How Do Local Leash Laws Affect Georgia Dog Bite Cases?

Leash laws tell dog owners when they must keep their dog leashed or locked up. Local leash laws can affect your dog bite case by helping you prove negligence.

What Are Georgia’s Leash Laws?

Most counties and cities in Georgia have local ordinances preventing dogs from roaming free. Atlanta’s leash law holds that dogs cannot leave the “premises of the owner” unless they are attached to a leash that is no more than six feet long.

What Affect Does a Leash Law Have on a Dog Bite Case?

You have two options to prove liability in a dog bite case:

  • The owner knew the dog was “vicious” or “dangerous” and the owner allowed the dog to roam free and you did not provoke the dog; or
  • The owner violated a leash law.

Proving a dog is vicious or dangerous requires knowledge of a previous attack or act of aggression. If the dog was running loose at the time of the attack, it may be easier to prove your case.

For example, if you were visiting your friend’s house and his dog attacked you, you would need to prove the owner knew the dog was vicious or dangerous to recover injury compensation. To establish dangerous or viciousness, you would need to prove the dog had previously bitten someone or had acted aggressively toward a person or pet. If the dog had no history of aggression, you cannot hold the owner liable.

However, say you were walking down the street when an unleashed dog attacked you. If you can prove the dog belonged to someone who failed to keep the dog under control, you can hold the owner liable for any injuries you sustained in the attack.

What If the Dog Escaped Its Confines?

Under state dog bite laws, a dog owner must always keep his or her dog locked in, leashed, or with someone who can control it. When the owner leaves his or her dog unsupervised, it must not be able to escape the property.

For example, if an owner leaves his dog outside in a fenced yard during the day, the owner may still be liable if the dog is able to escape and injure someone. If the dog had previously escaped the yard, we can use that to prove the owner’s negligence.

Free Consultation on Your Case

Proving an owner’s leash law violation led to your dog attack can be complicated. An Atlanta dog bite lawyer knows what evidence you might need to gather and how to deal with insurance companies who might be trying to devalue your claim. Call the Law Office of Jason R. Schultz, P.C. today at 404-474-0804. Under Georgia law, you only have two years after the dog bites to file a lawsuit so do not wait.