Lake County Indiana Dog Bites Lawyer
One of the most terrifying experiences individuals can experience is a dog attack. Many individuals are scared of dogs, and for good reason – they can do incredible amounts of damage in a very short period of time. If you or a loved one have been injured from a dog bite, you might be wondering what happens next. This is perhaps especially true if you have been significantly injured and aren’t sure how you can even afford to pay for your medical bills. Before you let yourself worry too much, reach out to an attorney experienced with dog bite law in the state of Indiana.
Dog Bite Lawyer Serving Northwest Indiana
Dog bite law can be a bit complex, so it is important that you make sure you are reaching out to an attorney who has the knowledge and ability to help you through the claims process. You want them to be an established entity, for example, and to have prior experience with dog bite cases in the state. Taking the time to research your decision will help ensure that you find the right attorney to suit your specific case and needs. At Semko Law Office, we are happy to help you with your dog bite case. As experienced and skilled attorneys, we will fight passionately to ensure that your rights are upheld and that you receive the compensation that you deserve.
Dog Bite Liability
In the state of Indiana, a dog’s owner assumes liability for the bite should a dog bite another person, with a few conditions. First of all, if the injured individual was on the owner’s property, they must have been there lawfully. The bite must also be unprovoked, which means that a reasonable person wouldn’t expect a dog to bite in reaction to their actions. If you are loud and aggressive, for example, then you might not be acting “peaceably” and the dog’s owner might not be at fault for the bite. Instead, you might be liable for your injury. The same is true of public spaces. If a dog bites anyone in a public space and was unprovoked, then the owner is liable for that bite and damages that result from it.
If the injured party was on private property unlawfully or provoked the dog into attacking, then the owners might not be held liable for the bite. If the injured party was on private property lawfully and did nothing to provoke the attack, however, then the owners are likely responsible for the bite. This is true even if the dog was not previously vicious.
Trespassers and Liability
In general, you must be on someone’s property lawfully in order for them to be responsible for their dog biting you. There are exceptions to this rule, of course. If the owner of the property is aware of that you routinely trespass on the property, for example, and they allow you to do so, then they might be liable should you be bitten while on their property. This is most often an issue among younger children who like to cross through backyards to get to their friends’ houses rather than using the streets or sidewalks. If property owners know that this is happening, allow it to continue, and fail to secure their dog in such a way that it cannot bite the person crossing their yard, then they might be liable for injuries that result from the attack.
Liability and Landlords
Although it is rather rare, it is sometimes possible for an injured party to recover damages from the landlord of a property rather than the owner of the dog who bit them. If the landlord was in control of the property and knew that their tenant’s dog was vicious, then they might very well be held accountable for the dog’s actions should it harm someone. This is not true in all cases, and there is no guarantee that a landlord rather than a tenant will be responsible for dog bite injuries. But it is important to keep the possibility in mind. If a landlord is on a property often and exercises control over it and is aware that their tenants have a dog who has acting violently before or who has escaped their fence and chased individuals before, then they might very well be found liable.
If you or a loved one were injured by a dog bite, reach out to Semko Law Office today! Contact us for more information.