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Liability For Injured Dog

Discussions relating to Personal Injury Law

Liability For Injured Dog

Postby Carlie » Fri Dec 02, 2016 7:20 am

While driving on a residential street in Florida a dog came out of nowhere and I hit it.  I saw it out of the corner of my left eye and hit it almost simultaneously. I immediately stopped. The dog was not on a leash, despite the local leash law.  The dog had two small scraps(no bleeding). In heat of the moment I told the owner of the dog that I was sorry and would pay for the vet bills. I went with the family to the vet.  The vet found that the accident had popped the dog's ACL ligament in its left back leg.  No other problems.  The vet said that the dog was overweight and that the ACL was most likely partially torn before the accident. I split that vet bill with the owner, paying $150.00.  Now the ortho vet specialist says it will cost $2,200 to fix the ACL and the owner wants me to pay half. I told him I was sorry I hit the dog, but they allowed the dog to run free.  I said I believed I had paid my responsibility by splitting the initial vet visit.  The owner's wife says I was speeding(it was a narrow brick road and I do not believe I was going over the speed limit of 25 mph).  At the time of the accident she was hysterical – screaming and crying and wailing.  The owner also denies hearing the vet say that the ACL was likely partially torn before the accident.(Vet not available until tomorrow so I couldn't confirm what he said).  

What is my likely liability under these circumstances?  Should I offer to pay something, and if so, what?
Carlie
 
Posts: 41
Joined: Mon Jan 20, 2014 7:38 pm

Liability For Injured Dog

Postby Cilombo » Sun Dec 04, 2016 8:44 pm

While driving on a residential street in Florida a dog came out of nowhere and I hit it.  I saw it out of the corner of my left eye and hit it almost simultaneously. I immediately stopped. The dog was not on a leash, despite the local leash law.  The dog had two small scraps(no bleeding). In heat of the moment I told the owner of the dog that I was sorry and would pay for the vet bills. I went with the family to the vet.  The vet found that the accident had popped the dog's ACL ligament in its left back leg.  No other problems.  The vet said that the dog was overweight and that the ACL was most likely partially torn before the accident. I split that vet bill with the owner, paying $150.00.  Now the ortho vet specialist says it will cost $2,200 to fix the ACL and the owner wants me to pay half. I told him I was sorry I hit the dog, but they allowed the dog to run free.  I said I believed I had paid my responsibility by splitting the initial vet visit.  The owner's wife says I was speeding(it was a narrow brick road and I do not believe I was going over the speed limit of 25 mph).  At the time of the accident she was hysterical – screaming and crying and wailing.  The owner also denies hearing the vet say that the ACL was likely partially torn before the accident.(Vet not available until tomorrow so I couldn't confirm what he said).  

What is my likely liability under these circumstances?  Should I offer to pay something, and if so, what?
Cilombo
 
Posts: 35
Joined: Sat Feb 01, 2014 12:32 am

Liability For Injured Dog

Postby Kevis » Tue Dec 06, 2016 6:16 am

I am not a Florida attorney, so I cannot comment on Florida law; however, generally, the failure of the owner of the dog to contain the dog in a fence or control it by a leash would be negligence on the part of the owner. That does not relieve the driver from responsibility to drive carefully and within speed limits for the conditions.

I think your offer to pay half of emergency care was generous and appropriate, considering the anguish of the owner.  

If the owner decides to sue you for additional medical bills, your automobile insurance company should protect you by providing you an attorney and paying any damages awarded against you.  To confirm this coverage, you will want to contact your insurance company to report the incident and the possibility that the dog owner may be making a claim against you.

In summary, you need pay nothing more, since your insurance company would pay . . . if the owner makes a claim and wins in court.

Good luck, and thanks for writing,

Albert Hollan

Houston, TX

www.carwrecks.com
Kevis
 
Posts: 44
Joined: Tue Jan 21, 2014 8:11 am


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