Q: Hello - State of CT. in 2013 my dog purportedly bit someone. Victim in 2016 filing a claim - statute of limitations?
The person did file a claim in 2014 against my then husband - he never appeared in court. This week my daughter was served papers - saying she was the owner or keeper of the dog. She did not provide housing or food for dog. She was home from college during the summer and is the one that answered the door when animal control arrived. At that moment, the person did not identify and confirm it was the dog - she said it was not... and then later told the animal control person it was the dog yet she was afraid to say so in front of my daughter. Can she, now 3 years later, file a lawsuit against my daughter or has the statute of limitations kicked in? Can she even file the same claim against a different family member since a claim was filed against her father? Note: husband and I were divorced in 2015. Thank you hopefully I'm communicating clearly.
A: Two year statute of limitations. She is covered by your homeowners at the time. She needs to talk to a) the insurance company b) the lawyer who the insurance hired to represent your husband. The dog statute makes the owner liable. She wouldn't be liable anyway, though if she was dogsitting they could name her.
The statute of limitations for dog bite lawsuits in Connecticut is the same as the one that applies to most claims filed over personal injury (where the potential defendant’s negligence or other wrongdoing caused the plaintiff’s injuries and other losses.) Specifically, General Statutes of Connecticut section 52-584 says, “No action to recover damages for injury to the person, or to real or personal property, caused by negligence, or by reckless or wanton misconduct…
shall be brought but within two years from the date when the injury is first sustained.”
In plain English, and in the context of a dog bite or other injury caused by a dog, you need to get your lawsuit filed against the dog’s owner within two years, and the “clock” starts running on the day the injury occurs.
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