Our neighbors pony got out of his lot and went into my parents yard. They pony was wild and kept kicking at my parents dogs which are tied. At one point It did kick one of the dogs full force. My husband recently had carpal tunnel release surgery on his hand but was helping in the process of trying to get the horse off of my parents property for fear it would kill one of the dogs. We first tried to contact the neighbors to get then to remove the animal from the property but they were not home. While chasing the horse my husband fell hard and it caused his incision to rip open which will mean unnecessary medical bills and a longer healing process. Who is responsible for the expense? Thanks so much for taking time to address my question.
The answer to this question is state specific. You need to consult with a lawyer in Virginia to see what rights your husband may have. Some states, for example, do not allow you to sue if you have contributed in any way to your own injuries while other states have a system that allows comparative liability, and others do not allow good Samaritans the right to recover for injuries they sustain for actions they initiate. A lawyer who handles personal injuries in VA will be able to tell you and they normally offer free consults in this area.
I would reach out to a personal injury lawyer and determine whether you have a case or not.
Before I respond to your inquiry, I must state that we have not spoken, I have not reviewed the relevant documents and facts, and I do not represent you. Therefore, my discussion below is not a legal opinion, but is informational only. Finally, my discussion applies only to issues to which Pennsylvania, Delaware, New Jersey or Federal law applies, unless otherwise specified.
That being said, this is a personal injury question, not a health law question. I will change the practice area of your question to get the attention of the right Avvo attorneys. It sounds like your husband should consult directly with a VA personal injury lawyer, ASAP.
/Christopher E. Ezold/
I am an attorney licensed in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and the States of Delaware and New Jersey. My practice includes employment, business and health care law. Before I respond to your inquiry, I must state that we have not spoken, I have not reviewed the relevant documents and facts, and I do not represent you. Therefore, my discussion below is not a legal opinion, but is informational only. Finally, my discussion applies only to issues to which Pennsylvania, Delaware, New Jersey or Federal law applies.
I am sorry about the injuries. You and your husband are to be applauded for trying to protect your dogs, as well as protecting the pony from harm. Had the pony made it to the street, a car could have hit it and injuries to occupants could have occurred. There is a possibility you have a case. If the neighbor was negligent by allowing the pony to escape, you may be able to make a case. Before you speak to anyone about this matter, you need to obtain a free consultation with an AVVO.com injury attorney near you.
NOT LEGAL ADVICE. FOR EDUCATION AND INFORMATION ONLY. DO NOT RELY ON ANY ADVICE YOU RECEIVE FROM ME OR ANY OTHER ATTORNEY IN THIS FORUM. Legal advice comes after a complete review of the facts and relevant documents and an expressed (written) agreement of representation that forms attorney-client confidentiality. Neither of these two events can occur in this forum. Mr. Tackett is licensed to practice in the Commonwealth of Virginia and the State of Ohio. His answers to any Avvo question are rooted in general legal principles--NOT your specific state laws. There is no implied or actual attorney-client relationship arising from this education exchange. You should speak with an attorney licensed in your state, to whom you have provided all the facts before you take steps that may impact your legal rights. Mr. Tackett is under no obligation to answer subsequent emails or phone calls related to this or any other matter.
The neighbors had a duty to keep their pony on their property. Because of the pony coming onto your parents' yard, it was foreseeable that your parents and/or their son-in-law/your husband would take steps to return the pony to the neighbors's property and, it was also foreseeable that your husband would be injured while attempting to return the pony to the neighbors's property. As such, in that the neighbors breached their duty to keep the pony on their property and the injury to your husband was directly and proximately caused by the neighbors's breach of that duty, the neighbors should be held liable for any increased medical bills and any increased non-economic damages, e.g., pain & suffering, mental anguish, inconvenience, disability and/or impairment and loss of the ability to enjoy life's pleasures resulting from your husband's injury.
NOTE: The neighbors's homeowner's insurance policy may provide coverage for the injury and resulting economic (increased medical expenses) and non-economic damages (as listed above), suffered by your husband ... although some homeowner's insurance policy have a coverage exclusion for "animal liability" injuries. Also, if you are interested in pursuing a claim for damages against the neighbors, you may want to seek out a personal injury attorney with who also has a background in equine law.
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