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Owners are responsible for the harm their dogs cause

Dogs are wonderful additions to Hawaiian homes and in some cases the animals become cherished parts of their families. While most pet owners take their responsibilities seriously, from time to time a domestic animal such as a dog is involved in a dangerous personal injury incident. Dog bites can be serious medical conditions and this post will generally discuss how Hawaiian law addresses these unfortunate situations.

If a dog bites a person, the general rule of law suggests that the victim may have a claim against the dog's owner for the harm that the animal inflicted upon them. This could include medical costs associated with remedying the injury the dog caused, lost wages for time the victim had to take off of work, and pain and suffering for the trauma they had to experience. Dog owners are, in most cases, responsible for the actions of their pets.

However, several exceptions exist to this general mandate. If a victim provoked a dog into attacking them, then the victim's claims may not stand. A victim who abuses or otherwise incites a dog into aggressive action may be responsible for their own harm if the animal would not have otherwise attacked them. Additionally, victims who trespassed onto the land of others and were attacked by animals owned by the land owners may not have personal injury claims for their incident-related losses.

It is always a good idea for the victim of an animal attack or dog bite to contact a personal injury attorney about their possible claims. Statutes of limitations can toll personal injury claims and can prevent victims from seeking the compensation that they deserve.

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Turbin Chu Heidt Attorneys at Law
737 Bishop Street
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Honolulu, HI 96813

Phone: 808-379-3586
Phone: 808-528-4000
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