Value of Dog Bite

The value of a dog bite depends on: how much damage the dog has done, whether it is readily visible, how significant or even grotesque the injury may be, whether the dog bite may have interfered with the victim’s physical functioning and whether the incident has left psychological scars, etc. As with many of these…

Is a Dog’s Breed Relevant to Damages?

We have all heard folks say that certain breeds of dogs are just, by virtue of their breed, dangerous animals; e.g., pit bulls. This may be untrue, and the dog’s violent tendencies may be a function of poor stewardship/management by the dog owner. I am not knowledgeable enough to offer an opinion, but there are…

Several Only Liability

Under Michigan law, specifically MCLA §600.2956, liability is “several only”, and is not “joint”. What that means is that a defendant cannot be held liable for anything greater than their percentage contribution of negligence. For example, if damages are assessed at $100,000.00 in a dog bite case, the dog owner is considered no more than…

Defense Under Common-Law Negligence

Negligence of the bite victim is greater than 50% Under Michigan’s negligence rules, if a jury believes that a sober injury victim (in any type of case, be it an auto accident case, a premises liability/slip and fall case, or anything else), is more than 50% the cause of their own injuries, the jury is…

Dog Bites Common-Law Negligence

The term “common-law” merely refers to the body of law that has developed over time, from accumulating appellate court cases, dealing with specific subjects. Generally speaking, when a cases is appealed to a higher court, that higher court’s ruling can have the force of law, because that higher court is interpreting what they consider to…

Trespassing in Relation to Dog Bite Laws

Notice that the Michigan statute, MCLA §287.351, relieves the dog owner of liability, where the dog bite victim is not on the property lawfully. The law recognizes that many people keep dogs, not just as loving pet-members of the family, but also for the security and protectiveness they bring to the household. Dogs are “pack”…

Dog Bites – Provocation

A dog owner will not be liable if it can be shown that the bite victim somehow provoked the dog. There is no hard and fast rule as to what constitutes provocation; it should be judged on a case by case basis, which means it should be decided by a jury, at time of trial, and…