(877) 244-6420 - Call for a free consultation with a Florida Accident Attorney

Posts Tagged "homeowners"

89-Year Old Mauled By Pit Bull, May Now Face Insurance Nightmare

Posted by on May 31, 2013 in Dog Bites

89-Year Old Mauled By Pit Bull, May Now Face Insurance Nightmare

Although Betty Meitzler felt terrorized when she was attacked by her neighbor’s pit-bull in Geneva, Seminole County last week, she might get an even bigger shock if she tries to collect money for her damages from the dog owner’s insurance company. 89-year old Ms. Meitzler claims the dog’s attack was unprovoked. She hit the dog as hard as she could with her cane, but only the dog’s owner could pull the offending pit-bull off of Ms. Meitzler. Unfortunately, this dog will likely be euthanized because it was already labeled a “dangerous dog” due to at least one previously reported attack. Under Florida law, Ms. Meitzler would clearly have a claim for damages against the dog’s owner. However, actually collecting money may well be another matter. First, if the dog’s owner does not have homeowner’s insurance, and has no real assets, it might not be worth the victim’s time to pursue an injury claim. Second — and perhaps most worrying to me as a Florida dog bite attorney — even if the homeowner has insurance, this kind of attack might not be covered. Several insurance carriers now write homeowners policies that include exclusions for dog bites, or exclusions for dog bites caused by certain breeds of dogs. Can you guess which breed of dog is almost always on these lists? That’s right — pit-bulls. In this instance, we are going to keep our fingers crossed that the owner of this pit-bull carried quality homeowner’s coverage, and that there is no dog bite exclusion of any kind that will apply to Ms. Meitzler. If you have any questions regarding a Florida dog bite attack, call Winter Park personal injury attorneys Kim Cullen and Robert Hemphill at...

Read More »

Flagler Dog Owner Responsible For ALL Damages Arising From Five Dog Attack

Posted by on May 13, 2013 in Dog Bites

Flagler Dog Owner Responsible For ALL Damages Arising From Five Dog Attack

When a dog bites someone in Florida, the dog’s owner is responsible for all of the damages the dog cause, regardless of whether they are obvious in the beginning, or not. WESH.com reported that Brandi Bookamer, a Bunnell woman who saved her child when the two of them were attacked by five dogs last week, was back in the hospital. Apparently, Ms. Bookamer’s wounds from the initial dog bites have not gotten infected, and thus have required additional treatment. In the meantime, the dogs owner has turned the dogs over to Flagler County authorities, and the dogs remain in quarantine. As a Florida dog bite attorney, Ms. Bookamer’s situation provides a couple of teaching points. First, consumers should know that dog owners are strictly liable when their dogs bite someone. The only exceptions are provocation or trespass. Second, dog owners are responsible for ALL of the damages caused by their dogs. Even if a dog’s initial bite seems somewhat minor or manageable (and I’m not suggesting that being attacked by five dogs would ever be considered minor), if those wounds get infected, or if the victim requires scar revisions or cosmetic or plastic surgery, all of those expenses (and any scarring left over) are the responsibility of the dog owner. For Ms. Bookamer’s sake, we are going to keep our fingers crossed that the owner of the five dogs that attacked her has homeowner’s insurance, and there there are no tricky insurance policy exclusions. If you have a question following a Florida dog bite, don’t hesitate to call Winter Park personal injury lawyers Kim Cullen and Robert Hemphill at...

Read More »

Posted by on Mar 6, 2013 in Uncategorized

We speak with many people who have been bitten by dogs here in Florida, and don’t know what to do.  Many people are under the mistaken impression that a dog must have a propensity for biting, or violence, before the dog’s owner can be held liable for injuries caused by the dog. Unlike many states, Florida features a strict liability statute that holds owners of dogs that bite liable (subject to some exceptions.)  However, collecting money can sometimes be a huge challenge due to ever-changing homeowners insurance policy language. I shot a short video discussing the most frequently asked questions we...

Read More »