Making a Claim for Dog Bite Injuries in British Columbia

Getting Dog Attack Compensation in BC

Have you been bitten or attacked by a dog in BC? If so, you may be entitled to compensation from the dog owner. Typically, owners of dogs have a home insurance policy that provides coverage to the owner in the event of a dog bite injury even if the incident occurs outside of the owners property, for example at a park or while out on a walk.

Potential to change one’s life forever

Dog bites and attacks may not seem as serious as car accidents; however, they have the potential to change one’s life forever. Dog bites can result in life-changing injuries and in some cases, disabilities such as permanent scarring and numbness due to nerve damage. The impact of attacks can also cause victims to suffer from emotional trauma, such as post-traumatic stress disorder, and even loss of income.

Law in BC, the “one bite rule”

The law in British Columbia on dog bites is based on the “one bite rule”. This mean that a person who has been injured as a result of a dog bite will only succeed in a lawsuit against the dog owner if the owner knew or had reason to know that the dog was likely to cause that kind of injury. If a dog has bitten before or has displayed vicious behaviour, such as growling or lunging at people without provocation, then the owner is to be “on notice” from that moment on that the dog is dangerous, and will be liable if the dog later causes injury to someone.

Suing the dog owner for compensation

You may still be successful in suing the owner for compensation arising out of your dog bite injuries in cases where the owner of the dog isn’t liable under the “one bite rule”. Dog owners may still be liable for being negligent in situations such as unreasonable lack of care and attention in controlling the dog. This can include situations where the dog is not kept on a leash in places other than off-leash designated areas or left to run at large.

What to do after a dog attack in BC

Before you seek legal advice though it is important that you seek medical attention and advice regarding rabies treatment and infections. It is also important that you report the incident to your local animal control office. Look up your city’s animal control office and provide them with as much detail as possible. It is imperative that you do so to not only allow the animal control officers to investigate the incident and contact the owners but also to prevent other potential attacks.

Farouk Jiwa

Farouk Jiwa

Mr. Jiwa has practiced exclusively in personal injury litigation for almost 14 years with a primary emphasis on ICBC Claims. Mr. Jiwa has handled cases involving all different types of accidents such as motor vehicle accidents, bicycle accidents, pedestrian accidents, motorcycle accidents, bus accidents, boating accidents, burn injuries, product liability claims, slip and falls, dog bites, and a wide array of injuries ranging from minor soft tissue injury claims to brain injury claims to fractures to catastrophic injury claims.

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