Dog Bite Attorneys in Atlanta
Holding Negligent Dog Owners in Tucker Accountable
Dog bite lawyers in Atlanta are assisted by very specific state and local laws regarding a dog owner’s responsibility to their animal and to the public in general. Fences and kennels must be properly maintained, dogs must be leashed at all times when they may come into contact with the public, and the public must be warned if there is a dangerous animal in the near vicinity with very specific signage. If a dog owner fails to abide by these and many other Georgia and local regulations, and their dog harms another individual, the dog owner will be held liable for the injuries and harm to that individual. An attorney can help you recover damages if you have been bitten by a dog.
When Is a Georgia Dog Owner Responsible for Dog Bites?
Negligence in a dog attack is not always easy to prove, and since the penalties for the owner of the animal generally involve the loss of the animal as well as fines or perhaps jail time, you can expect that the negligent party will not be willing to acknowledge any liability. In order to prove that the dog owner was negligent in the handling of an animal, you and your lawyer will have to gather evidence to prove your case.
A dog owner may be deemed negligent in cases where:
- The owner has previous knowledge that the dog can become vicious.
- The owner takes no reasonable care to protect the general public from the dog.
- The owner does not take reasonable care in the restraint of the dog.
- The owner willfully allows the dog to attack another individual.
- The dog, leashed or not, bites an individual who did not provoke the dog and was rightfully occupying the space where the dog bite occurred (such as a public park).
Does Georgia have a “One-Bite Rule?”
The answer is yes. But, the rule does not actually allow every dog to have one "free" bite before the owner is responsible.
The so-called "one-bite rule" comes from old laws that did not hold a dog owner responsible the first time an animal bit or injured someone. The general idea was that, after a dog showed it had a propensity to bite, the owner should then know the dog was potentially dangerous. Most jurisdictions now recognize that, even if a dog has never actually bitten anyone in the past, the owner is still responsible for protecting the public if the owner has reason to believe that the animal could become vicious and attack someone. So now, in Georgia and most other states that still follow the rule, the "one-bite rule” can hold an owner responsible for your injuries even if the dog had not actually bitten someone previously.
It is not always easy to show that an owner had previous knowledge of the potential for their dog to bite someone, but a proficient dog attack attorney, through witness statements and medical or veterinary records, can find evidence of such prior knowledge if it exists.
My Child Was Bitten by a Dog. Do I Need a Lawyer?
Owners will defend their animal, and proving their responsibility can be complicated under Georgia law. That is why we recommend that anyone who has been attacked by a dog—child or adult—needs the representation of a dog bite attorney.
The injuries received in a vicious dog attack are serious and, in the cases of prolonged attacks, almost always life-threatening. The animal’s instincts lead it to attempt to inflict the most damage possible on its victim. The vicious dog does not have as its goal the simple injury of an individual—the vicious dog intends to kill the victim, and unless someone intervenes, death may occur. Not only do such serious injuries inflict compensable pain and suffering, they incur high medical bills and can prevent you or your child from attending school or work. Holding the owner fully responsible can prevent future attacks, protecting other kids and adults from injuries.
An Atlanta Dog Bite Lawyer Is Here to Listen to You
The terror of being a dog attack victim is only matched by the fear that the negligent behavior of the owner may result in an attack on another individual. In order to prevent this, that owner must be held responsible for any actions on their part which contributed to the likelihood that the animal would attack and cause harm to another individual.
If you have been injured by a dog, whether leashed or not, and you believe that the dog’s owner could have done more to prevent the attack, call Buddoo and Associates, P.C. at (404) 800-3755 immediately to discuss your case with an Atlanta dog bite lawyer. If you prefer to contact us online, you may chat now with a representative or complete our information form for a free initial consultation.
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