In Virginia, pet owners are required to maintain full control over their dogs. A failure to maintain control could lead to an attack with serious injuries. These liabilities often lead to lawsuits based on this failure. The following is a review of dog attack proceedings with a Virginia Personal Injury Lawyer.
Did the Victim Break the Law?
The first factor to consider is whether or not the victim broke the law. Any criminal infraction that led to the animal attack forfeits the victim’s rights to seek compensation. Among the most common criminal acts associated with a dog attack include trespassing, animal cruelty or abuse, and home invasions. Additionally, if the victim provoked the animal deliberately, they cannot seek compensation.
Was There a History of Previous Attacks?
The attorney must determine if there was a history of previous attacks. In these cases, any previous attacks introduce a strict liability. This ruling indicates that the pet owner was aware of these risks and failed to follow additional measures. If a strict liability is used, the pet owner must pay all medical costs associated with the dog attack as well as tort-based awards.
How Animal Control Officers Manage Attacks?
The animal control officer sends a notice to the pet owner about the attack. This notice identifies quarantine requirements for the dog. Typically, the quarantine lasts for up to twelve days. This gives a licensed vet enough to time to determine if the dog has contracted the rabies virus. They must also assess the dog’s temperament to determine if the dog is a threat to the public.
The animal control officer reviews the vet’s report to make a decision about the dog. If it is determined that the dog is a risk to the public, the animal control officer will recommend euthanization. However, in some cases, the dog is relocated.
In Virginia, dog owners must follow leash laws and prevent circumstances that lead to a dog attack. The owner must mitigate common risks that lead to serious injuries or fatalities. They are held at a strict liability if their dog was involved in previous attacks. Victims of dog attacks contact an attorney to start a personal injury claim now.