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Dog bite lawsuit

Discussion in 'Dog Training and Behaviour' started by Lolly154, Apr 18, 2019.


  1. Lolly154

    Lolly154 PetForums Newbie

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    I was wondering if I could get advice. Not sure if this is the right forum.

    My friend’s dog has bitten a delivery driver and she’s getting sued in a personal injury claim. She has no pet or home insurance.

    Solicitors want to take thousands just to defend the case. She’s admitting full liability. The payout she’ll need to pay will run into thousands. The company representing the claimant is assuming she has insurance. She hasn’t responded to them yet.

    My question is: is it wise to represent herself in this situation to avoid high solicitor costs. She’s prepared to pay a sum in compensation. Should she just contact the company direct and admit liability and negotiate a sum herself? Or does she need solicitors? It’s a pretty clear cut case that she isn’t disputing. She just wants to get it sorted.
     
  2. Cleo38

    Cleo38 PetForums VIP

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    I would advise her to not respond as yet but speak to someone at Dog Law UK asap. They are experts in this field & will give her the best advice https://www.doglaw.co.uk/
     
    O2.0, kimthecat, Calvine and 2 others like this.
  3. JoanneF

    JoanneF PetForums VIP

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    And - in case anyone reads in future, this won't help your friend but third party liability insurance for dogs is really not expensive.
     
  4. Lurcherlad

    Lurcherlad PetForums VIP

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    If you join Dogs Trust your dogs get Liability cover.
     
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  5. Burrowzig

    Burrowzig PetForums VIP

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    Assuming the incident took place in the UK.
     
  6. Lolly154

    Lolly154 PetForums Newbie

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    It did. She’s had advice from a dog law solicitor who wants about £2000 to represent. Just wondered if she could avoid those costs as it’s a straightforward case.
     
  7. Calvine

    Calvine PetForums VIP

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    She should take the advice of @Cleo38.
     
  8. Blitz

    Blitz PetForums VIP

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    How very unfortunate. I assume she should not admit liability and she should tell the company she does not have insurance. What was the damage to the delivery driver. It could be they are claiming far too much as they think she is insured. Personally I would try and deal with it myself or read up on dog law - but basically if the dog bit or frightened the delivery driver she is liable for prosecution - but compensation would be a civil matter I would have thought. If the dog bit him badly enough to warrant a big compensation I trust the dog has been destroyed. If it was just a nip then why on earth are they due any compensation.
     
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  9. Cleo38

    Cleo38 PetForums VIP

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    Unfortunately the law isn't always straightforward tho. If she hasn't already then I really do advise contacting Trevor Copper at the link I provided, he is one of the most experienced solicitors regarding dog law so can give advice over the phone regarding how she should proceed.
     
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  10. Linda Weasel

    Linda Weasel PetForums VIP

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    A couple of things spring to mind here.

    Has she had photographic evidence of the man’s injury?

    Would it be worth contacting the company/person in question ( depending on who is instigating this), confirming that there is no third party insurance in place and offering whatever is an affordable sum as an apology, and also saying that this is the dog’s first offence and she will now be sure to keep him under control?
    I would guess this wouldn’t make the situation any worse as she’s already admitted liability.

    This is just my thoughts on the situation and I’m certainly no a legal eagle. Professional help would be the best way to go if the funds can be found.
     
    kimthecat likes this.
  11. Lolly154

    Lolly154 PetForums Newbie

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    He was off work for a few months. I was thinking a direct offer would be worth it too. They’re assuming there’s insurance. She has no assets. She will be paying off whatever is agreed for a long time to come. Solicitor costs would only make it worse.

    I’ll suggest the dog law firm suggested above too.
     
  12. Linda Weasel

    Linda Weasel PetForums VIP

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    Off work for a few months?
    From a dog bite?

    I would definitely ask for photos and doctor certificates. They might not be willing due to data protection, but unless this was a serious savaging it does sound as if he’s milking it a bit.
     
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  13. kimthecat

    kimthecat PetForums VIP

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    Im sorry to hear this. She really needs to make it clear that she is not insured and has no assets.
    She needs to ask for photographs of the wound , a statement from the person who was bitten, hospital and doctor records.
    Were the police called?
     
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  14. Blitz

    Blitz PetForums VIP

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    If he was genuinely off work for a few months it must have been a really bad attack. I do hope the dog is no longer around if it can inflict that much damage. She presumably would know as it would have involved police and an ambulance. Our postman was very badly bitten with a huge hole in his arm and his leg was badly bitten too and he needed hospital treatment. He was only off work for a couple of days.
     
  15. Calvine

    Calvine PetForums VIP

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    Goodness; even after major surgery most people manage to stagger back to work after a couple of months (that's if they want to, of course). You would need to be really seriously savaged surely to be off work for several months? The guy is likely trying it on, but as the dog actually did bite him, he probably has a case and has found an ''ambulance chaser'' to speak for him.
    I do recall one occasion when walking my dog, and a jogger came up behind us; the dog was on a lead, I was aware that this guy was approaching from behind and shortened Gulliver's lead (not because I thought the dog would kill him, but simply so that he would not have to go into the road if we were taking up too much space for his liking). This idiot jogged safely past, but as soon as he got in front, he turned and ran deliberately into the dog who stood on his back legs with his front paws on the guy's shoulders (I had loosened the lead after he passed us as the dog had shown no interest in him). Gulliver was a Bloodhound whose previous owner had taken him to scent trials and the way a Bloodhound identifies a possible ''find'' is to stand on his back legs, with a front leg on each of the ''found'' person's shoulder at which point they are praised and handsomely rewarded. The guy immediately clutched his genital area (yes, yikes, I know, nasty!) and shrieked, ''It bit me, it bit me'', at which point my elderly neighbour (90+) offered to take him indoors and tend to the damaged genital area. He declined the offer. Another long-standing neighbour was also there and said it was obvious the guy had decided he wanted to get some compo by whatever means possible. But as Gulliver had not touched his ''thingy'' and there would be nothing worth photographing, the guy sloped off and the dog's reputation was unblemished!!
     
  16. lullabydream

    lullabydream PetForums VIP

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    I know it's not funny for you...but the photos in court would have been amusing! As surely without them it wouldn't count...as you usually have photos as well as doctor's report.

    If hypothetically he had taken you to court you could have asked for a magnifying glass to see his thingy, just to be an ass. I mean the bloke was asking for it!
     
    Calvine likes this.
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