Monday, August 28, 2023

Plaintiff Granted Leave to Amend To Try To Plead Punitive Damages in a Dog Bite Case

In the case of Jennings v. Lycoming County SPCA, No. CV23-00512 (C.P. Lyc. Co. July 20, 2023 Carlucci, J.), the court struck a Plaintiff’s claim for punitive damages in a dog bite but allowed the Plaintiff the right to amend.

According to the Opinion, the Plaintiff was in the lobby of a local SPCA when she was allegedly attacked by a Terrier named “Peanut.” 

The Plaintiff alleged that the dog had been previously adopted by a family, but returned to the SPCA, after biting a child in that family. The Plaintiff also alleged that the dog previously bit a SPCA employee and that, therefore, the SPCA had actual knowledge that the dog was dangerous.

In his Opinion, Judge Carlucci noted that he was not satisfied that the facts alleged in the Plaintiff's Amended Complaint were sufficient to show that the Defendant's conduct demonstrated a reckless indifference to the interests of others.  However, as noted, the Court granted the Plaintiff leave to try again in another Amended Complaint.    

Anyone wishing to review a copy of this decision may click this LINK.

Source: “Digest of Recent Opinions.” Pennsylvania Law Weekly (Aug. 15, 2023).

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