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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2020
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    3

    Default What to Do if Someone is Suing You for a Possible Dog Bite and Story is a Lie

    My question involves an injury that occurred in the state of: California

    Almost 2 years ago we were having a get together with all close friends. I had a litter of puppies 6 weeks old. A friends child, our granddaughter a other friends older kids were playing in an outdoor area with the pups. About 6 of us were within 3 ft or so of this area with a open pool type fencing. So very view-able and close. My husband let our other two dogs out to potty in the dog yard were pups were. Mind you I have raised dogs for many many years so both dogs were born and raised in my home from day one. One of the dogs was the pups mom so of course the pups all raced over and latched on to her before she hardly got into the yard. My husband let them in the yard and had to walk some distance back around into our pool area, as we all were talking one of our friends daughters starting crying and it was obvious she was hurt. There was no noise or anything unusual as we would have heard it being so close. Only one of her parents were outside where this occurred along with many others. We ran and got her and the first thought was she fell or we weren't sure. Another friends older kids were the only one who saw anything stating the younger child bent down and was pulling a puppy off of my dog. No one saw a biting, but she had a laceration under her eye at eye lash area. There is other stuff here I will leave out to not say something I shouldn't. Her mom and grandma were inside our home. No one heard any aggression of any kind. So it's not know really if our dog turned when she felt her pup hurting her nipple and due to the fact the childs face was right there pulling the pup and she caught her with a tooth or nail or maybe even the sharp nails of a puppy. Her parents rushed her to ER. Many offered to drive them but they declined. Due to the fact that there wasnt a plastic surgeon on duty ( due to where the cut was) they had to take her to a hospital out of the area. We felt bad she had been hurt on our property. These were very close friends. We checked in constantly. Have many text of the communications. They knew what ever happened was just a fluke and there was no fault. They didn't even want to say anything about it could have involved a dog not wanting to have a problem for us. At some point they were told they had no option but to give information which was fine. We asked if we needed to contact our home owners but they wanted to wait and see as they knew it was an accident either way and didn't want it to cause problems. When she got home we went over with gifts and all. For months everything was fine and text communication is documented. Now know my dogs are raised with more people and kids than most people dogs. We are foster parents, have our own kids and our house is that house every ones kids, football teams and all hang out at. She has been raised with very young kids to teenagers. She has never been aggressive and loves the kids. She has had children in her whelping box and all. So months later they want to come by and bring some out of pocket costs and had their own insurance take care of the majority as it was a fluke accident. We had offered our insurance and said we would help pay some cost. The list they brought included stuff as minimal as a subway sandwich they had bought while out of town. A minimal cost eye cream and on and on. We offered to half the costs of out of pocket. Things began to change. They wanted to take no responsibility of incident it became all our fault. Soon after we received word they had a attorney and wanted to know our insurance max. Their attorney was able to find that out and wanted a million dollars from our insurance and if they didn't agree they would go after us personally too. This is where the story changes. The statement read our dog was placed into a room with their daughter were she immediately viciously attacked her. That she has suffered physical pain and suffering, has ptsd, nightmares and on and on. A million dollars. Well I have 3 outside of myself and husband who were right there who will give statements of the actual facts. I have pictures from many different situations that she has not been hindered in what she does, you can't even tell there was anything wrong. I have documentation of them finding a stray pitbull in the riverbed they wanted to keep. Their daughter has ptsd and is scared of dogs? They currently have a stray Shepard her grandmother found tied to a tree and their own dog who was sent to training as it bite their neighbor. I could go on and on but you get my point. So then we hear nothing for almost a year. Thinking maybe they thought better. But then the clincher is as the mother stood across the street allowed her daughter who was with my granddaughter come into our home on Halloween knowing we had the same dog and dogs here. She wasnt scared or bothered at all. Then just recently we were served for a law suit. The lies have gotten worse. Now we allowed our dog who had prior aggressive attacks be around their child. That our dog has attacked other dogs and on and on. All not truthful at all. I have never in all my years have a dog bite, aggression, attack or anything of the sort. I am appalled that an attorney wouldn't check the facts before making defamatory statements. This now has started to cause even more personal problems as our insurance, could cause issues for our housing and our foster care. We had no problem having our homeowners take care of it as thats why we have it. Someone can trip over their own shoelaces and get hurt. But to turn this into all about a paycheck and all lies. I want to know if anyone has counter sued for slander and defamatory statements that now are causing us problems? And what about an attorney that puts all these lies out there? Everyone here is just seeing dollar signs. Isn't it insurance fraud in more ways than one? Would love input.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Posts
    1,244

    Default Re: What to Do if Someone is Suing You for a Possible Dog Bite and Story is a Lie

    Paragraphs are your friend.

    Turn everything over to your homeowners or renters insurance and let them handle it.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Location
    47.606 N 122.332 W in body, still at 90 S in my mind.
    Posts
    1,507

    Default Re: What to Do if Someone is Suing You for a Possible Dog Bite and Story is a Lie

    Did you contact your insurance company about this? You may have an issue with timing regarding notification, especially if your insurance provider learns about this from the attorney of the parents.

    Prior history of the dog may not help you. The kid MAY have PTSD and nightmares. All of this MAY stem from your dog regardless of past history which would largely make you responsible and threatens the life of your dog. All of the other extraneous details that your provided are pretty much irrelevant. In the end, your dog injured someone else which makes you responsible for making the other person whole.

