If you are injured as a result of an animal attack, you may be able to recover monetary damages from the owner, or from the owner’s insurance company. In Nevada and California, the owner or occupant of a home has an ongoing duty to warn guests, repairmen and others on the premises of any dangerous conditions, including dogs and other animals that could cause injury. In addition, that person also has the responsibility of fixing or repairing any dangerous condition so that the premises are safe. Furthermore, animal owners must prevent situations that may be considered an “attractive nuisance” to persons, such as children who may desire to innocently “pet the nice dog”, from gaining access to areas where the animals are housed on the property.
If the owner or occupant breaches that duty by failing to warn you of a dangerous condition, and you’re injured as a result, then the owner or occupant of the property may be responsible for all of your damages. This would include, without limitation, your medical expenses, loss of wages, pain and suffering and emotional distress.
In order to win your case, however, you must be able to prove (i) that there was a dangerous or defective condition on the premises; (ii) that the owner or occupant knew, or should have known about the condition; (iii) that the owner or occupant had a sufficient opportunity to fix or correct the condition; (iv) that you could not have avoided the accident/attack with the exercise of reasonable diligence; and (v) that the condition caused your injuries. This is defined by statute NV 202.500.
If you or someone you know has been injured in an animal attack in someone’s home, walking, riding a skateboard, bicycle, moped, motorcycle, or any other form of open access transportation on public streets, you may have a claim against the owner of the animal. There are numerous levels that animal owners can be held responsible for the acts of their pets while under their (the owner(s)) control.
In order for you to know your legal rights, you need to contact someone who understands the legal aspects of your situation. However, it is important to remember that until you are properly advised, you should not give a recorded statement to the animal owner’s insurance company without first speaking to an experienced attorney. The insurance company does not represent you and, in the vast majority of cases, only wants to limit the amount of money it may ultimately have to pay.
With over 65 years of combined legal experience, we have the resources, expertise and legal knowledge it takes to protect your legal rights.