South Carolina's Dog Bite Law

Dogs have been man’s best friend for a very long time, but unfortunately man’s love affair with domesticating animals can lead to preventable attacks and injuries. As a general rule, dogs can be great companions, wonderful protectors, and amazing friends. But unfortunately, a lack of affection and socialization, a naturally bad temperament, or even abuse at the hands of their owners can cause dogs to be a danger to people and animals in their surroundings.

If someone is attacked by a dangerous dog in South Carolina, he or she has three years from the date of the attack to file a personal injury lawsuit. This deadline is known as the “statute of limitations,” and it applies to all personal injury claims in the state. If you were bitten by a dog and you filed a claim after the statute of limitations expired, the court would automatically reject your case.

What the Law Says About Dog Bites

Dog bites are covered under Section 47-3-110 of the South Carolina Code of Laws. Under Section 47-3-110(A), it says, “If a person is bitten or otherwise attacked by a dog while the person is in a public place or is lawfully in a private place, including the property of the dog owner or person having the dog in the person’s care or keeping, the dog owner or person having the dog in the person’s care or keeping is liable for the damages suffered by the person bitten or otherwise attacked.”

Section 47-3-110(A) applies to dog bite victims who are lawfully in a public or private place. In other words, this law protects victims who were on public or private property because the property owner or lawful resident of the property invited them, or the invitation was express or implied.

This section does NOT apply to the following:

  • Individuals who provoked the dog, which caused the attack.
  • People who were attacked by a K9 who was working in the capacity of law enforcement.
  • Individuals attacked as a direct result of a command by certified canine officer.

Suppose you were not attacked by a dog, but you’re concerned about how South Carolina’s dog bite laws might apply to your pet. If that’s the case, we recommend reading, “Is Your Dog a Good Citizen? You’d Better Hop So, for Insurance’s Sake” by the American Kennel Club. The AKC’s website is a great resource for dog owners looking to properly train their pets so they are well-behaved and don’t pose threats to people.

Looking to file a dog bite claim in Columbia, SC? Contact our firm today!

Internet Marketing Experts The information on this website is for general information purposes only. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship.