September 22, 2016
If your dog bites someone, are you automatically liable for the resulting injuries? Yes, according to Kentucky's dog bite statute, which says that any "owner whose dog is found to have caused damage to a person, livestock, or other property shall be responsible for that damage." KRS 258.235(4). But a Kentucky Court of Appeals opinion issued last week says that it is not that simple. Maupin v. Tankersely, 2015-CA-1259. The Court of Appeals declined to impose strict liability, and instead held that the "proper inquiry" is whether the dog owner "had reason to anticipate the plaintiff's presence" or whether the dog owner "failed to exercise ordinary care in controlling the dogs for the safety of others."