    In any event, you really need to contact your insurance company. You should've done that two years ago, If I'm reading that right. Given that the notification wasn't timely, which is unclear from your post, it's possible they will deny the claim given that you've had knowledge of the incident or two years.
    "Where do those stairs go?"
    "They go up!"

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
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    17,513

    Default Re: What to Do if Someone is Suing You for a Possible Dog Bite and Story is a Lie

    I quit reading after the first couple of sentences.

    Turn this over to the insurance company you had when it happened and hope you don't get left out in the cold if you didn't report it when it happened.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2018
    Posts
    1,988

    Default Re: What to Do if Someone is Suing You for a Possible Dog Bite and Story is a Lie

    Not gonna read through that awful block of text.

    Is this in small claims court or the limited or unlimited division of the superior court?

    If it's not in small claims court, turn this matter over to your homeowner's insurance carrier. If it is in small claims court, show up on the scheduled hearing date and tell your story. If you lose, you can appeal, which is essentially a do-over. Note that, you should still notify your insurance carrier about this even if it's in small claims court, but your insurer cannot do anything to defend you in small claims court.

    As for your questions:

    1. "I want to know if anyone has counter sued for slander and defamatory statements that now are causing us problems?" This question makes no sense because it is a general question about a very specific situation. If your intent was to ask whether anyone in the history of the U.S. has ever countersued for allegedly defamatory statements made in the plaintiff's complaint, the answer is yes. However, in 95%+ of those situations, the countersuit failed. Why? Because defamatory statements made in the context of legal proceedings are almost always privileged.

    2. "And what about an attorney that puts all these lies out there?" I have no idea what this question means, but maybe reading section 128.5 of the Code of Civil Procedure will be useful to you.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2020
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: What to Do if Someone is Suing You for a Possible Dog Bite and Story is a Lie

    Thank you everyone for you reply's. Sorry for the long, non-paragraphed statement. It was late and I'm very upset. I'm sure this was all impossible to understand but that's for the input.
    Our homeowners has been involved since the beginning of this.
    Thank you
    If there is a way to delete this horrible long statement please let me know how.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Location
    47.606 N 122.332 W in body, still at 90 S in my mind.
    Posts
    1,507

    Default Re: What to Do if Someone is Suing You for a Possible Dog Bite and Story is a Lie

    There is no way to delete it.

    If your Homeowner's carrier has been involved since the beginning then let them handle it, it's why you pay that bill. That and don't discuss it, ever, with the other party, now that you're at this stage.
    "Where do those stairs go?"
    "They go up!"

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2020
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: What to Do if Someone is Suing You for a Possible Dog Bite and Story is a Lie

    Thank you

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    3,655

    Default Re: What to Do if Someone is Suing You for a Possible Dog Bite and Story is a Lie

    Prior to the lawsuit, you should have paid 100% of the child's medical bills, medical supply's, medications and any-other things that were needed for the child's treatment and recovery. You don't get to split the cost with the other party as you are responsible for your animals actions.

    You shouldn't have to pay for any tolls, fuel used in a vehicle to get the child to and from those doctor visits, food and beverages while at the doctor visits or any lost wages to the parents from missing work.

    But being that there is now a lawsuit, you shouldn't have to pay anything out of pocket. If they hand you any receipt's, or ask for any money, hand it over to your insurance carrier for payment.
    I'm not a lawyer, but I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night.......

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2019
    Posts
    156

    Default Re: What to Do if Someone is Suing You for a Possible Dog Bite and Story is a Lie

    Quote Quoting Who'sThatGuy
    View Post
    Prior to the lawsuit, you should have paid 100% of the child's medical bills, medical supply's, medications and any-other things that were needed for the child's treatment and recovery. You don't get to split the cost with the other party as you are responsible for your animals actions.

    You shouldn't have to pay for any tolls, fuel used in a vehicle to get the child to and from those doctor visits, food and beverages while at the doctor visits or any lost wages to the parents from missing work.

    But being that there is now a lawsuit, you shouldn't have to pay anything out of pocket. If they hand you any receipt's, or ask for any money, hand it over to your insurance carrier for payment.
    It isn't up to the dog owner to pay anything, back when the accident happened and especially not now. If his insurance company doesn't want to pay, or even make a reasonable offer, then nothing happens and a lawsuit is filed to persuade them to pay. If the victim wants $300K then they sue for $1M. It is how the insurance companies like to play the game. If the insurance company wants to pay $300K, then they will offer $40K.

    If the OP thinks the other attorney is making up lies, wait until the insurance company's attorneys gets involved. They will lie to defend their client just as much...inferring that the victim wanted to get bitten, poked the dog's eyes, grabbed its tail, hates dogs, showed fear, abused the puppies, faked the injury, wanted the injury, likes facial scars, etc.

    Also, if the IRS views travel time to and from a doctor or pharmacy as a legitimate expense, surely a lawsuit and jury will too. The insurance co is lucky they didn't hire a nanny and a limousine service.

    Perception is everything. If the dog bit a homeless person it wouldn't be a case. But since it bit a child...it is HUGE and that insurance company is going to pay irrespective of the lies that lead up to it. So buckle up OP, you are entering the land of lies...from both sides.

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