LIABILITY FOR DOG BITES & ATTACKS
Some states allow dogs to bite or attack one time without incurring responsibility on the owner, but not in Washington State. If you have been bitten or attacked by a dog in Seattle, Bellevue, or anywhere in Washington State, you can file a lawsuit against the dog’s owner. In fact, there is a specific law that states owners of dogs in Washington State are strictly liable for their dog’s bad behavior.
Dog owners in Washington State are held to the rule of strict liability for the harm their dog cause you. Strict liability means you do not have to proof that someone is fault. This is important because in virtually every other case you, as the plaintiff, have to overcome this initial hurdle in proving your case. This is not the case for dog bite cases.
This is due to the Washington State Dog Bite statute, RCW 16.08.040, which states:
“The owner of any dog which shall bite any person while such person is in or on a public place or lawfully in or on a private place including the property of the owner of such dog, shall be liable for such damages as may be suffered by the person bitten, regardless of the former viciousness of such dog or the owner’s knowledge of such viciousness.”
Oftentimes people who are attacked by a dog are left with scars and permanent injuries. This requires medical care that can require plastic surgery and other care that may require additional money be set aside in settlement. Pit bulls, Rottweiler’s, and Huskies are dogs most responsible for dog attacks on people.
If you or a loved one has been attacked by a dog, it is important to understand whether there is insurance involved. Oftentimes, if someone is attacked by a dog at someone’s home, there will indeed be homeowner’s insurance. If you are attacked by a dog at a business, the business might have coverage. Either way, it is important to talk to an attorney about your case.
Contact Chris Jackman today to discuss your case for a free consultation.