Although dogs can be loyal companions, they still have animal instincts that can be harmful or even deadly. In fact, each year in the United States, approximately 4.7 million people suffer from dog bites; a fifth of that statistic requires medical attention.
According to the CDC, children are normally bitten more than adults, particularly children between 8 and 9 years old. The majority of these dog bites are not from stray dogs, they are mostly a neighbor or family member’s dog. When ranking the states who see the most dog bites per year, New Jersey ranks within the top ten.
Dog bites in South Jersey are more common than one might realize. Recently, 12 victims were bitten and terrorized for months by three aggressive dogs in a Little Egg Harbor Township neighborhood. If you are a victim of a dog bite, what should you know about laws regarding dog bites in New Jersey?
Statute of Limitations and Strict Liability
The statute of limitations and strict liability are significant if you have been bitten by a dog in New Jersey. Like with any personal injury case, a dog bite lawsuit must be filed within two years of the incident; if it is filed after two years, the chances of success are extremely slim.
Strict liability statute dictates that the dog’s owner will be held liable for a dog bite if the victim was injured by an actual bite, not a push from the dog or if the person was accidentally injured while a dog chased them. The owner can also be held accountable if the bitten person was injured on public or private property in a lawful manner, such as a mailman delivering mail to your house.
The owner is held liable regardless of the dog’s history. This includes whether the dog had previously shown aggression.
If a person is not bitten by the dog, but was injured in another way, as previously mentioned, the injured party can still file a claim based on negligence. For instance, a person getting knocked down by a dog and hitting their head.
If someone claims to have been bitten by a dog, they will most likely face a variety of defenses. It is important to keep in mind that hiring legal guidance is necessary to see the outcome in your favor, whether you have been bitten or if it was your dog injuring someone.
Trespassing is a major concern. If the injured party is seen as an intruder on private property, the court may dictate that the injured party and the dog’s owner will share accountability. If the injured person is found to be at least 50 percent responsible, then they will not receive any compensation due to New Jersey’s comparative negligence law.
No matter how your dog bite occurred, it is important to contact a lawyer that will review the details of your case to determine if you are eligible for compensation.
Egg Harbor Township Dog Bite Injury Lawyers at the D’Amato Law Firm Defend Those Injured by Negligent Dog Owners
If you have suffered a dog bite or have been injured by a dog, you will need our experienced Egg Harbor Township dog bite injury lawyers at the D’Amato Law Firm to protect your rights. Our knowledgeable lawyers will make sure you receive maximum compensation. Call us at 609-926-3300 or complete our online form for a free consultation. Located in Egg Harbor Township, New Jersey, we proudly serve communities throughout South Jersey, including Atlantic City, Linwood, Galloway Township, Cape May, Vineland, Millville, Bridgeton, Ocean City, and Woodbury.