New Jersey State Bar Association
Bergen County Bar Association

Fatal Dog Bites

Bergen County Lawyer Representing Parties Who Lost Loved Ones in Fatal Dog Attacks

Fatal Dog BitesMany people in New Jersey own dogs and often consider them indispensable members of their families. Although a pet may be beloved, however, it is still an animal, and even treasured pets can unexpectedly bite people, causing serious wounds. Tragically, some people cannot recover from the harm caused by a dog attack and ultimately succumb to their injuries. While money alone cannot compensate people for the loss of a loved one, in many instances, dog owners can be held liable for fatal dog bites. If you lost a loved one due to a dog bite, Bergen County dog bite attorney Howard Leopold of Leopold Law, L.L.C. can advise you of your options for seeking damages and assist you in striving to hold the dog’s owner responsible for the loss of your loved one. Mr. Leopold represents parties in dog bite cases in Bergen County and other cities throughout New Jersey and New York.

Strict Liability for Dog Attacks

New Jersey law imposes liability on dog owners for harm caused by dog attacks. Specifically, the New Jersey dog bite law, as it is commonly referred to, states that if a dog causes any bodily harm to a person, the owner of the dog bears responsibility for the damages suffered by the person bitten, as long as the attack happened in a public place, or lawfully in a private place. The dog bite statute is a strict liability law, which means that the party pursuing the claim does not need to show that the dog owner negligently allowed the attack to occur or knew that the dog had violent tendencies. Instead, the party seeking to impose liability must only show that the dog bit an individual and that the bite caused losses. Notably, however, a dog owner will not be held strictly liable for harm caused by the dog if the victim was trespassing.

In addition to pursuing a strict liability claim, a person who lost a loved one due to fatal dog bites may be able to seek compensation via a negligence claim as well. In New Jersey, to prove negligence led to a victim’s harm, the victim must show that the defendant owed the victim a duty, but the defendant acted in a manner that breached the duty and that the breach caused the victim’s harm.

Damages Awarded for Fatal Dog Bites

The dog bite law provides that a dog owner is liable for the damages caused by their pets. In lawsuits arising out of fatal dog bites, these damages might include compensation for the physical and mental suffering and pain the victim endured from the time of the bite up until their death. It may also include any medical expenses for care the victim received after the bite. The victim’s survivors may be owed damages for the income the victim would have earned throughout their life, expenses related to the funeral and burial of the victim, and compensation for the loss of the victim’s services. If the evidence demonstrates the dog owner’s actions were especially egregious, the victim’s survivors might also be able to recover punitive damages.

Speak with a Diligent New Jersey Personal Injury Attorney

People who lose loved ones due to fatal dog attacks typically suffer not only severe emotional and psychological trauma but often incur substantial financial losses as well. If your loved one passed away due to fatal dog bites, it is wise to speak with an attorney to discuss your rights. Attorney Howard Leopold of Leopold Law, L.L.C. is a diligent Bergen County personal injury lawyer who possesses the skills and resources required to gather the evidence needed to provide you with a strong chance of a favorable result, and if you engage his services, he will advocate assertively on your behalf. Mr. Leopold has offices in Hackensack and New York City, and he frequently represents parties in wrongful death and dog bite cases in Bergen County and cities throughout Hudson, Passaic, and Essex Counties in New Jersey, and Bronx, Richmond, Kings, New York, Queens, and Rockland Counties in New York. You can contact him through the form online or at his New Jersey office at (201) 345-5907 or his New York office at (646) 650-2106 to set up a confidential and free meeting.

Client Reviews
"I had a legal issue with a contract and Mr. Leopold was nothing but truthful, just and honest about how I should proceed with my case. The guidance I received was nothing short of exceptional. I would have no issue whatsoever with recommending him to anyone who needs legal advice or services. He is your man if you need a keen legal eye watching out for you." Iam E.
"Howard gave me the courage to stand up for myself. He showed me the person I could be and encouraged me to make decisions with a healthy future in mind. " Chloe
"Howard went above and beyond for me. He responded to emails, texts, and calls day and night and was aggressive in Court. I am grateful for all his efforts." Pia