Kentucky's high dog population is a known fact. As loyal and friendly dogs can be, they can also bite a person, causing minor or major injuries in the process. Therefore, the dog bite laws in Kentucky states that dog owners are strictly liable for any injuries their dog caused by biting a person.
If the court declares a dog dangerous, it requires the pet owner to keep their dog in secure location away from others. If the dog owner fails to comply with the court's order, they will be fined, jailed or both.
If you have been bitten by a dog, you should hire a personal injury attorney in Kentucky to counter the defenses prepared by the dog owner's defense attorney.
What is an Affirmative Defense?
To win the dog bite injury lawsuit, the dog owner's defense attorney prepares an affirmative defense. The defense attorney will persuade the judge or jury that the injured party was unable to prove all the elements of their claim. Your personal injury attorney will need to prove the dog owner's liability in the dog bite injury lawsuit to help you receive fair compensation.
The defense attorney will need to persuade the judge or jury that the evidence your personal injury attorney presented is too weak to hold in court. If they can prove that they were not liable for the injury you suffered, their chances of winning the case increases.
An example of an affirmative defense is proving that a key witness in the dog bite injury lawsuit does not remember much about the dog bite incident. For this reason, you require the services of a seasoned and qualified personal injury attorney to counter the affirmative defense. This will help you prove that the dog owner was liable for the dog bite injury you suffered.
Disproving the Injured Party's Claim in a Dog Bite Injury Lawsuit
States that do not follow a strict dog bite statute, but follow traditional negligence laws may work in the dog owner's favor, as it can help them discredit your dog bite injury claim. However, this does not apply to the state of Kentucky, as it has a strict dog bite statute in place.
Even then, their defense attorney can disprove your dog bite injury claim. The pet owner can deny ownership of the dog and state that they were not in control of it. If you have hired a personal injury attorney and gone to trial, the decision on whether the dog owner was responsible or not for the dog bite incident falls upon the judge or jury.
Another defense their attorney can present in court is that they did not and could not have known that their dog could bite another person. Moreover, if their dog had not shown any previous signs of behaving violently and this is the first time they have bitten a person, the judge or jury may not hold them responsible for the dog bite incident This is why you need to rely on the expertise of a personal injury attorney to help sway the decision in your favor.
Another argument the dog owner's defense attorney can make is that you, in some manner, provoked the dog which led it to bite you. Unfortunately for dog owners living in Kentucky, the state has a strict dog bite statute, which means that disproving your dog bite injury claim is much more difficult than in states without this statute.
Even then, it is important for you to engage the services of a qualified and knowledgeable personal injury attorney with experience in representing victims in dog bite injury lawsuits.
Additional Possible Affirmative Defenses
Their defense attorney can also prove that you had trespassed on their property, which resulted in the dog biting them. They can also argue that you assumed the risk of a dog bite.
Again, in states with a strict dog bite statute, proving that the dog owner was not at fault for the dog bite incident is much more difficult and these affirmative defenses may not work. However, this does not mean their defense attorney will not try to come with affirmative defenses to prove their client was not responsible for your dog bite injury. Therefore, you still need to obtain a qualified personal injury attorney in Kentucky to represent you in court, as they will have the expertise to help steer the court's decision in your favor.
Quick Overview of Defenses in a Dog Bite Injury Lawsuit
Their defense attorney can make the following defenses in a dog bite injury lawsuit:
· Provoked the dog
· Trespassed or broke the law at the time of the dog bite injury
· Voluntarily risked getting bit by the dog
· Contributed to the dog bite injury by displaying careless behavior
Since the nature and circumstances surrounding a dog bite injury lawsuit are different from each other, both the defense attorney and personal injury attorney will work to develop a solid argument to put the blame on each other's client.Your personal injury attorney can also emphasize that the dog owner knew their dog is from a breed known for its aggressive behavior.
Dog Breeds with an Aggressive Trait
Some of the breeds that have an aggressive trait are chows, German Shephard, Doberman Pinchers, Pit Bulls, Terriers, and Rottweilers. If you know a dog possesses an aggressive trait, you need to ensure you do not go near it, unless the owner is present. Even if you know the dog owner and know that their dog has never acted out, you still need to keep a distance, as they might display aggressive behavior towards you.
If the dog has come from the vet, it may feel flustered, agitated, and irritated. You should stay away from dogs you feel can attack. If the dog still ends up biting you even after maintaining a distance and acting cautiously around, you can hire a personal injury attorney to file a lawsuit against the dog owner.
If you require the services of a seasoned and qualified personal injury attorney in Kentucky, get in touch with Christopher Jackson Law by calling us at 859-261-1111 to schedule a free consultation.