Unfortunately, if your dog bites or hurts someone, you may be held liable for your dog's actions. In many cases, the court may order your dog to be put down due to his "vicious" nature. However, if you know that the incident was a fluke, there are ways that you can fight your dog's conviction with the help of an attorney. Here are three things that can help:
1. Character Witnesses
Character witnesses can be essential at establishing a person's character and likelihood of recidivism, but character witnesses aren't just relevant to cases involving humans. You can also use character witnesses to testify that your dog is normally friendly, relaxed and non-threatening.
If you don't have any neighbours, friends, old dog trainers or others to make positive statements about your dog, you may be able to take your dog in for temperament testing. If your dog passes, the individual who administered the temperament test can testify about the test and about your dog's character, or you can just use the results of the test as evidence in court.
2. Dog Obedience Classes
If your dog has never been implicated in an attack before, you may be able to save his or her life by showing the court that you are putting your dog on a clear path to obedience. Work with your lawyer to craft a remediation plan for your dog.
Your plan could include obedience classes, but it could also include adding new fencing to your yard, getting better supervision for your dog, or neutering or spaying your dog to make him or her act more calmly.
3. Comparative Liability
When someone takes you to court over a personal injury claim, such as a dog attack, you may be able to defer some of your responsibility by proving comparative liability. This simply means that it's not all your fault and that the plaintiff played a role in the attack as well.
In the case of a dog attack, you should question whether or not the plaintiff taunted the dog or otherwise tempted the dog to attack him or her. You could also consider where the attack happened. For example, if the plaintiff was trespassing on your property, he or she may be partly liable for the injuries, and that can help to make your dog look less guilty.
For more tips on how to fight a charge that your dog is vicious and needs to euthanised, contact a personal injury and criminal law attorney.
Hello, all. I am a volunteer worker at an outreach centre which helps people of all ages with financial problems. I have come to realise that many of these people face hardships due to life-changing incidents such as unfair dismissal, a workplace injury or a car accident. Many of them are hard workers who aren’t aware of their legal rights. Last year, our outreach centre brought a lawyer on board to provide legal advice and assistance. I help by scheduling appointments, taking notes and following up on each case. I have learnt an awful lot about our laws and am impressed how knowing the right legal avenues can change people’s lives. I have just started a legal assistant’s course and thought this blog might be a good place to record the knowledge I gain. I hope you find it useful and insightful. Thank you for stepping into my world.