In New York State, dog bite laws combine the one-bite rule with limited strict liability. Under the one-bite rule in New York State, dog owners are typically not liable for dog bite injuries if they had no prior reason to believe that their dog would act aggressively. However, if the owner knew or had prior knowledge of their dog’s aggressive behavior or the dog had attacked or bitten someone before, they can be liable under New York’s “dangerous dog” provisions.
If a dog has been previously identified as a “dangerous dog,” New York imposes strict liability on the dog owner, who then becomes liable for the victim’s medical and veterinary expenses. However, for other damages, such as pain and suffering or lost wages, the victim must:
- Prove that the dog had a dangerous demeanor that the owner knew or should have known about.
- The owner’s failure to recognize and properly handle their aggressive dog resulted in injuries to the victim.
In addition, New York’s Agriculture & Markets Code section 123 addresses the civil liability of dog owners when their dogs cause harm. If a dog is classified as “dangerous,” its owner is responsible for injuries caused to people, livestock, or companion animals. “Dangerous dogs” are defined as those that attack and injure without justification or exhibit behavior posing an imminent threat of serious harm. Dog owners of “dangerous dogs” are strictly liable for medical bills, regardless of precautions taken, while other damages require proving negligence. For instance, property damage claims necessitate demonstrating the owner’s failure to prevent the incident.
If you have been bitten by a dog in New York City, it is important to understand your rights and the legal options available to you. The New York City dog bite lawyers at The Barnes Firm have extensive knowledge of New York State dog bite laws and can help you navigate the legal process. If you’ve been injured by a dog bite attack in NYC, call us today at (800) 800-0000 and find out what your case is worth.