Across the US, each individual state maintains different laws regarding dog bite injuries and animal attacks. Some take the approach of “strict liability,” which means that the pet owner is solely responsible for the actions of their dog—regardless of whether or not they were aware that their pet had a history of acting out violently against other people or animals.
Other states maintain laws that protect the pet owner more than the victim, however, and unfortunately, North Carolina upholds dog bite laws that lean more toward the latter. A victim’s ability to recover compensation after an attack is restricted by several different rules and exceptions.
According to North Carolina’s related statutes, a pet owner can be held liable for providing a victim with compensation in the event that they a) have let their dog, which must be more than six months old, run round unaccompanied at night, b) have prior knowledge of their breed’s tendencies and c) have prior knowledge that their pet is dangerous—meaning that the dog has previously injured or killed someone else, that it has been trained to fight or that is has engaged in aggressive behavior before the most recent incident.
Because these circumstances are extremely specific, it can be difficult to successfully pursue a lawsuit in the state.
This does not mean that it is impossible, however, as an experienced personal injury attorney will know what steps to take in order to reach a favorable conclusion. For this reason, if you or your child has been seriously injured by someone else’s dangerous pet, we urge you to speak to the legal team at Whitley Law Firm immediately.
We will be able to review the circumstances of the incident and figure out the most practical way in which to proceed with your case, so do not hesitate to get in touch with our firm as soon as possible. We are available by phone 24 hours a day, seven days a week, so call today to get started.