If the downstairs tenant’s dog attacked my dog and in the course of the trying to separate the dogs I was bitten, who is liable for my ER bill?

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If the downstairs tenant’s dog attacked my dog and in the course of the trying to separate the dogs I was bitten, who is liable for my ER bill?

I’m renting an apartment. The downstairs tenant’s dog attacked my dog and in the course oftrying to separate them I was bitten. They have paid the vet bill however my ER bills have not been paid yet and they come to $1500. Who is responsible to pay the ER bill?

Asked on January 5, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Massachusetts

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Whose dog bit you? Your dog or the other tenant's? In most states in this country, the owner of a dog that bites a person is strictly liable for all damages caused by his animal. If the neighbor's dog bit you, the neighbor should pay for your medical bills.

If your dog bit you, a good argument could be made that your neighbor should pay for your medical bills because his or her dog started the attack. If your neighbor paid for your dog's vet bills, then such payment is an implied admission of liability and your medical bills should likewise be paid by the neighbor.


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