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Being attacked and bitten by a dog can be a terrifying and traumatic experience. Although dogs are domesticated animals, they can attack after feeling threatened and they can inflict severe wounds on a person, especially if it is a larger dog. While owners have a responsibility to keep their dogs in check, they do not always do so. Even a visit to a friend or neighbor could result in a dog bite. Injuries, whether mild or severe, can be painful and can leave permanent scarring and tissue damage on the victim’s extremities or even their face.

If you have been the victim of a dog attack, you need to consult a Kinston dog bite lawyer who has experience in these types of personal injury cases and can determine if you deserve a better settlement than insurance can offer. An experienced personal injury attorney will be able to give you the best chance for the compensation you deserve.

Liability Statutes

North Carolina is a mixed statutory state, meaning that there are several factors a Kinston dog bite attorney must consider regarding liability for a dog bite case in which a person or their property (such as their own dog or pet) suffer damages because of a canine-inflicted wound.

Statutory liability holds the dog owner or keeper strictly liable in a dog bite case if the dog was over 6 months old at the time, was not accompanied by the owner or a family member, and was running loose. If these conditions do not apply to the case, the owners could be held liable. What is needed is proof that the dog is dangerous as one that has killed or injured a person in the past without provocation, a dog that has been labeled dangerous by authorities in the past, or a dog running unaccompanied at night that is over 6 months old.

These laws do not apply if the victim of the bite wound was trespassing on the owner’s property or if the victim was abusing, harassing, tormenting, or otherwise provoking the dog. Furthermore, the statute does not apply if the victim was attempting to commit a crime (such as breaking and entering) at the time of the attack.

Negligence

If there does not seem to be a statutory liability case, the victim of a dog bite may be able to build a case for reparations if it can be proven that the owner was negligent or negligent per se. The owner of a dog that is not considered dangerous or aggressive and attacks another person may be liable for negligence if they have breached their duty to the safety of others.

This means that the dog owner did not take the safety precautions considered necessary and common sense to a dog owner or handler in a similar situation. This can sometimes be more difficult to prove in court. In a negligence per se case, a dog owner may be liable for damages inflicted on a victim if they broke other laws regarding animal control in Kinston county, such as allowing an animal to run at large, meaning an animal roaming outside of the owner’s property without any restraint or without a person who knows how to restrain the animal.

The negligence per se liability is commonly applied in cases of dog bite liability in order for the victim to receive compensation for damages. Given the complexity of the laws regarding dog bites in North Carolina, it is in a victim’s best interest to have dog bite attorney in Kinston to help them through the process.

How a Dog Bite Attorney Can Help

A dog bite can cause serious injury and may leave the victim traumatized and fearful for the rest of their life. The pain and suffering that results from a dog attack should not be underestimated or diminished when the scarring and possible tissue or even ligament damage may lead to long-term pain and disability.

If you have been the victim in a dog attack, contact a Kinston dog bite lawyer who will help you reach a settlement that offers a financial compensation that is commensurate to your case.