How to Prove Fault in a Dog Bite Injury


One of the most critical questions to answer in a dog bite or other personal injury cases, is “who is at fault?”

As soon as it’s determined who is at fault, a judge will decide on a court date or a negotiated settlement that the at-fault-party will be ordered to compensate to the injured party.

In order to prove a personal injury case, certain elements must be proven:

  • The accident was caused by the other person’s wrongful or negligent act.
  • The victim suffered actual losses as a result of the accident.
  • The victim’s injuries were caused by the accident.
  • The person responsible for the victim’s losses has the means to provide compensation – either insurance or assets.
  • Most personal injury accidents occur because someone was careless or “negligent” during the incident.

No matter what type of personal injury case it is, the person who was less careful will be required to pay for some of the damages suffered by the more careless person.

If the injured person was also negligent during the accident, the compensation you receive may be reduced due to carelessness.

In order to win a lawsuit based on negligence, the injured person must prove that:

  • The owner had a responsibility to care and control his or her dog.
  • The owner showed carelessness and negligence by failing to meet that duty.
  • The owner’s negligence is the reason the injured person was caused harm.

States like Indiana and many others have strict liability laws, making dog owners automatically liable for most dog-bite injuries.


If you’ve sustained injuries from a dog bite, seek immediate medical attention and then report the dog bite if the hospital hasn’t already done so.

Until it’s determined the dog doesn’t have rabies, the health commissioner can have the dog quarantined. If the attack was particularly vicious, you can also file a police report.

Try to get information about the dog that attacked you and speak to the dog owner about incident and your medical expenses.

Dog bites are sometimes covered under the dog owner’s homeowners insurance.

If he or she doesn’t have homeowners insurance, or if you are unable to negotiate a settlement outside of court, you could choose to file a lawsuit.

Whether or not you pursue your case underneath common law or statutory law, you are entitled to full repayment for your dog bite injury.

Damages in dog attack cases usually include economic losses (medical costs, lost income, diminished future earnings, etc.) and non-economic losses (emotional distress, pain and suffering and punitive damages).


If you are the victim of a dog bite or other personal injury, don’t hesitate to get in touch with a Northwest Indiana personal injury lawyer.

An experienced attorney can help you file a lawsuit and make sure the dog owner is held responsible, so you can receive compensation for your injuries.

At the Alvarez Law Office in Crown Point, Indiana, we have successfully represented thousands of people for nearly 40 years and have extensive experience in dog bite cases and other personal injury cases. Contact us to schedule a free consultation.

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