beautiful but intimidating doberman in spiked collar | Dog Bite Laws in ColoradoEach state handles dog bite liability differently. Some states have a strict liability law, while others have a negligence rule for dog bites. Strict liability states hold the dog owner responsible for any damages their pet causes. In these states, an injured dog bite victim doesn’t have to prove that the dog owner was negligent or knew of the dog’s aggression. They simply have to show that they were injured by that dog.

Other states operate under the negligence rule, which means that dog bite victims must show that the dog owner was negligent or that the dog had previously attacked others. The liability is the result of keeping a dog who is known to bite. This is also known as the “one bite rule.” If the dog has never attacked others, but the owner was found to be negligent (such as letting their dog roam free) then there may also be grounds for filing a dog bite lawsuit.

Some states, however, have a “mixed dog bite” rule, which embodies the one bite rule while containing at least some degree of strict liability. Colorado is one of those states.

  • Colorado & Strict Liability – When a dog bite causes serious injury or even death, dog bite laws in Colorado apply a strict liability requirement to the dog owner. They are responsible for those injuries, even if they were not aware that their dog would bite or act aggressively. In order for this strict liability statute in Colorado to apply, a person must be injured on public property or an invited guest on private property and not trespassing at the time of the attack.
  • Colorado & Negligence – When a dog bite is not serious, Colorado uses a negligence rule. This means that the injured dog bite victim must establish negligence when filing a claim. They must show that the dog owner failed to use reasonable control with their dog and an injury occurred. Unlike a dog bite statute, this negligence rule can apply to all injuries – not just bites. For example, if a dog is running off leash and knocks over an elderly person, and that person breaks their hip, they could seek compensation from the dog owner for their injuries.

Even those dog owners who reside in a one bite or mixed dog bite state must be aware they can be held liable for violating a municipal leash law which leads to injury, premises liability, negligence, outrageous or reckless behavior involving the dog or intentional conduct involving the dog. In particular, the mixed dog bite statutes can be challenging to decipher, making it even more important to speak to a knowledgeable personal injury attorney as quickly as possible.

Contact Our Denver Dog Bite Lawyers

Paysinger Law, P.C. in Lakewood, COIf you or someone you love has suffered from a dog bite injury, we can help. Our attorneys can determine if you are eligible to file a claim against the dog owner and help you obtain the money you need to recover. Call the dedicated personal injury attorneys at Paysinger Law, P.C. today to discuss your case. Our Lakewood law firm offers FREE case consultations and can be reached at 303.279.0221.



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