Michigan Personal Injury Lawyer

Ann Arbor Dog Bite Lawyer


Accident Results






Compassionate and Aggressive Ann Arbor Dog Bite Lawyers

We Have Won Dog Bite Claims for Decades

Dogs may be referred to as man’s best friends, but sometimes, they turn vicious and attack, leading to dog bite injuries. You may be entitled to financial compensation under Michigan law if a dog attacks and bites you. However, succeeding in a dog bite case is not as easy as most people think, as there are defenses that can limit or bar you from receiving compensation.

This is why it is crucial to retain the services of a dog bite lawyer. At Goodman Acker, P.C., we have represented several dog bite victims for decades and have a successful track record. We will carefully review your case and guide you to make the best decision. Contact us at 248-286-8100 to schedule a free case review.

Why Choose Our Ann Arbor Dog Bite Lawyer?

At Goodman Acker, P.C., we believe no one should go through the trauma of being attacked, bitten, or injured by a dog. Whether you were attacked by your neighbor’s dogs or a stranger’s, you deserve compensation for the hurt you suffered. Our legal team consists of experienced dog bite lawyers, and we also have an in-depth understanding of Michigan’s dog bite laws and defenses.

Our attorneys are ethical, compassionate, trusted, and aggressive.

We will investigate the facts and build a strong dog bite case against the owner of the dog that bit you. Our lawyers will also help you deal with the dog owner’s insurance company, and we will fight to get you the best possible outcome. Our initial consultations are free, and we do not charge upfront fees.

Call us at 248-286-8100 for a free case evaluation.

Michigan’s Dog Bite Law

In Michigan, a dog owner will be liable for any injury caused by their pet if it happens in a public place or to a person lawfully on a property. Also, as a dog bite victim, you don’t have to prove that the dog owner was at fault or negligent. Instead, you must establish that:

  • The dog bite caused your injury
  • You didn’t provoke the dog
  • You were in a public place or, lawfully, in a private place when the bite occurred.

Under Michigan’s law, you are considered to be lawfully on a private property if you were there under the following conditions:

  • In the performance of any duty imposed by you by the laws of the state
  • In the performance of any duty imposed on you by U.S. postal regulations
  • If you are on the owner’s property as a guest, business customer, or client.

Also, depending on the case’s facts, you must establish that the dog owner knew or should have known that their dog has vicious propensities. While the law seems to favor the victim, dog owners have defenses available to them, the most common being provocation. The dog owner’s lawyers will argue that the bite happened because you provoked the dog.

For example, taunting the dog, taking away the dog’s toy, or pulling its tail. However, the law also states that the dog’s reaction must be proportional to the provocation. As a result, in most cases, the defense of provocation cannot be proven and is often left to a jury to decide.

Common Dog Bite Injuries

Dog bites can result in minor or severe injuries, and the most common include the following:

  • Puncture wounds
  • Nerve damage
  • Rabies
  • Lacerations
  • Bone fractures
  • Scratches
  • Disfigurement from scars, etc.

In some cases, a dog bite can lead to the death of the victim. In such an instance, the beneficiaries of the decedent can file a wrongful death lawsuit to recover compensation. Also, beyond physical injuries, a dog bite victim may suffer psychological damages like PTSD, leaving them with a fear of dogs. They can also receive compensation for this.

We are genuinely invested in every case we handle, and each client has a team dedicated only to their case.

What Should You Do after a Dog Bite Injury?

A minor dog bite injury can turn deadly if proper steps are not taken immediately. Therefore, do the following to safeguard your health and protect your case:

  • Place a clean towel over the injury site to stop any bleeding.
  • Keep the injured body part elevated, then wash the bite site carefully with soap and water.
  • Take photos of the injury site, as they serve as evidence. If the dog bite happened in a public place, get the statement and information of witnesses.
  • Apply a sterile bandage to the wound and go to the hospital for urgent care. At the hospital, you may receive treatment for rabies and a tetanus shot, as long as it is unconfirmed if the dog gets regular vaccinations. Your doctor might still recommend these treatments to keep you safe, even if the dog is vaccinated.
  • Notify Animal Control or the Police Department and file a written report.
  • Contact our Ann Arbor dog bite attorney to see if you are eligible for financial compensation.

