Schemery Zicolello

Recent cases confirm rising number of dog bites in Pennsylvania

Homeowners and businesses have a responsibility to keep their premises free of dangerous property conditions. Sometimes, an aggressive dog can be just as hazardous as any other danger. Homeowners have a responsibility to control their dogs to protect others from accidents, or they may pay damages in a premises liability lawsuit.

When a negligent property owner does not control his or her dog and a person is bit, it can lead to serious dog bite injuries -- and serious ramifications for the dog owner.

A recent report has shown that dog bite rates are on the upswing in Pennsylvania. According to a study released by State Farm Insurance, Pennsylvania rated fifth in the nation in 2011 for dog bites. This is up from sixth place in 2010.

The report says that 197 claims were reported and $4.9 million in claims were processed in Pennsylvania. Most of the victims were children and the elderly.

Two recent dog bite incidents in Pennsylvania illustrate the findings from this new report. In one attack, a woman was at a friend's house when she was bitten by her friend's American English bulldog. The woman had to get more than 20 stitches on one of her hands after the attack.

In another recent attack, a two-year-old in Lancaster needed to be taken to the hospital after being bitten in the back of the head by a pit bull. The boy was visiting the home of the dog's owner at the time of the attack and had been playing with dog prior to the bite.

The victims of these dog bites have a right to compensation for their injuries. Under Pennsylvania laws, they may be entitled to compensation for pain and suffering, therapy costs, medical expenses and other costs. An experienced premises liability attorney will be able to ensure that victims of dog bites are fairly compensated for their injuries.

Source: York Daily Record, "Dog bites up in Pennsylvania," Rebecca LeFever, May 21, 2012

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Commonwealth v. Candice Steinbacher – Motion for Judgement Acquittal Granted

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