Pennsylvania Dog Bite Claim FAQs

"Man's Best Friend" can sometimes become aggressive for no reason. A tame, loving dog that has shown absolutely no aggressive or threatening behavior could turn violent for no reason. Unfortunately, when you or a loved one is attacked by a dog, the physical, emotional, and financial damages can be devastating. Pennsylvania protects dog bite victims by holding the dog owner responsible for damages in a dog attack.

Below are answers to common questions about Pennsylvania dog bite claims. If you have additional questions, we encourage you to contact our office to meet with one of our experienced dog bite attorneys. It is vital that you act quickly to protect your right to receive compensation under Pennsylvania dog bite laws.

What Types of Compensation Can I Receive in a Dog Bite Claim?

Most dog bite claims in Pennsylvania involve two types of damages, economic and non-economic damages. Depending on the facts and circumstances of your claim, you may be entitled to receive compensation for damages including but not limited to:

Economic Damages in a Dog Bite Claim

  • Lost wages
  • Medical bills
  • Funeral expenses
  • Loss of earning capacity
  • Future lost wages and medical expense
  • Travel expenses
  • Other out-of-pocket expenses (i.e. over-the-counter medications, medical supplies, personal care, etc.)

Other Damages in a Dog Bite Claim

  • Disfigurement and scarring
  • Pain and suffering
  • Mental anguish
  • Loss of enjoyment of life
  • Permanent disability
  • Psychological trauma

What is the "one bite" rule?

Previous to amendments to Pennsylvania dog bite laws and recent court rulings, a dog owner was given a "pass" for the first dog bite if the dog owner could prove the dog did not have a history of aggression. This is not the case today. A dog owner can be held liable for your damages from a dog bite regardless of whether this is the first time the dog has bitten a person. The dog does not need to have a dangerous or aggressive history for the dog owner to be found liable for your damages.

Is There a Time Limit to File a Dog Bite Lawsuit in Pennsylvania?

Yes, you must file a dog bite lawsuit within two years from the date of the dog attack if you are 18 years of age or older. Minors have until their 20th birthday to file a dog bite lawsuit. However, you should not wait until the second year to contact our office. Our dog bite attorneys need to begin working on your case immediately to identify and preserve key evidence now rather than later.

Who is Responsible in a Dog Bite Case?

The person responsible for your injuries is typically the dog owner; however, you may also be responsible for your injuries if you intentionally provoked the dog. A landlord, property owner, or keeper may also be responsible in a dog bite claim. It is important to identify all parties responsible for your injuries to maximize your recovery in a Pennsylvania dog bite lawsuit.

Do I Have a Valid Dog Bite Claim?

In order to answer this question, our attorney needs to discuss the facts and circumstances of the incident with you. We offer a free consultation so that you can receive answers to your questions and you can get the facts about Pennsylvania dog bite claims before making any decisions.

Should I Settle with the Insurance Company Now?

No, you should not settle with an insurance company before seeking legal advice. Do not sign any releases or provide statements until you have spoken with an attorney. The insurance company does not have your best interest as its top priority - our personal injury attorneys will protect your rights.

What Is My Dog Bite Claim Worth?

Valuing a dog bite claim involves several factors. We do not want to settle your claim until we have all of the facts and your medical condition is fully known. Our attorneys have extensive experience valuing dog bite claims. We use every resource available to ensure you receive the maximum compensation allowable by law for your damages, losses, and injuries.

Harrisburg PA Dog Bite Attorneys

Contact the experienced Harrisburg dog bite lawyers of Handler, Henning & Rosenberg LLC for a free consultation by calling (888) 498-3023 or using our online contact form if you have been injured in a dog attack in Harrisburg or the surrounding areas. We want to help you recovery compensation for your dog bite claim by providing legal counsel and support as you recover from a Pennsylvania dog attack. Do not delay - you have a limited time to file a dog bite claim in Pennsylvania. Contact us to schedule your free consultation today.


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