South Carolina Dog Bites & Animal Attacks
Dog bite laws vary from one state to another. If you have been bitten by a dog in South Carolina, the law is strongly on your side. You may be able to recover the cost of your medical bills and other losses. An attorney can help you build a strong case so you can get the compensation you deserve.
What Does South Carolina Law Say About Dog Bites?
Dog owners are strictly liable for any injuries or damages their dogs cause in South Carolina. It does not matter if the dog had ever bitten before, or the owner had reason to believe the dog might be violent. The law also covers non-bite injuries, such as scratches or push-downs.
Of course, there are some caveats. The victim must not have been trespassing at the time of the attack. He or she must have been on public property or legally on private property, including the dog owner’s property. Strict liability also does not generally apply if the victim has provoked an attack, such as by teasing or tormenting the dog.
Building Your Case
If you decide to pursue a lawsuit, your attorney may ask for:
- Photographs of your injuries, taken as soon as possible after the attack
- Medical records describing your injuries and treatment
- Copies of your medical bills
- Torn or bloodied clothing, shoes, or other items that may have been damaged during the attack
You may also need to give a deposition. This is a statement you give under oath. It is your chance to explain what happened.
How Long Do You Have to File a Claim?
South Carolina law gives you three years from the date of the dog bite to file a claim against the dog's owner. (This is known as the statute of limitations.) If you and your South Carolina personal injury lawyer are unable to negotiate a settlement with the dog's owner (or his or her insurance company), you should consider filing a lawsuit before the statute of limitations runs out.
If your injury claim is for less than $7,500, you would file your personal injury lawsuit in the South Carolina magistrate claims court that has jurisdiction. For injury claims worth more than $7,500, you would file your lawsuit in the appropriate South Carolina circuit court.
Locate a Local South Carolina Dog Bite Attorney
If you have suffered dog bite injuries, you may be due compensation for your medical bills and other losses. Get help from a legal pro who handles these types of cases every day. Call now to speak with a South Carolina animal attacks lawyer at 877-913-7222.