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One Bite Laws

Every state has different laws when it comes to dog bites and dog injuries. While some states offer dogs and their owners “one free bite”, some states do not. Some state laws holds dog owners liable for the injuries their dogs produce. As a result — if you are bitten by a dog — you may be able to seek financial compensation for your injuries. However, not everyone who has a dog bite injury can seek compensation according to state law. Therefore, an experienced dog bite lawyer is essential to understanding the law, so you can choose the legal pathway that is right for you.

Some states follows a form of strict liability law for dog owners. This means that the dog owner is held strictly liable for a dog bite — BUT only if the victim suffers serious bodily injury or death. According to this law, the victim does not have to prove that the dog had known dangerous propensities in order to seek financial compensation. Compensation may be needed to pay for medical treatments, reconstructive surgery, rehabilitation and lost wages.

If you have sustained a serious bodily injury from a dog bite, it is important to contact a dog bite lawyer immediately. According to some state laws, you may be entitled to recover economic damages by filing a civil lawsuit against the dog owner or through skillful negotiation with insurance companies. Non economic damages (like pain and suffering) can not be recovered according to some state laws.

When a dog owner may NOT be liable:

There are circumstances when a dog owner may not be held liable for dog bite injuries. These include:

• If the victim was trespassing at the time of the attack.

• If the property is clearly marked with “Beware of Dog” signs.

• If the victim provoked the dog in any way.

• If the victim is a veterinarian or other dog care worker on the job.

• If the dog is a hunting, herding or predator control dog working on the property.

Dog laws can be complicated and difficult to understand. As a result, it is important to have an experienced dog bite lawyer on your side to help you navigate through the legal process after a dog bite injury. A dog bite attorney with experience litigating and negotiating dog bite injuries is crucial to obtaining the compensation you deserve after a serious dog bite injury.


This website is not meant to serve as legal advice of any kind and is only intended for informational, educational, and entertainment purposes only. As Personal Injury Law varies from state to state we recommend you seek legal advice from an attorney or law firm in your state. The information used on this website is copyrighted and used with permission by Dallas Norton, Esq. Denver's Personal Injury Attorney serving personal injury victims in Denver Metro Area and all of Colorado