Dogs are generally friendly pets. However, if these fluffy canines feel threatened, they might become aggressive and fight back. And if this happens, the resulting injuries can be devastating.
If you are attacked and hurt by someone’s dog, you may pursue the animal’s owner or handler for financial restitution through a premises liability lawsuit. Unfortunately, not all premises liability claims end in compensation. If your dog attack claim is denied, you might want to know what went wrong so you can decide whether you should appeal the denial or not.
Here are two common reasons why your dog attack claim may be denied:
If you provoked the dog
Any action that elicits a radical change in the dog’s natural behavior amounts to provocation. This principle is used to determine who is at fault following the dog attack.
If it is established that you provoked the dog (hit the dog, stepped on or pulled its tail or tried to take away its food), then Colorado contributory negligence laws might find you responsible for the attack. If your contribution to the attack was 50 percent or more, then your claim will likely be denied.
If you fail to file your claim
Most personal injury claims are settled out of court. However, if you and the dog owner cannot reach a settlement, then you may need to file a personal injury claim.
However, you do not have all the time in the world to file your claim. Under Colorado law, you have two years from the date of the dog attack to file your premises liability claim. Do not let this statute of limitations period run out.
Knowing your legal options and obligations can help you pursue damages following a preventable dog attack.