WHAT TO DO IF YOU BECOME A DOG BITE VICTIM? (July 6, 2020)

If you or someone that you know is bitten by a dog, you should contact your local animal control or the police in more serious of situations. In Ontario, dog-bite cases are governed by the Dog Owners’ Liability Act, RSO 1990, c D.16. If a person is bitten by a dog, they have the right to sue the dog’s owner for damages. The Act makes dog owners strictly liable for all injuries and losses that are caused by bites to persons or other domestic animals, regardless of fault or negligence.

It is sometimes difficult to accurately determine how much settlement one would receive if they pursued a dog bite claim, as there are many different factors that are taken into consideration. Some of these considerations include: the training and treatment of the dog by the owner, the health and breed of dog, environmental conditions, and the circumstances that led up to the attack.

In order to know who, the responsible party is, one must understand who is considered the owner of a dog. The Ontario Court of Appeal decision in Wilk v. Arbour, 2017 ONCA 21, held that the person who is “in physical possession  and control over a dog just before it bites or attacks another person or animal” should be considered the dog’s owner. Effecitvely, the courts have ruled that even if you are not at actual owner, you can still be treated as such in civil litigation.

When a dog attacks a person or another animal, the extent of the injury can vary from a minor wound that only require a simple band-aid to severe one leaving permanent physical and psychological impairments. Hence why it is difficult to put a dollar figure on compensation. However, a good legal professional knows how to assist you in navigating the rules and extent of liability in Ontario law.

Accordingly, it is imperative to choose a knowledgeable legal counsel to assist you with your claim. At Empel Law, our legal team have a strong knowledge of liability law, the rules surrounding dog bites in Ontario, and is available to aid you with all of your personal injury questions/inquiries.

If you believe that you may have a claim for personal injury, do not hesitate to contact Arkadiusz J. Empel at Empel Law, by dialing 416-479-8531 (ext. 101).

Po Polsku (In Polish)

Arkadiusz J. Empel urodził się w Polsce, w Katowicach. Jest biegły w języku polskim i gotowy pomóc kliętkom w sprawach lokalnych oraz zagranicznych. Aby zasięgnąć pomoc oraz porade w języku polskim, prosze zadzwonić pod number 416.479.8531 (ext. 101).