Who Pays for My Injuries in a Dog Bite Case?
If you’ve been injured in a dog bite attack, you are most likely entitled to recover compensation for your damages. Colorado dog bite laws establish strict liability in these cases. This means that the dog’s owner is responsible for your damages, regardless of whether they acted negligently. In addition, the dog doesn’t need to have a history of violence for you to recover compensation.
Despite the law clearly holding dog owners accountable for injuries inflicted by their pets, many dog bite victims are hesitant to file a lawsuit against the dog’s owner. One of the most common reasons for this hesitation is due to a concern that the dog’s owner will incur significant financial hardships if they have to provide compensation for injuries sustained. This feeling is especially common when the dog’s owner is a family member or close friend.
However, it’s important to understand that in most instances, the dog’s owner won’t pay for your damages. Instead, compensation for your injuries will typically be paid by the dog owner’s insurance company.
Dog Bite Cases and Homeowner’s Insurance
Most homeowner’s insurance policies will cover expenses associated for injuries caused by the policyholder’s animal, up to the coverage limits established by the policy. The average amount of liability coverage in a typical homeowner’s insurance policy ranges from $100,000 to $300,000, and this is often adequate to fully compensate a dog bite victim for their damages.
Keep in mind that there are certain limitations associated with insurance coverage for dog bite attacks that may impact who will be responsible for paying for your damages:
- Some insurance companies will only cover the first time a dog injures someone in an attack
- Some insurance companies may refuse to cover injuries caused by specific breeds of dogs that are typically considered to be dangerous
- Some homeowner’s insurance policies may reduce the level of coverage for dog bite attacks occurring outside of the home
In situations where insurance limits the amount of money they’ll pay out on your claim, you may need to seek the remainder of your compensation directly from the dog’s owner.
Dog Bite Cases and Renter’s Insurance
Most renter’s insurance policies will cover the compensation for injuries associated with a dog bite attack occurring on the rented property. These policies function similarly to a homeowner’s insurance policy, and the insurance company will pay for all expenses associated with medical bills, property damage and lost wages up to the coverage limits of the policy.
As with homeowner’s insurance policies, many renter’s insurance policies contain limitations associated with they will pay on a dog bite attack. These may include:
- Reduced coverage or no coverage for dog bite attacks occurring off the rental property
- Exclusions for coverage of dog bite injuries caused by certain breeds of dogs considered to be dangerous
In these situations, you may need to seek compensation directly from the dog’s owner.
Who Pays for My Injuries if There Is No Insurance Coverage?
If the dog’s owner doesn’t have insurance, you can still file a lawsuit against the dog’s owner to recover compensation for your damages. Due to Colorado’s strict liability laws for dog bite cases, the dog’s owner will generally be financially responsible for your damages even if they didn’t act negligently.
Pushchak Law Can Help
If you’ve been injured in a dog bite attack, Pushchak Law can help you recover compensation for your damages. Brian Pushchak has made dog bite cases a primary focus of his practice. He understands the complex laws and issues associated with these claims, and he can help you demonstrate the total extent of your damages. This specialized experience will give you the edge you need when seeking to maximize the value of your compensation.
Mr. Pushchak’s unique Informed Decisions™ Approach is focused on ensuring you receive the best possible outcome to your case. As part of this approach, you’ll remain in control of the entire process every step of the way. Mr. Pushchak will discuss your goals with you in detail to ensure you’re both aligned on your desired outcome. He’ll answer any questions you may have and recommend the ideal strategy to achieve your goals. While he will make strategic recommendations about your case, you will have the ultimate say on the approach used.
Contact us today to schedule your free consultation. Pushchak Law serves clients in Denver and throughout the surrounding areas of Colorado.
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