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North Carolina Dog Bites & Animal Attacks



Dog bites are in a class of personal injury law all their own. And the laws vary from one state to another. It may seem that a dog's owner should always be liable for injuries the animal causes, but this is not always the case. Dog bite laws are tricky in states like North Carolina. That is why it is so crucial to consult with a North Carolina attorney.

North Carolina Dog Bite Laws

North Carolina law makes it difficult for dog bite victims to recover costs for their injuries. The state adheres to a version of the "one-bite" rule. Under this rule, a dog owner is only liable if the dog had a known propensity for violence. Usually, the most obvious example is that the dog bit someone before—thus the "one bite." But North Carolina has more specific criteria.

In North Carolina, a “potentially dangerous dog” is one that has:

  • Bitten a person severely enough to cause broken bones or disfigurement, or require cosmetic surgery
  • Killed or severely injured a domestic animal not on the owner's property
  • Terrorized a person when not on the owner's private property

There is one key exception to the one-bite liability rule in North Carolina. A dog owner is liable for injuries caused by any dog, six months or older, that is allowed to roam "at large" at night regardless of any prior violent behavior.

Because dog bite laws in North Carolina are so unfavorable to victims, it is critical that you retain a lawyer who is well versed in these matters. It may also help to document your injuries:

  • Take photos of your wounds soon after they happen.
  • Preserve evidence, such as torn or bloodied clothing.
  • Get statements from any witnesses.

Learn more about dog bite prevention in North Carolina.

Locate a Local North Carolina Dog Bites Attorney

If you have been bitten by someone’s dog in North Carolina, you may be due compensation for your injuries and other losses. Get in touch with an attorney who knows the dog bite laws in your state. Call now to speak with a North Carolina animal attacks lawyer at 877-913-7222.