If you or your child has been bitten by a dog, the first priority should be to seek medical attention. Left untreated, dog bites can cause infection or even death.
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Colorado Dog Bite Law – Strict Liability
In Colorado, the owner of the dog is strictly liable for serious bodily injury. This means that as a victim you do not have to prove that the owner knew of the dog’s vicious tendencies. However, the strict liability statute only applies to dog owners, not dog walkers or others who may be keeping the dog. And the statute only applies to serious bodily injury – injury that involves a substantial risk of:
- Serious and permanent disfigurement
- Protracted loss or impairment of the function of any body part or organ
- Bone fractures
- Second or third degree burns
Recovery under the strict liability statute is limited to economic damages. These are actual damages you sustained because of the injury, such as medical expenses. Other damages are only available through common law negligence actions.
Colorado Dog Bite Law – Negligence
In a common law action, the dog owner is likely liable for your injuries when the animal bites you. The dog owner can be liable if they had reason to believe the dog was dangerous and failed to take steps to protect and warn others, such as:
- Fencing the dog in to keep it away from others
- Letting the dog run freely, off-leash
Landlords may also be liable under certain circumstances because of premises liability statutes.
The best way to understand your legal options is to consult with an experienced dog bite attorney in Colorado.
Did you or your child get severely injured by a dog bite? Get the legal help you need.
Call the experienced dog bite lawyers at Shafner Law today at (303) 796-0555. We welcome clients throughout Denver and the entire state of Colorado.