dog walker walking dogs along suburban street

Dog Bites & Personal Injury Laws in North Carolina: 3 Things You Should Know

Although most dogs are perfect companions to their human counterparts, some are far from man’s best friend. If you’ve been bitten and or injured by a dog in North Carolina, you may be able to file a claim to help cover any costs incurred by your attack. Learn more about your options with this helpful guide. 

Dog bite injuries often include a visit to the doctor or more complex medical costs, and can even incur the loss of work time and wages, pain and suffering, or property damage. And in addition to temporary physical damages, severe dog attacks may lead to long-lasting permanent damage or psychological suffering. Having a personal injury lawyer can ensure your rights are protected and you receive just financial compensation.


Three important things to know about dog bite laws

1. Insurance issues can be complex for both renters and homeowners

Not all pet owners have insurance that could cover a personal injury or dog attack claim. And some have no insurance coverage for these types of incidents at all -- and may be responsible for paying out-of-pocket. 

As an injured party, you can file for a judgment. But if the defendant doesn’t have financial resources to cover the judgment, how will you get paid? For dog owners who are renters, this can often mean a judgment is never paid (the renter just may not have the funds). Some apartment complex landlords require renters to have insurance for just such occasions.

When it comes to home and property owners,  there is often an umbrella insurance coverage that may cover the dog bite attack. 


2. North Carolina state dog bite laws are unique

In our home state, a dog’s history can influence your case. North Carolina is one of just a handful of states that adhere to the “one bite rule”. This legal protection can protect the dog owner, if your injury from an attack is the dog’s first offense. The reasoning for this law is that sometimes the dog owner has no reason to believe their pup would ever attack another person.  

A few North Carolina cities and metro areas count specific dog breeds as dangerous, which can further complicate personal injury laws. Unregistered dogs of the following breeds some a few examples of potentially vicious dogs:

  • Bull terrier 
  • Staffordshire bull terrier  
  • American pit bull terrier
  • American Staffordshire terrier 
  • Rottweiler 
  • Chow Chow 

If someone within a restricted city is injured by one of the above dogs, they may have a stronger case for filing criminal charges. 


3. Hiring a personal injury lawyer for your dog bite case is essential

There are vast and varied nuances to managing a dog bite case in the state of North Carolina, which is why having an experienced personal injury lawyer is key to your claim. Our staff can help you review your options and best proceed with your case and deal with insurance companies to manage your claim.

Please give Wilson Williams Law a call at (888) 253-4071 today to learn more about how we can help you work through your dog bite personal injury claim. We’re here to help support you, every step of the way and look forward to getting you on the right track for a just settlement and swift recovery.

 Note: This blog is intended to be informational only and shall not be construed as legal advice.