Delaware Dog And Animal Bite Lawyer

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Every year in the United States, over four million people experience a dog bite. More than 300,000 of those are bitten seriously enough to require treatment in a hospital setting. Dog bites can not only be traumatic and physically painful, but they can also lead to a serious bacterial infection, whether staph, MRSA or another type of infection which may require a hospital stay. Even if a dog bite does not initially appear very serious, bacteria can linger in the joints and tissues, and cause problems down the road. Some dog bites can even be fatal.

Fortunately for those who are affected by a dog bite incident, there are laws that can help them recoup damages for pain and suffering.

Delaware dog bite laws are slightly unusual in comparison to laws concerning dog bites in other states. The Delaware dog bite law covers all injuries, not just bites, and all victims, not just human beings. The statute reads:
The owner of a dog is liable in damages for any injury, death or loss to person or property that is caused by such dog, unless the injury, death or loss was caused to the body or property of a person who, at the time, was committing or attempting to commit a trespass or other criminal offense on the property of the owner, or was committing or attempting to commit a criminal offense against any person, or was teasing, tormenting or abusing the dog.

Although Delaware does not have a Dangerous Dog Statute that addresses an owner's liability for injuries a dog may inflict on a person, Delaware does, however, have a statute that sets forth certain legal duties of dangerous dog owners. Under this statute, after Delaware officials declare a dog to be dangerous, the owner must:

* maintain liability insurance totaling at least $100,000 to cover damage or injury caused by the dog;
* confine the dog when it is on the owner's property;
* properly muzzle and restrain the dog when it is off the owner's property
* display a sign warning, which must be visible and legible from the roadway or 100 feet, whichever is less, that a dangerous dog is on the premises.
* Spay or neuter the dog
* immediately notify the local animal control agency when the dog is loose or unconfined, when it attacks a person or another domestic animal, when the owner moves, and/or when the dog dies.

Violations of this statute carry penalties ranging from $50 to $2,000.

Though it hasn't happened in Delaware yet, dogs in other states have been shot and killed by police officers following the chain of command.

If you have been bitten or otherwise harmed by a dog, or if you are the owner of a domestic animal that has been attacked by a dog in the state of Delaware, you may have legal rights. The first step is to contact a qualified Delaware personal injury attorney, particularly one who specializes in dog bite and animal attack law. They can help you determine whether or not you may have a valid claim, and can walk you through the process of bringing that claim to court if so.


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