Michigan Dog Bites

Think you have a Dog Bite Claim?  Contact our office for a free no obligation cunsultation.  Phones are answered 24 hours a day.  Talk to a lawyer right now!  1-877-4-BARRIX(1-877-422-7749).

Michigan's Dog Bite Law

Michigan's Dog Bite Law is considered a strict liability law.  This means a person who's dog bites a person is liable for the injuries, medical bills and pain and suffering that dog causes.  The only thing that a person needs to prove is that :

  1. The Defendant was the owner of the dog.
  2. That the dog bit the Plaintiff.
  3. Damages or the value of the bite.

Once these elements are proven the owner of the dog, usually their homeowners insurance, will be liable to pay for the damages.  Often these damages can be significant in the form of medical bills, permanent scarring, psychological trauma, future medical bills, risks of infection and nerve damage that may last far into the future.

Dog Bite Facts

Thousands of persons are bitten by dogs each year.  Often these dog bites occur to children or delivery persons (ie; postal employees, newspaper delivery).  Often times the dogs responsible for these injuries are small family dogs who are very territorial in nature.  Other times these bites are from dogs who have a reputation for viciousness.

Michigan's Dog Bite law does not require prior knowledge of viciousness.  The Dog Bite law does away with the old common law "one free bite rule".  The Michigan legislature recognized that dog owners must be responsible to protect the community and children from their pets.  Each year of approximately 800,000 people receiving medical treatment from dog bites, half are children.  Vicous dog attacks scar, injure and even kill  thousands each year.

Dog Bite Defenses

There are very few defenses to a dog bite for a home owner.  The only defenses the Michigan Dog Bite Law recognize is Provcation and Trespass.  Often an insurance company will try to assert one of these two defenses.  However, what the insurance adjuster states as trespass or provocation is not always consistent with the law.  That is why it is important that you contact our office and know your legal rights.

Michigan Statute of Limitations

Michigan law allows a person who has been bitten by a dog up to three years from the date of the bite or incident to file a claim.  There are exceptions such as if the person is a minor under the age of 18.  If the person is a minor at the time of the incident then they have until their 19th birthday to file a claim.  If you or you child has been bitten by a dog you should contact our office immediately.  It is important to preserve the evidence for your claim.  Immediately contact our office and record the event through animal control, the police, or your physician.

Value of your Dog Bite Case

While each case is different and determining the value of  your case is a difficult process we believe that all dog bite cases have value.  The only question based on the strict liabilty nature of Michigan's statute is what are the damages and what is the value of your case.  Many times it is important to wait and see how the scarring and injuries heal to determine  the appropriate value, other thimes it is better to proceed immediately.  The Barrix Law Firm has successfully represented dog bite victims throughout Michigan.  While insurance companies look for reasons to devalue your claim we fight to increase the value, often getting 2-5 times the insurance companies original offer to settle.

A Lawyer Fighting For you

Unlike many Law Firms we handle your claim  for you.  We don't refer the claim to another lawyer and were right here in your community.  We are not afraid to file suit and fight for you in Court if the insurance company does not meet their responsibilty.  Contact our office and we'll fight for you too.

What to do if bitten by a dog

  • If possible thoroughly clean the wound with soap and water.
  • Contact your doctor or go to the emergency room or medical center.
  • Call an amublance if necessary.
  • Report the bite to the local animal control or police department.  Be sure to clearly identify the dog by size, color, breed, id tags, collar color, unusual characteristics, the owners name and address if known, if the dog is a stray or constantly loose, what direction the dog went and if the dog has a history of running loose or biting.
  • DO NOT talk with an insurance adjuster until you contact our office!
  • Take photos or video tape of the bite and the healing process.  Ask the hospital to take pictures.
  • Keep a record of all medical expenses, doctors, hospitals, prescriptions and keep all appointments.
  • Do Not discuss a potential lawsuit with anyone including doctors and nurses.
  • Contact our office by email or 24 hour phone 1-877-4-BARRIX (1-877-422-7749)

How to Avoid a dog bite

Some ways to avoid a dog bite

  • If confronted by a dog that wants to sniff you, stand still, don't make sudden movements.  The dog may move away if it feels you are not a threat.  Never interfere with a dog that is caring for puppies.  They will be protective by nature even if the dog knows you.
  • Do not approach a dog that is eating or chewing on a bone.
  • Avoid direct eye contact or staring at a dog. If you think that a dog may attack stand still.  Do not run and if the dog loses interest back away slowly.  Do not turn your back on a dog.
  • Watch children around all dogs.  Even family pets, teach your child to never put thier face next to a dogs for any reason.  Dogs may not realize that the child wants a kiss!
  • If you are attacked put something between you and the dog (ie; purse, coat, chair, stick)
  • If knocked to the ground cover your face with your hands and make a tight ball.
  • Use common sense.  If you are at someones home and you see a dog remain in the car until the owner takes control of the animal.

Helping children avoid Dog Bites

  • Teach your children how to safely interact with animals and when not to interact with them.
  • Do not leave children alone with dogs.
  • Teach Children not to approach a growling or barking dog.
  • Do not discipline a dog by hitting it.
  • Teach children not to poke, tease or provoke a dog.
  • Teach children to avoid all dogs that they are not accustomed to or familiar with.
  • Teach children to never take a toy or food from a dog.
  • Teach your children that even a dog wagging his tail may be dangerous.
  • If a dog is loose in the area tell the children they should slowly come inside while you call animal control.

Why the Law office of Jason Barrix


The Law Office of Jason Barrix has the experience you need to fight the insurance companies to get the maximum compensation the law says that you are entitled to.


We aggressively fight for our clients from the first appointment until the case is resolved. 


Our  phones are anwered 24 hours a day, every day of the year.  We will come to your home or the hospital for your convienence.  Our office will assist you in every step of your case and fight for you. Remember. . .

 "There is Never a Fee Unless We get Money for YOU!"