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What is the liability for dog bites for dog owners in Arizona?

Today, it is very common for residents in Arizona and other states across the nation to have pets. A dog, a cat or any type of domestic animal can serve as a companion. In fact, nowadays, it is rare to visit a friend or travel on the private property of another without encountering a dog. While dog ownership is high across the country, so are incidents involving dogs. That is true even though many dog owners take precautions to protect his or her canine friend and anyone that might come in contact with the dog. Precautions notwithstanding, dog bites and attack unfortunately occur.

What is the liability for dog bites for dog owners in Arizona? According Arizona Statute section 11-1025, a dog owner is liable for a dog bite when it occurs at a public or private location, which includes the property of the dog owner.

If a dog owner is found liable for a dog bite or attack, he or she is held accountable for any damages, injuries and losses suffered by the bite victim regardless of whether the viciousness of the dog was known by the dog owner or not.

This section, however, does not permit a bite victim to bring a claim for damages following a dog bite if a governmental agency was using the dog in question for military or police work and the bite occurred while the dog was defending itself from harassing or provoking acts. Additionally, an action cannot be brought if the dog was assisting an employee of the agency to apprehend a suspect, investigate a crime, execute a warrant or defend a peace officer or another person.

Understanding the terms and conditions for initiating an action following a dog bite is imperative for dog bite victims. If you believe a negligent dog owner is liable for the injuries you suffered following a dog bite or attack, it might be possible to hold the dog owner accountable through a personal injury claim.

Source: Animallaw.info, "ยง 11-1025. Liability for dog bites," accessed Aug. 28, 2016

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Law Office of Keith A. Hammond, P.C.

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