The severity of a dog bite depends greatly on the size and breed of the dog. However, even relatively small canines can inflict serious wounds, especially on the young or elderly. In addition to causing physical harm, dog bite attacks often cause fear and mental trauma. At the J. Stein Law Firm, we understand that you might be nervous or frightened following a dog bite injury. Rest assured, we are here to offer you personalized assistance throughout every stage of your claim.
Atlanta dog bite lawyer explains the state law
Georgia statute O.C.G.A. 51-2-7 covers dog bites as well as injuries caused by other animals. The law explains that in order for a victim to hold a dog owner liable for injuries, they must be able to show the following:
- The owner kept a vicious or dangerous animal,
- The owner had careless management of the animal or let it “go at liberty,” which resulted in the injury, and
- The bite victim did not provoke the animal.
If you are attacked by a dog, your first move must be to seek medical care. After receiving treatment, consult with an experienced Atlanta dog bite lawyer to find out if your case has merit.
Negligence law for dog bites
When it comes to dog bites and animal attacks, Georgia is a “negligence” state. This means that to prove liability, you must show that the dog’s owner knew the animal to be “vicious or dangerous” and did nothing to keep the dog from biting people. If you are bit by an unleashed dog in an area where a leash ordinance is in place, the lack of leash will satisfy the “vicious or dangerous” animal requirement. Lastly, you must be aware that if you provoke a dog, and are subsequently bit, the owner will not be held liable.
Statute of limitations for dog bites
It is vital that you contact an Atlanta dog bite lawyer as soon as possible after your injury. If you fail to file your claim within two years of the animal attack, you may be unable to recover any damages.