3 Apr

Has Someone Else’s Dog Caused You To Wreck? Learn What Florida’s Strict Liability Laws Have To Say About Who Is At Fault

Car Accidents

Has Someone Else’s Dog Caused You To Wreck? Learn What Florida’s Strict Liability Laws Have To Say About Who Is At Fault

All animal lovers probably have let their dog hitch a ride on their lap or passenger seat a time or two. Most of the time, especially with well-behaved dogs, it seems harmless; but there is always still a risk when dogs have the ability to roam about vehicles on their own terms, and sometimes even when they’re detained in a crate or car seat. Though it isn’t explicitly stated in Florida’s laws, having a dog in your lap or even the back seat could be considered a form of distracted driving. A simple scratch, bark, jump, or other movements can startle a driver and cause them to wreck. If your pet ends up causing you to crash, whether you’re the only one involved or there are additional parties, Florida’s strict liability laws will likely hold you responsible for the damages or injuries caused. If you were injured by a driver who was distracted by a pet, you might be eligible to pursue compensation. Call The Florida Law Group for a free consultation and learn more today. 

Florida Law On Driving With A Pet

In Florida, there are no specific laws or rules on pets and how they ride inside vehicles; however, Florida Statutes section 316.1925 states that any person operating a vehicle on the streets or highways within the state shall drive the same, in a careful and prudent manner, having regard for the width, grade, curves, corners, traffic, and all other attendant circumstances, so as not to endanger the life, limb, or property of any person. This means that a pet is not a legal or reasonable cause for being distracted from careful and prudent driving. If someone is distracted by a pet, causing them to wreck their vehicle alone or into someone else, they will be held responsible. 

If someone else’s dog caused them to crash into you, you might face extensive medical costs for your injuries, including but not limited to the following: 

  • Hospital/ER stay
  • Medication
  • Surgery
  • CT scans/X-rays/MRIs
  • Crutches/wheelchair/body cast
  • Physical or psychiatric care
  • And more! 

You may also have to take time off of work in order to fully recover, which puts a halt to your income, causing you additional financial strife. It is also possible that being involved in any kind of wreck can leave you with trauma, so it may be necessary for you to speak to someone like a therapist, which, unfortunately, is not typically covered by insurance and is rather pricey. It isn’t fair for you to suffer physically, financially, and emotionally from an accident that you didn’t cause. If someone has crashed into you, even if their pet is at the root of the cause, that driver or person will be held liable for the cost of damages, and The Florida Law Group can help ensure that that is the case. 

What If Someone’s Dog Runs Out & Causes Me To Wreck?

Strict liability is a legal term that means an individual is responsible for any damages resulting from their own actions. Florida statute 767.01 is a strict liability law that states that dog owners are liable for any damage done by their dogs to a person or to any animal included in the definitions of “domestic animal.” This means that if someone’s dog gets loose and runs out in front of you, causing you to crash, they will still be held responsible for your injuries and damages. 

What’s Next?

Regardless of the type of accident you’re in, Florida has a statute of limitations regarding the allotted time you have to claim accident injuries. Legally, you must take legal action four years from the accident date. Otherwise, you will be prohibited from pursuing a claim. Therefore, you must act swiftly when you’re injured by someone whose dog caused them to drive distracted and crash into you or someone who allowed their dog to get loose, thus causing you to wreck your vehicle. 

Oftentimes, the at-fault driver or person’s insurance company will attempt to deny or devalue your claims, so they can keep more money in their pocket. At The Florida Law Group, we aren’t afraid to hold the at-fault party and their insurance company responsible. We are willing and able to fight for you and help you secure the compensation you deserve. 

How The Florida Law Group Can Help

The Florida Law Group has a winning track record of helping accident victims reach a favorable outcome. Our aggressive attorneys can guide you each step of the way and answer any legal questions you may have. The best part about our services is they are 100% risk-free. What this means is you don’t owe any upfront or out-of-pocket costs for us to be able to serve you! We charge on a contingency fee basis, so we only get paid if and when we win your case. When we do, our legal fees are simply repaid from your settlement amount. 

About Our Firm

The Florida Law Group is one of the state’s most reputable law firms. We have serviced Florida residents for over 100+ years and have helped secure over $1 billion for victims of various types of accidents. We’ve also been featured in the Wall Street Journal, CBS News, the Tampa Bay Times, and other news sources, in addition to the recognition we’ve received from prestigious legal entities across the nation like The National Trial Lawyers Top 100, Best Lawyers in America, Florida Super Lawyers, The National Association of Distinguished Counsel, Multi-Million-Dollar Advocates Forum, Avvo and more. 

We are passionate about helping those who’ve been wronged seek justice against distracted and other negligent drivers. We can do the same for you. If you’ve been injured by a driver who was distracted by their dog, or let their dog get loose, call today for a free consultation with one of our Fort Lauderdale accident injury attorneys. Our legal team is equipped to guide you through the process of securing compensation for your accident and injuries. Call now!