try to claim that they had no prior knowledge of the dog’s aggression or tendency to bite people. However, because Michigan is a state that uses the legal concept of strict liability when legislating dog bites, this is not a viable defense against a claim.

The only viable defenses wherein the dog bite statute in Michigan does not apply are when the person who was bitten provoked the dog in some way (like teasing it to make it angry or prone to bite someone) or if the person was not on public property or legally on private property when the bite occurred.

Being lawfully on private property means that the person is on the property as a business customer, invited guest, or client; or, that the person is performing a duty imposed upon him or her by the laws of Michigan or the postal regulations of the United States. This means that a government official or a postal worker may not have been explicitly invited onto a person’s property, but they are still there legally under the Michigan dog bite statute, and therefore if they are bitten by a dog then the dog’s owner is liable for any damages caused by the bite.

Why hire a dog bite lawyer

Because dog bite law is not something, most people are familiar with, navigating the legal system alone while filing a dog bite claim can be a daunting task. Working with the team of expert dog bite lawyers at Cochran, Kroll & Associates P.C., you can rest assured that you are in good hands, and our law firm will work hard to get you the compensation you deserve.

Cochran, Kroll & Associates, P.C. has a history of working with clients who have suffered many different kinds of injuries, and their expertise and knowledge of Michigan law will serve you well as they help you fight your case. Book a free consultation with our law firm today at 1-866-MICH-LAW (1-866-642-4529).

Tim is a writer and editor who earned his Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from the University of Maryland and calls Washington, D.C., home after spending most of his adult life in the country’s capital. Although Tim spent most of his post-college years in the restaurant industry, he became interested in writing about legal matters after he recently moved to Colombia. Today, Tim writes professionally about medical malpractice, drug policies, and workplace injuries. Tim is focused on curating his freelancing career and plans to work remotely for as long he can.

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