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Will homeowner’s insurance cover the costs of a dog bite?

On Behalf of | Apr 11, 2022 | Personal Injury |

Dogs are often friendly animals, which is why people sometimes call them man’s best friend. However, just like with humans, not all dogs behave the same. Some of them are aggressive. Others are more prone to have intense fear responses to certain behaviors or people.

When dogs feel territorial or threatened, they may respond with aggression, biting someone and potentially causing serious injury or disfiguring wounds. Children are particularly vulnerable to such attacks both because of their smaller stature and because their high-pitched voices and quick movements are more likely to make a dog nervous than an adult’s actions or speech.

If a dog bit you or someone in your family, can you count on homeowner’s insurance to pay for the costs the dog bite creates?

Homeowner’s insurance often covers dog bites

You won’t need to worry about paying the big deductible on your health insurance policy if you make a claim against the owner’s insurance. If the animal’s owner has their own home and an active homeowner’s insurance policy, you may be able to make a claim against that insurance for the injuries you or your family member suffered.

In fact, the dog bite attack doesn’t even need to occur at someone’s house for their homeowner’s insurance to apply. You can make a claim against their homeowner’s or possibly renter’s insurance if the dog attacks you on the sidewalk or at a public park.

You can potentially file a claim for medical costs even lost wages if you need time off of work to recover. Insurance may also cover your property damage losses, like torn designer clothing or a cracked phone screen from when a dog knocked you over.

When insurance doesn’t protect you

Sometimes, the people attacked by dogs learn that insurance will not cover their losses. This could be an issue if the person who owned the animal was a renter who did not carry renter’s insurance. There may also be insurance coverage issues if the animal’s owner didn’t tell the insurance company about the dog’s presence at the property or misrepresented its breed. Such scenarios may require a civil lawsuit for the victim to recoup their losses.

Knowing your rights after a violent dog bite incident can help you recover the costs associated with any injuries you suffer.