If a dog bite or other pet attack leaves you injured, call George Sink, P.A. Injury Lawyers today. Our dog bite and animal attack lawyers in Beaufort, South Carolina, represent Lowcountry residents and visitors by helping them recover compensation for injuries caused by household pets.
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Our personal injury team has represented many victims of pet attacks. Most of the matters we’ve handled involve dog bites because those are the most common injury caused by domesticated animals, but we have also counseled victims of other pet attacks.
Of course, we cannot guarantee the results of any case because each animal attack is unique. However, a dog bite and animal attack lawyer serving Beaufort, SC, can promise to represent our clients with the utmost diligence and compassion in pursuing the best possible outcome.
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South Carolina Dog Bite and Animal Attack Laws and Ordinances
South Carolina laws and town ordinances contain rules designed to protect the public from dog bites and other animal attacks. According to Beaufort ordinances, residents may not own pit bulls unless they follow detailed restrictions and may not bring pet snakes and reptiles out in public unless the pets are bagged or caged.
Even when residents comply with these rules, animal attacks still happen. Fortunately, South Carolina law gives victims of animal-related attacks the right to seek compensation.
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How South Carolina Handles Dog Bites
S.C. Code § 47-3-110 treats dog bites as a special category of injury. Under the law, when a dog attacks someone in a public place or on private property, “the dog owner or person having the dog in the person’s care or keeping is liable for the damages suffered by the person bitten or otherwise attacked.” There are only three exceptions to this rule:
- The victim was a trespasser on the owner’s property.
- The victim “provoked or harassed the dog and that provocation was the proximate cause of the attack.”
- The dog was a police canine acting on the lawful command of a law enforcement official.
Beaufort-area dog owners, particularly owners of dogs designated as “restricted” or “dangerous” under town ordinances, may also face criminal liability for an attack (or even for creating a condition that could lead to one).
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A Non-Dog Animal Attack Case
Attacks by any other domesticated animal (even unusual ones) fall under South Carolina’s more generalized legal doctrines of “premises liability” and negligence. Lawyers use the term “premises liability” to refer to the legal liability of a property owner to visitors under certain conditions.
In animal attack cases, a property owner need not be the owner of the animal to have potential liability for damages. An animal attack attorney can help determine if the owner of a property where a pet injured you owes you damages.
Independent of property owners, pet owners may also be legally liable to victims of pet attacks by failing to act in a manner that prevents reasonably predictable injuries (if they act “negligently”).
For example, if someone brings his pet ferret out in public and fails to warn children who want to pet it that ferrets can bite unprovoked, he may be legally liable for any injuries the ferret causes.
Legal Support in Your Beaufort, South Carolina Dog Bite or Animal Attack Case
After suffering a dog bite, you should seek medical treatment immediately and follow other important steps. Bites or scratches that break the skin pose an extremely high risk of infection and must be treated with the utmost seriousness. Victims or their families should also promptly report the attack to the appropriate animal control authorities.
We also encourage dog bite and pet attack victims to seek legal advice from an attorney to learn whether they have a right to recover damages for their injuries. We help victims take appropriate action to recover payments from insurance companies and other parties responsible for the attack, even if that means taking legal action in Beaufort County courts.
When a dog or other domesticated animal injures a visitor or resident of Beaufort, the knowledgeable pet injury liability lawyers at George Sink, P.A. Injury Lawyers can help. Contact us by phone or online for a free case review with a dog bite and animal attack lawyer serving Beaufort, SC, at one of our offices around the state, your home, or even the hospital.
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