Fort Lupton Dog Bite Lawyer
In the United States, over 36% of households own at least one dog. Negligent dog owners that fail to monitor dangerous dogs must be held accountable when the animals bite or attack people without provocation. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 4.5 million people are bitten by dogs each year.
If you have been attacked by a dog or pet and wish to hold the pet owner accountable for their disregard for your safety, reach out to an experienced attorney today. A Fort Lupton dog bite lawyer can help you understand your legal options and navigate your dog bite injury claim.
Fort Lupton Dog Bite Statutes
In Colorado, the dog owner is strictly liable for any injury or property damage the dog causes without provocation. Under Colorado statute, Col. Rev. Stat. Ann. §13.21.124, a person who suffers “serious bodily injury” or death from a dog bite is entitled to bring a civil action to recover economic damages against the dog owner, regardless of the dog’s viciousness or the owner’s knowledge or lack of knowledge of the dog’s viciousness. There is an exception to the law for police or military dogs, dogs working as a farm/ranch, herd, hunting dogs, or predatory control dogs on its owner’s property or while under their control.
Under this statute, the victim must be on the property lawfully at the time of the injury and did not knowingly provoke the dog. In addition to provoking the dog, an injured party may be partially responsible if the injured party trespassed or disregarded adequate warnings. Additionally, Colorado has a two-year statute of limitations for a dog bite injuries, requiring the victim to file a lawsuit against the dog’s owner two years from the date the injury. A local Fort Lupton dog bite lawyer experienced in handling dog bite cases and can advise you on how to proceed.
Proving Liability in a Dog Bite Case
Colorado’s strict liability statute only applies in cases where the injury involves substantial risk of death, serious permanent disfigurement, or impairments of a bodily function. Where there is no serious bodily injury, the victim must show that the dog owner was negligent. A person injured in a dog bite may recover economic (medical expenses, property damage, lost wages) and non-economic damages (pain and suffering, emotional stress).
Homeowners Insurance and Dog Bite Liability
Homeowners and renter’s insurance policies cover dog bite expenses up to the liability limits (generally $100,000 to $300,000). If the claim exceeds the threshold, the dog owner is responsible for all damages. According to the Insurance Information Institute, Homeowners insurers paid out $675 million in liability claims related to dog bites and other dog-related injuries in 2018.
Some insurance companies will not insure homeowners with breeds of dogs categorized as dangerous. Others are decided on a case-by-case basis, depending on whether an individual dog has been deemed vicious. However, once a dog has bitten someone and presents an increased risk, the insurance company may charge a higher premium or exclude the dog from coverage.
Reach out to a Fort Lupton Dog Bite Attorney Today
The damages of a dog bite case vary but can have substantial financial and emotional cost to the victim. Severe injuries could also result in future lost wages and earnings. Fort Lupton dog bite attorneys are on your side to help you recover from your injuries. If you or your loved one are seriously injured by a dog, consult your local Fort Lupton dog bite lawyer as soon as possible.