Search Site
Menu

How Do I Get Compensation For an Injury Caused By a Dog?

Recovery for an injury from a dog depends upon the existence of homeowners insurance coverage on the owner or keeper of the dog. Any injury that occurs as a result of a dog is compensable. The injury need not be an actual bite but could occur as a result of a bump, a trip, or even if a dog causes you to fall from a bicycle. The law in Massachusetts is M.G.L. c. 140, s. 155, “Liability For Damage Caused By Dog.”

The most notable feature of this statute is that the damage need only to have occurred. In comparison, almost all personal injury law requires a showing of negligence. As I emphatically state in the video blog, that is not the case in the dog statute. There is a finding based on what we call “strict liability.” As a result, a dog’s dangerous propensities are not relevant. Leash laws are likewise not relevant. The statute does include the fact that there will not be recovery if the damage “shall have been occasioned to the body or property of a person, who at the time such damage was sustained, was committing a trespass or other tort, or was teasing, tormenting or abusing such dog.” I haven’t had a client sue who was found to have been teasing, tormenting or abusing the dog who caused the damage.

Homeowners insurance will cover the owner or keeper. There are some dogs who are excluded from an insurance policy. They are blacklisted from coverage. If that is the case, hopefully the homeowner did indeed find an insurance company offering coverage.

It seems that most of the dog attack cases that I have encountered are bites. Not only that, they involve facial scarring. To proceed with those cases involves the usual work in a personal injury case. At least that work does not include any concern over whether I can establish liability because the statute speaks very clearly in the plaintiff’s (the person suing) favor. If the dog isn’t man’s best friend, the statute is.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Feinberg & Alban, P.C. fervently protects your rights
  • The Boston firm of Feinberg & Alban, P.C. specializes its practice in the area of personal injury.

    The attorneys serve the entire state of Massachusetts in addition to affiliating with lawyers in other states to handle cases outside of Massachusetts.

  • $7.7 Million Award for Feinberg & Alban Client in Personal Injury Trial

    Boston Attorneys Win Highest Injury Verdict in Massachusetts in 2011 & 2012.

Client Reviews
  • google
    5.0/5.0

    It was a pleasure working with attorney Alexis Cahill. She helped me understand everything and gave me more than I ever thought. She is so nice and an excellent lawyer. I'm glad I went to this co-op.” thank again you for taking care of everyth...

    Read more

    rita botelho

  • google
    5.0/5.0

    Colleen Santora and her partners at Feinberg & Alban went above and beyond in providing efficient and professional representation throughout my recovery process. Colleen is a great attorney that is very knowledgeable and empathetic. She was a pleasur...

    Read more

    ELI-RAN YOUSHAEI

  • google
    5.0/5.0

    Working with this firm was a great experience. Marsha Alban is a great attorney and very easy to work with!

    Read more

    Bronislava Abramova

  • google
    5.0/5.0

    This attorney office is highly efficient, amazing, and professional. They made me feel very comfortable and was invested in my interest. Communication through my whole experience was always professional and prompt. I highly recommend them to anyone w...

    Read more

    Babydoll Babydoll

  • google
    5.0/5.0

    I was in a car accident recently, and was lost in the process of what to do post my injuries. I contacted Feinberg & Alban, where I was introduced to Colleen Santora, who was the best resource I could have ever imagined. Colleen was knowledgable, emp...

    Read more

    OT Tips & Tricks for Kids

See all reviews
Awards & Affiliations
Contact us

Quick Contact Form