How long do you have to file a claim after a dog bite?

On Behalf of | Dec 27, 2022 | Personal Injury

A dog bite can have a long-lasting impact on a person’s life. They may need long-term medical care, including reconstructive surgery. They may need to spend time away from work to care for their health. They may even have permanent scarring or other changes to their appearance.

With so many changes to address, people may want to focus on their medical care rather than their legal options in the immediate aftermath of a bite. However, it is important for injured people to know the statute of limitations for their case. If a dog bites you, how much time do you have to file a lawsuit?

What is the statute of limitations on dog bite lawsuits?

A dog bite can leave people with significant medical costs, and a legal claim can provide necessary compensation as they recover. However, you must file within a specific timeframe in order to receive this support. Under Pennsylvania law, people injured by a dog bite have up to two years from the date of the injury to file a claim against the dog’s owner.

Why might you want to explore your options sooner?

With up to two years to file a claim, you may be tempted to delay. Unfortunately, that choice could make it more difficult to prove a dog owner’s negligence in court.

One important reason to act soon after a dog bite is that you can preserve evidence. Witness testimonies, recordings of the incident from security cameras, damaged clothing or other property, photographs of injuries and statements from doctors can all support your claim. This evidence is much easier to collect soon after the accident.

If you or a loved one was harmed by an animal bite, it may be helpful to seek legal guidance. Not only can an attorney help you keep statutes of limitations in mind, they can also take steps to preserve evidence while you heal.

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