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Dog Bites & Homeowners Claims

Osterhout Berger Daley > Practice Areas  > Personal Injury > Dog Bites & Homeowners Claims

Understanding Dog Bites

Dogs are cherished companions in countless homes, often considered as part of the family. However, even the most well-behaved canine can be unpredictable at times. When dog bites occur, they can result in significant physical and emotional trauma for the victims, invoking legal implications for the dog owners.


The Reality of Dog Bites

Dog bites can range from minor nips to severe maulings. The aftermath of a bite can include:

  • Physical Injuries: Such as puncture wounds, lacerations, fractures, and in severe cases, permanent disfigurement.
  • Infections: Dog bites can lead to bacterial infections, including rabies, if the dog hasn’t been properly vaccinated.
  • Psychological Impact: Victims, especially children, may develop a fear of dogs or experience post-traumatic stress.


Homeowners Insurance and Dog Bites

Many homeowners’ insurance policies provide coverage for liabilities, including dog bites that occur on the insured property. When a dog bite incident happens:

  • Reporting the Incident: The dog owner should promptly report the bite to their insurance company.
  • Claim Evaluation: The insurance company evaluates the claim, investigating the circumstances of the bite.
  • Coverage Limits: Depending on the policy’s limit, the insurance may cover medical bills, rehabilitation costs, and even compensation for pain and suffering.

However, it’s essential to note that some insurance policies may exclude specific breeds deemed “high risk” or may not provide coverage for repeated incidents.


Legal Aspects of Dog Bites

While homeowners’ insurance can cover the financial aspects, the legal implications are broader. Many states operate under “strict liability” for dog bites, meaning the owner is liable regardless of the dog’s previous behavior. However, nuances in laws, such as provocation or trespassing, can influence the outcome of a claim.


Navigating the Complexities of Dog Bite Claims

Dog bite incidents, while emotionally charged, require a nuanced approach when seeking justice and compensation. At Osterhout Berger Daley, our experienced attorneys are well-versed in the intricacies of dog bite claims and homeowners’ insurance policies in Florida. Our commitment is to ensure that victims receive fair compensation and that their rights are upheld. If you or a loved one has experienced a dog bite incident, we’re here to provide the support and representation you need. Reach out to us today, and together, we’ll work towards a resolution that acknowledges your pain and seeks justice.

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