Utah’s Attorneys for Dog Bites
a dog bite?
Dog bites can be frustrating, from having to deal with pain and suffering, medical bills, and even the possibility of having to get rounds of rabies shots.
If you’re reading this page, you or someone you know may be dealing with the above. At Steele Adams Hosman, we’re here to help.
There are a few points to consider when dealing with a dog bite in Utah. There’s a limited time in which you can file your suit. Additionally, Utah has a specific dog law that can benefit you. On this page, we’ll look at each so you can better understand what to expect.
Utah’s Dog Law
Utah’s dog law says that anyone who owns or keeps a dog is liable for any damages or injuries committed by the dog, no matter if the owner knew the dog was prone to dangerous behavior or not (18-1-1).
You’ll notice in the above phrase that it doesn’t specifically state “dog bite.” While dog bites are certainly covered with the above law, this law also includes any injuries by a dog. Let’s say a dog damaged your property or knocked you down. The above law would still apply to your case.
There are limited defenses against Utah’s dog law. However, there are exceptions, and one applies to dogs used by law enforcement. If a dog trained for law enforcement injures someone while the dog “is reasonably and carefully being used in the apprehension, arrest, or location of a suspected offender or in maintaining or controlling the public order,” then there is no liability.
Additionally, there is another defense against Utah’s dog law, which we’ll talk about below.
Utah has a comparative negligence law, which means that if the court feels that you were partly to blame for the accident, you can still receive compensation provided that your part of the allocated blame is less than all other people’s fault (Utah code 78B-5-818).
A defense that a dog owner can use is if you instigated the attack in some way. To see how comparative negligence works, let’s say that your medical expenses and other damages total $10,000 and the jury finds you 10% at fault. The court would award you $9,000 instead of the $10,000 since they would subtract the 10% fault from what you were seeking.
We’ve Got Your Back
You are not alone! We are here to guide you through what can seem like a complicated process and explore your options for a dog bite settlement.