If you are attacked by someone else’s dog you may be able to recover compensation for your injuries under Colorado’s dog bite law. It’s important to understand what the law entails, what constitutes an injury and how long you have to file a personal injury claim.
Statute of Limitations for Dog Bite Lawsuits in Colorado
Every state has time limits when it comes to filing personal injury claims, and Colorado is no exception. Under Colorado law, negligence and strict liability injuries have a statute of limitations of two (2) years.
This means you are given two years to file a dog bite claim.
The clock starts ticking when you discover the injury, or should have discovered the injury. The “should have discovered” part of this rule applies primarily to medical malpractice and car accident cases, where injuries sometimes crop up weeks or months later. In most cases, the injuries sustained in a dog attack are visible and apparent. However, there could be internal injuries that may not be diagnosed right away.
If you file a claim after the two-year time limit, you will lose out on your rights to compensation. Therefore, do not delay. Start filing your claim soon after the incident happens.
Under Colorado law, a dog owner is strictly liable if the victim suffers serious bodily injury or death while legally on public or private property. The owner, however, is not liable if the victim provoked the dog or was trespassing on the dog’s property where there was clearly a “No Trespassing” or “Beware of Dog” sign. In addition, veterinarians, dog groomers, professional dog handlers and others who work with dogs cannot file a claim, as the owner is considered not liable.
“Serious bodily injury” is defined as an injury that carries a substantial risk of death. This includes disfigurement, significant impairment of a body part or organ, A broken or fractured bone, or second-degree or third-degree burn. The serious bodily injury does not have to be apparent at the time of the dog bite.
In a civil suit, the victim is allowed to recover only economic damages. Pain, suffering and other non-economic damages cannot be claimed.
Speak with a Dog Bite Lawyer at McCormick & Murphy Today
If you or a loved one has been the victim of a dog bite in Colorado, act quickly to ensure you receive the compensation you deserve. The skilled dog bite lawyers at McCormick & Murphy, P.C. have spent over 50 years of combined experience assisting those who have been injured in the area. Don’t lose out on your rights to compensation. Contact us today to schedule a free case evaluation.