Do I need evidence for dog bite claim? If so, what kind?

The state of Iowa imposes a strict liability statute regarding dog bites. Strict liability means that the owner of a dog is liable for “all damages caused” by his or her dog unless the victim is performing an illegal act at the time of the attack.

Under statutory law, then, the dog bite victim does not need to prove negligence. Under case law, though, more evidence will be required. Here’s an overview of the types of evidence for dog bite claim you'll need.

Evidence Necessary Under Statutory Law

If you’re pursuing a dog bite claim under statutory law, the type of evidence you’ll need is relatively straightforward. Mostly, you’ll need to prove the following.

  • The dog in question was the dog that bit you
  • That you suffered injuries as a result of the bite/attack
  • That you were not doing anything illegal at the time of the bite/attack

Other than these three items above, there is relatively little else that you’ll need to establish.

Evidence Necessary Under Case Law

To recover damages under the common law, or case law, however, you’ll need to establish the negligence of the dog owner. If you can prove negligence, you may be able to recover a greater damages amount, including damages for pain and suffering.

Courts consider a situation as dog owner negligence when the dog owner knows that the dog is dangerous, but yet fails to restrain it. For example, if the dog had rabies and the owner knew or should have reasonably known about it, but failed to control the dog, then the owner acted negligently. Or, if the dog had bitten someone in the past, and the owner didn’t restrain the dog properly, then the owner acted negligently.

To recover damages under case law, and then, you’ll need to prove the following.

  • That the owner knew or should have known of the dangerous dog’s nature
  • That the owner failed to take action to prevent the dog bite/attack
  • That the dangerous dog bit or attacked you
  • That you suffered injuries as a result of the bite/attack

If you can prove the above, then you’ll be eligible to recover damages for the full extent of injuries suffered.

What should I do next?

If a dog in Iowa has bitten you, you might want to read our dog bites blogs about psychological injuries following a dog bite, and three reasons to hire a dog bite attorney. Then, call our offices to schedule your free case consultation. At Walker, Billingsley & Bair, we want to represent you! Dial 888-435-9886 today.

Corey Walker
With 19 years legal experience, Corey has been recognized for his work as an injury attorney.