Dog bites are, unfortunately, a common occurrence among adults and children and can lead to permanent disfigurement or injury, psychological trauma, or even death.
Michigan dog bite law holds the owner of the attacking dog liable for any injuries suffered by the person bitten if the attack was unprovoked and it occurred while the parties were on public property or lawfully on private property, including the property of the owner of the dog.
The term “dangerous animal” is used in animal attack cases and can refer to a dog or other animal that bites or attacks a person. However, if someone is bitten or attacked while trespassing on the animal owner’s property, if they have provoked the animal, or if the animal has acted in a reasonable manner to protect their owner, the animal in question would not be considered a “dangerous animal.”
Whether or not the dog has been known to be vicious in the past (and whether or not the owner is aware of previous incidences of the dog attacking) is irrelevant in Michigan dog bite law. It also does not matter if the dog has always been docile and gentle and has never been vicious.
The Michigan dog bite law protects individuals who have been invited to the dog owner’s property as a guest, customer, or client, and also extends to people who are on the dog owner’s property because of any duty imposed upon them by state law or U.S. postal regulation.
If you have been a victim of an unprovoked dog bite or attack – this can include injuries suffered because of an animal’s claws or being knocked over by the animal – you may have the right to recover damages from the dog’s owner.
An experienced personal injury attorney will help you fight whatever questions arise in regards to provocation – there is at times a fine line between intentional and unintentional provocation of a dangerous animal that can make the difference between the animal’s owner being liable for damages or not.