Dogs are funny, friendly creatures that provide us with unconditional love. However, even the most well-mannered pooch could feel threatened and lash out. Dog bite injuries can cause infection and disfigurement, causing the bite victim to incur significant medical bills not just for the physical injuries but also for the emotional trauma suffered. The following is an overview of North Carolina’s dog bite laws.
Some states have a “one bite” rule, meaning that a dog owner is only responsible if their pet bites if they knew that the dog has attacked in the past. North Carolina is not one of these states. North Carolina follows the laws of strict liability when it comes to dog bites. Therefore, plaintiffs do not need to prove the dog owner was negligent as long as the plaintiff suffered a “severe injury” due to the dog bite. To prove strict liability the dog must be considered dangerous per state law and the dog must have injured the plaintiff.
When is a dog “dangerous”?
A dog is considered dangerous if it bit a person so severely that it broke bones or that it caused disfiguring lacerations necessitating an operation or a stay in the hospital. A dog is also considered dangerous if it approached the dog bite victim on another’s property in a “vicious or terrorizing manner.”
Do not wait to file your dog bite claim
It is important to note that if you were attacked by a dog, causing significant damages you only have three years to file a legal claim against the dog owner. Dog bites can cause serious injuries, so it is important that you take the steps necessary to protect your rights and pursue the compensation you deserve.