Prince George’s County Dog Bite Lawyer

While they may be playful and lovable companions under most circumstances, domesticated dogs sometimes have wild instincts, especially if they believe another animal or person is threatening them or their owner. Unfortunately, the physical size of a dog does not always match the danger they could pose to humans. For example, even a bite from a small dog could lead to life-threatening infections, and the jaws of larger animals can cause lasting soft tissue injuries, broken bones, and permanent physical and emotional scars.

Although Maryland state law typically favors plaintiffs seeking financial compensation for injuries sustained from a dog attack, having a knowledgeable personal injury attorney’s assistance is crucial to preserving your legal rights. A diligent Prince George’s County dog bite lawyer could provide the guidance and support necessary to secure the best resolution for your situation.

Strict Liability for Dog Bite Injuries

According to Maryland Code, Courts & Judicial Proceedings § 3-1901, an owner—or the person responsible for handling a canine—may bear strict liability for any injury to a person or property that a dog causes. In this context, strict liability means that the injured party filing suit does not need to prove the dog owner or handler was negligent in a specific way that caused their injuries. Instead, they must prove that the defendant’s dog hurt them and that the canine was out of the owner’s control when the incident occurred.

Strict liability may apply to injuries caused by bites and injuries caused by other types of dog attacks—for example, a dog jumping on someone and knocking them to the ground. However, this concept does not apply when the injured party was trespassing or attempting to trespass on a dog owner’s property, committing or attempting to commit a crime on an owner’s property or against another person, or provoking or tormenting an animal.

This statute also establishes a “rebuttable presumption” that a person whose dog has injured or killed another person or animal before understands that their pet is dangerous and should take reasonable steps to ensure the dog does not harm anyone in the future. This idea is especially important in dog bite cases built on a theory of traditional negligence, another option for pursuing restitution that a seasoned attorney in Prince George’s County could discuss in detail during a consultation.

Recoverable Damages Through Dog Bite Litigation

Successful plaintiffs in dog attack claims may recover for all economic and non-economic repercussions of the incident in question, including:

  • Medical bills
  • Physical pain from injuries
  • Lost wages and future income
  • Lost enjoyment of life
  • Personal property damage
  • Psychological trauma

However, MD Code, Courts & Judicial Proceedings § 3-2A-09 sets a cap on recovery for non-economic damages that could vary based on the date on when a bite injury occurred. Additionally, as a knowledgeable lawyer in Prince George’s County could affirm, anyone who waits longer than three years to pursue compensation may miss the statutory filing deadline established under MD Code, Courts & Judicial Proceedings § 5-101.

Speak with a Dog Bite Attorney About Recovery Options in Prince George’s County

The steps necessary to recover financially after a serious canine attack may be very different for you than for someone bitten under a different set of circumstances. Accordingly, representation from experienced legal counsel can be key to achieving a positive case result no matter how your injuries occurred or how severe your ensuing losses are.

A Prince George’s County dog bite lawyer could discuss filing options and offer advice about next steps during a private initial consultation. Schedule a meeting by calling today.