A dog bite can be a severe injury that causes infection, scarring, as well as physical and psychological impairment. The financial costs of a dog bite injury could be devastating to a family. The party responsible could be held liable for damages in court.
If you or a loved one were injured due to a dangerous pet, a George County dog bite lawyer could help your case. An experienced personal injury attorney may be able to examine your situation, determine your legal rights, and represent you in your case against the dog’s owner.
For most personal injury cases, the injured party must file their claim within the statute of limitations. Under Mississippi Annotated Code §15-1-49, an injured claimant must file a lawsuit within three years of the incident. If a claim is brought after this three-year statutory period expires, a complaint may be dismissed by the court.
The sooner an injured claimant consults with a skilled George County dog bite attorney, the more likely they will be able to build a case and avoid statutory deadlines.
There are no statutes governing dog bites in Mississippi. However, the ordinances regarding dogs have developed from the state’s case law. For example, in Poy v. Grayson, 273 So.2d 491, 494 (Miss. 1973), the Mississippi Supreme Court ruled that for an injured person to be compensated for a dog bite, an attorney must prove:
This law is known as the one-bite rule. If the owner did not know that the dog was dangerous, they may not be held liable for this first bite. Each county in the State of Mississippi has rules that govern dogs and may affect each individual case, so it is best to seek help from an experienced attorney in George County.
The primary defense an owner will make is that they did not know their dog was dangerous or likely to attack. Due to the one-bite rule, this defense can make it difficult to hold the owner liable if the plaintiff cannot prove that the owner in-fact knew the dog was dangerous.
Mississippi follows a pure comparative negligence rule under Miss. Code Ann. §11-7-5. The defendant may argue that the plaintiff contributed to the accident, and they are only partially liable for damages. This is a strategy that the defendant can employ to try and reduce their percentage of liability.
If you have been injured due to a dangerous dog, you may have physical and psychological damage that can result in significant medical bills, lost wages, and loss of enjoyment of life. A George County dog bite lawyer could help by holding the dog’s owner responsible for your injuries. Call today to discuss your legal rights and what may be possible in your case.