Clearwater Dog Bite Attorney

Were you or a loved one attacked by a dog?

There are thousands of dog owners in Florida. Not every dog is dangerous, but some dogs have a greater proclivity to get aggressive and attack than others. If you or someone you love was bitten or attacked by a dog, you may be able to bring a lawsuit against the dog's owner for the damages their dog caused. Our Clearwater personal injury attorneys are familiar with Florida's dog bite statute and how to build a case around dog owner liability in these types of cases.

§ 757.04 of the Florida Statutes – Dog Owner's Liability

Dog and Owner

There are many facets to Florida's dog bite law. We hope in this section we can break it down so that it's easy to understand.

  1. First of all, a dog owner can be held liable when their dog bites another person if:
  2. The attack happened in a public place, OR
  3. The attack happened in a private place, but the victim was lawfully present
  4. A dog owner can be held liable regardless:
  5. Of the dog's former viciousness, OR
  6. The owner's knowledge of the dog's former viciousness
  7. A dog attack victim can be held liable or partially liable if:
  8. Their actions contributed to the attack, OR
  9. They intentionally provoked the dog

Regardless of Former Viciousness

In some states, dog owners can use the defense that they were unaware their dog was vicious by showing that the dog had no history of violence or aggression. In Florida, that is not the case. Former viciousness has no bearing on determining liability in dog bite cases.

The court will look exclusively at the attack, rather than the dog's history, when determining fault and appropriate damages.

Warning Sign on the Premises

Under Florida statute, if a dog owner posts a sign either on their dog or on the property where the dog is contained, and that sign effectively warns visitors to the premises that the dog is potentially dangerous, then an attack victim may not be able to sue the dog's owner for any attack and ensuing injuries that take place. The premises owner must warn potential visitors to the property "in a prominent place" that their dog could attack and cause injury.

Most Dangerous Dog Breeds

While all dogs possess unique personalities, there are some breeds that have been recognized to be more aggressive and which pose a greater threat to the safety of humans. The most dangerous dog breeds in the United States are:

  • Boxer
  • Chow Chow
  • Doberman Pinscher
  • Huskies / Malamute
  • Rottweiler
  • German Shepherd
  • Pit bull

Due to the fact that these breeds pose an increased risk of attacking, many communities, apartment complexes and other private locations do not allow tenants to keep these dogs on the premises.

Contact Roman & Gaynor to Discuss Your Dog Bite Case

If you or someone you care about was bitten or attacked by a dog, and this occurred less than two years ago, you may be able to file a claim against the dog's owner to recover financial damages. Contact a Clearwater dog bite lawyer at our firm today and we will provide you with a free and confidential case evaluation. Roman & Gaynor passionately pursues justice for victims of negligence. Call today!