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When an Animal is Hit

When an Animal is Hit: When a domesticated animal is injured and/or damage occurs to the driver, there may be a presumption of fault on the part of the animal’s owner for allowing the animal to run at large. If the accident was caused by driver negligence, the animal owner may file suit against the driver. Most states limit damages to the value of the animal or its medical care, and do not permit non-economic damages such as emotional damages associated with the loss of a pet. However, this is a rapidly developing area of law. Injury or damage to the driver’s vehicle caused by collision with wild animals (e.g., deer) is generally covered without assignment of fault. The driver should render assistance to the animal only if the driver will not further endanger himself or other motorists.

Inside When an Animal is Hit