Personalized Personal Injury Representation in South Florida
Were you bitten by a dog or some other dangerous animal? You may be able to recover damages, even if the owner was not aware of the animal’s aggressiveness.
At Jurney & De La Grana, P.A., each personal injury case receives our undivided attention, and our Miami dog and animal bite lawyers confidently handle these cases. After evaluating what happened, we will help you understand your legal options and answer all of your questions. Our firm routinely works with top experts, specialists, and investigators, and we will use all of our resources when fighting for you. You and your case matter to us, and we will do everything we can to obtain the compensation you deserve.
Say you were walking in a public park, minding your own business. Suddenly, a large, leashed dog jumps at you and sinks its teeth into your wrist, piercing the skin. You go to the hospital to get your wound checked out, and you end up with a costly medical bill. Furthermore, the strain on your wrist keeps you from working for several days.
Under Florida’s dog bite law, the biting dog’s owner in this scenario can be held legally responsible for your medical expenses, missed work, and other damages. It does not matter if the dog had never been aggressive before or if the owner did nothing reckless or negligent. Because the bite occurred on public property, you likely have a claim.
In Florida, you can seek compensation for dog bite-related injuries when:
- You are on public property or have permission to be on private property, and
- A dog bit you (other animal-related injuries are not necessarily covered)
If you were unlawfully present on private property when the dog bite occurs – say you were crossing through someone else’s yard to get to your house – you may still be able to recover compensation. However, you will need to prove the animal owner’s negligence led to the bite. This may be possible if the owner knew their dog had a history of biting others but failed to secure the animal or put up warning signs.
The state of Florida also enforces a “dangerous dog” law. A dog is considered “dangerous” when it attacks, chases, or injures another person without being provoked and/or has killed two or more animals. The owner must register the animal with the local government, secure it on their property (with warning signage), and use a muzzle and leash whenever the dog leaves their property. You may be able to recover compensation through a personal injury claim if a dangerous dog attacks you. Our Miami dog and animal bite attorneys can assess the circumstances of the attack and advise whether you have a case.
Like with most personal injury cases, you will have up to four years from the date of the attack to file a dog bite lawsuit. If an animal bite results in death, you will have up to two years from the date of your loved one’s passing to file a wrongful death claim.
A successful Florida dog bite lawsuit can help you recover compensation for:
- Medical bills
- Missed wages
- Property damage
- Physical and emotional pain and suffering
- Loss of consortium
- Reductions in quality of life
- Punitive damages (in situations where an owner is especially negligent or reckless)
If your claim goes to trial, you should expect the defense to claim you were partly responsible for what happened. They may argue you did not have permission to be on private property or that you did something to provoke the animal. If the court agrees, your total damage award will be reduced by your percentage of “fault.” For example, if you are found to be 20% “at fault” and awarded $10,000 in damages, you would only receive $8,000.
Fortunately, our Miami dog bite and animal attack lawyers know how to anticipate and refute many common defenses. Our team at Jurney & De La Grana, P.A. will work relentlessly to protect your interests and seek the maximum compensation available.
“Professional, attentive and client driven. Fantastic service”- Diana C.