Getting attacked by a dog can be a scary experience that may lead to serious physical or psychological damage. Dog bites or attacks can be particularly serious when young children are involved.
If a dog attacks or bites another person or animal, the owner can be prosecuted for an offense and fined. The kind of claim owed to the victim depends on the breed of dog and the circumstances leading to the attack.
When Is the Dog Owner Liable?
The owner of an attacking dog can face varying penalties depending on the circumstances and aftermath of the attack. These penalties range from fines to prison sentences of up to 10 years if the attack results in the death of a person and involved a breed of dog that was restricted or previously declared dangerous.
The dog owner is not always liable for a bite or attack. For example, it is less likely that the owner will be liable to pay if:
- The dog was being abused, assaulted or teased
- A person known to the dog is being attacked in front of it, or
- The victim was trespassing on the property where the dog is kept
If the dog was with someone other than the owner during the attack, both that person and the owner can be held liable for the attack. If the dog chases or rushes at someone aggressively without attacking, it can still result in criminal proceedings.
Making a Claim
Following an attack, the court may order the dog owner to pay an attacked person. The court or local council may also order the dog to be put down or declared dangerous (which involves legal requirements on how the dog is managed).
If you are injured by a dog and the owner is not prosecuted, you can still make a claim against the owner of the dog for damages resulting from their negligence in failing to properly control their dog. To successfully do this, you must provide evidence that the owner was aware of the potential risk that their dog would attack.
Get in Touch
If you’ve been attacked by another person’s dog and would like advice on making a claim, speak to a lawyer. At Brisbane Lawyers, we believe every person has the right to have legal representation, which is why we charge no fees until the successful conclusion of your claim. We pay all the outlay costs, including medical and investigation reports until your claim is over. No Win, No Fee – that’s our promise.
Speak to one of our experienced compensation lawyers on 07 3188 5800 or contact us today.