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Columbia Personal Injury Lawyer > Moncks Corner Dog Bite Lawyer

Moncks Corner Dog Bite Lawyer

Usually, dog bites cause gruesome injuries. When dogs bite, their teeth usually cause deep puncture wounds as well as severe tearing lacerations. These attacks cause significant emotional injuries as well. Dog bites usually cause Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, especially among child victims. The Moncks Corner dog bite lawyer at The Stanley Law Group will obtain the compensation these victims need and deserve.

Usually, our team settles these matters out of court. However, settlement is a process, not a result. This process begins with a thorough case evaluation. South Carolina’s dog bite law is rather complex, as outlined below. Next, we collect evidence that supports your claims and refutes insurance company defenses. With this foundation in place, we are well-positioned to obtain maximum compensation for your serious injuries.

How a Moncks Corner Dog Bite Lawyer Builds a Case

Since the law tries to balance the interests of dog bite victims and pet owners, animal attack victims in South Carolina have several legal options, as follows:

  • Strict Liability: Owners are automatically liable for all animal attack damages if the victim was lawfully in that place at that time (more on that below). This law, like similar laws in other states, is so broad that it often alienated pet owner jurors, who see the law as a criminal penalty for rescuing an animal with a checkered past.
  • Scienter (Knowledged): Owners are also liable for damages if they knew the animal was potentially dangerous, yet they failed to take proper steps to control that animal. Evidence of knowledge usually includes telltale pre-bite behavior, such as aggressive barking and baring of teeth.
  • Negligence: Moncks Corner dog bite lawyers often file negligence cases if a third party is responsible for dog bite damages. For example, a daycare teacher is negligent if s/he allows children to play near a strange dog. In that case, the daycare’s owner is financially responsible for damages, under the respondeat superior rule.

The evidence in the case often dictates the approach. If a third-party witness saw the animal behaving aggressively, the victim probably has a very strong scienter case. Without such evidence, the best option is probably a strict liability case, especially since, in this context, “negligence” is more like “recklessness.”

Other evidence in dog bite cases includes prior attacks on animals or people, which is usually relevant to the amount of damages, and medical bills, which are relevant to both liability and damages.

Damages in a dog bite case usually include compensation for economic losses, such as medical bills, and noneconomic losses, such as pain and suffering.

Possible Defenses

Comparative fault, in one form or another, may be the most common defense in a dog bite case. This defense usually focuses on a warning sign, or the lack thereof, as well as the victim’s pre-bite behavior.

The failure to heed a “Beware of Dog” or other warning sign could support the assumption of the risk defense. However, this defense only applies if the insurance company proves, by a preponderance of the evidence, that the victim saw the sign, could read the sign, and could understand what the sign meant.

The provocation defense could apply as well, even in strict liability cases. Owners aren’t liable for damages when victims provoke animals. Significantly, in this context, provoking an animal is a physical act that’s almost like torturing an animal.

Work With a Tough-Minded Berkeley County Lawyer

Injury victims are entitled to significant compensation. For a free consultation with an experienced Moncks Corner dog bite lawyer, contact The Stanley Law Group. Virtual, home, and hospital visits are available.

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