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Dog bites can cause catastrophic personal injuries, including deep wounds and scarring – especially arm, hand, and facial scarring. Fortunately, North Carolina dog bite laws are favorable to those who have sustained dog bites and they provide the injured with several methods of legal recovery against dog owners.

All dog bite cases are different. A Greenville dog bite lawyer can review the facts and circumstances of your individual case with you, determine whether you have a viable case, and if so, help you to maximize the value of your dog bite case. Contact a skilled injury attorney right away to begin your case for compensation.

North Carolina Dog Bite Statutes

North Carolina’s legislature has enacted several statutes that apply specifically to dog bite cases. Under the North Carolina General Statutes, a North Carolina dog owner may be deemed strictly liable for dog bite injuries to human beings (or property) if the dog owner intentionally, knowingly, and willfully allows a dog more than six months old to run at large during the night while unaccompanied by the owner – or by a family member or some other individual.

A dog owner may also be deemed statutorily liable if a dangerous dog inflicted the bite injuries. In order for a dog to be deemed dangerous, the dog must:

  • Be over six months old
  • Be running at large during the night
  • Have injured someone
  • Have previously and officially been declared a dangerous or potentially dangerous dog

North Carolina One Bite Rule

Those bitten by dogs in North Carolina can also recover against a dog owner if the dog previously bit a person (or acted as though it wanted to) and if the dog owner had prior knowledge of the dog’s conduct.

Negligence in Dog Bite Cases

If the dog owner cannot be deemed liable under one of the above-referenced North Carolina dog bite statutes, then the owner could still be deemed negligent. A dog owner owes a duty of care to act the way a reasonably prudent person would act under the same or similar circumstances.

If the dog owner breaches that duty of care – such as by letting a known, dangerous dog run at large by itself – then the dog owner could be held liable for any injuries or damages that the dog inflicts on others.

Negligence Per Se

A North Carolina dog owner could also be deemed negligent per se for violating an animal control law. In order for an injured plaintiff to win on a negligence per se claim in a dog bite case, the plaintiff must prove the following elements:

  • That a North Carolina statute or ordinance created a duty which the dog owner should have followed
  • That the plaintiff was a member of the protected class which the statute or ordinance was designed to protect
  • That the dog owner breached the statutory duty
  • That the injury sustained by the plaintiff was of the type and interest which the statute was designed to protect against
  • That the dog owner’s statutory violation proximately resulted in the other party’s injuries and damages

Contact a Greenville Dog Bite Attorney

If a dog owner is deemed negligent or fails to comply with North Carolina’s dog bite laws, then an individual who has suffered from a dog bite may be entitled to full compensation, including compensation for medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, emotional distress, and mental anguish.

If you have been injured in a dog bite incident, an experienced dog bite lawyer can discuss your case with you and explain all of your legal options. You should feel free to contact an experienced Greenville dog bite lawyer at any time, via telephone or email, for an initial consultation.