Taking some of these steps might be impossible in cases where the dog bite injury is so severe you can’t move. In such an instance, call 911 to get an ambulance to take you to the hospital. Our lawyers will investigate your case and gather the evidence to prove the dog owner’s liability.

Who Can I Sue for a Dog Bite Injury in Ann Arbor, Michigan?

The dog owner is strictly liable for any injury their pet inflicts, and you can commence a personal injury claim against them. If the case succeeds, the dog owner will pay you for economic and noneconomic damages. Economic damages refer to the money you lost because of the bite injury, like medical bills, lost wages if the bite caused you to miss work, out-of-pocket expenses, etc.

On the other hand, noneconomic damages compensate for intangible losses, primarily the accident’s impact on your life. Examples are pain and suffering, emotional anguish, loss of enjoyment of life, etc. If the dog owner was very negligent, with disregard for the safety of others, you might be able to pursue punitive damages.

Punitive damages punish a grossly negligent person for their conduct and deter them and others from engaging in similar actions in the future. If your case qualifies for punitive damages, your compensation increases significantly. We have successfully recovered punitive damages for our clients and will carefully examine your claim to see if it qualifies for one.

We can help if you or someone you know was injured in a dog attack.

Ann Arbor Dog Bite Lawyer FAQs

Most dog bite victims get injured by their neighbors or relatives, causing them to question if they have a claim. Below, we answer some of the questions from dog bite victims. If you have more questions, our attorneys will answer them when you visit our law office.

Can I get compensation if I am bitten by a neighbor’s or relative’s dog?

Yes. You can still get compensation if your neighbor or relative’s dog bites you. However, most people shy away because they don’t want to sue their neighbors or friends. But seeking compensation is your right, and you should consider exercising it.

How long do I have to pursue a claim following a dog bite?

Under Michigan law, you have three years to pursue a dog bite claim. The time starts counting from the attack date, and you cannot get compensation once it elapses. However, if the dog bite victim is a child, the statute of limitation tolls, and the victim can file a claim by their 19th birthday.

Do I need a lawyer for my dog bite claim?

Not necessarily. However, having legal representation protects your rights and increases your chances of receiving compensation. Also, your attorney will help you deal with insurance companies and handle settlement negotiations.

How much does hiring a dog bite Lawyer in Ann Arbor cost?

Dog bite lawyers in Ann Arbor work on a contingency fee basis. This means they only take a percentage of the settlement, usually 33% to 40%. Also, your lawyer only gets paid when they win.

These may not be your only questions; our attorneys will discuss your specific concerns in your initial consult.

How Our Ann Arbor Dog Bite Lawyer Can Help

No personal injury claim is easy, including dog bite cases; therefore, you should not treat it lightly. Having our lawyers at your side gives you an advantage, as insurance companies will take you more seriously and will be less inclined to bully you into accepting a lowball settlement. Beyond protecting you from insurance companies, our lawyers will advise you on when to accept a settlement offer or turn it down and file a lawsuit.

Also, we will prove the dog owner’s negligence before the attack and call in experts if needed to show the dog’s propensity to violence. Although Michigan is not a ‘one-bite rule state,’ we will investigate the dog’s past to show the history of violent behavior and any past dog bite cases. We will update you throughout the process and are available 24/7 to listen to you.

Get Legal Representation from Our Experienced Lawyers

At Goodman Acker, P.C., we do not classify any case as more important than the others and give the same dedication and attention to every case we handle. We will help you seek compensation for your injuries and suffering and will not relent until we have a favorable outcome.

Call us now at 248-286-8100 to schedule a free, no-obligation case evaluation.
Attorney Barry Goodman


Barry J. Goodman has devoted his professional life to keeping courthouse doors open for victims seeking justice. Always a tireless advocate for his own clients, Goodman sees his responsibility as a Detroit personal injury attorney in a broader sense as well. [ Attorney Bio ]


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