Personal Injury Cases And Strict Liability
Although most personal injury lawsuits depend on proving negligence, there are certain cases where plaintiffs do not need to show that the defendant was negligent. Strict liability, also called absolute liability, is a legal doctrine that holds a person or entity responsible for a victim’s injuries, even if that party was not negligent or at fault. In cases involving strict liability, defendants can still be held accountable even if they exercised reasonable care.
The most common types of personal injury lawsuits where strict liability may be applied include:
- Product Liability: Designers, manufacturers, and wholesalers can be held strictly liable when their defective, faulty, or substandard product injures a consumer. For absolute liability to apply, the victim’s lawyer must establish that the product’s deficiency was the proximate cause of their injury. This type of claim also requires proof that when the accident occurred, the consumer was using the product as intended. In other words, if the victim misused the product, leading to injury, the defendant might not be held responsible.
- Dog Bites: Under New York law, dog owners can be held strictly liable for medical expenses resulting from a dog bite or attack. Some local ordinances require dogs to be kept on leashes. Failure to do so can also result in strict liability for damages. Additional compensation may be obtained if it can be shown that the canine had vicious or dangerous propensities, which the owner knew about. There are some exceptions for police and service dogs.
- Exotic Animals: It is inherently dangerous to keep certain wild animals, such as giant snakes, tigers, wolf-dog mixes, and alligators. If one of these animals happens to get loose, it can place everyone around in grave danger. Therefore, the owner of an exotic animal can be held strictly liable for any damages caused by the animal, even if they took reasonable measures to secure it. There are special exemptions for zoos and government institutions that house wild animals for education and research.
- Exceptionally Treacherous Activities: Some endeavors, like demolition, disposal of hazardous materials, storing explosives, and oil drilling, are considered unreasonably dangerous. Even when the highest level of care is taken to prevent accidents, these activities pose a significant risk of severely harming others. Consequently, parties engaging in hazardous activities can be held strictly liable for injuries to others.
Call The Dietrich Law Firm P.C.’s Elite Buffalo, New York Strict Liability Lawyers
Claims involving strict liability can be highly complicated, especially if the defendant or their insurance company tries to dispute fault. That is why you need the Dietrich Law Firm P.C.’s highly experienced attorneys to litigate your case aggressively. Jed Dietrich, Esq., famed as a Best of the Best Top Personal Injury Attorney, and his seasoned team promise to do everything in our power to get you the maximum compensation. Don’t hesitate to contact our office at 716-839-3939 or by filling out the online consultation form to schedule your complimentary consultation and case evaluation.