Cat bites could be dangerous, both to humans and other animals. Bacteria from the cat’s mouth could lead to serious infection and expensive treatments. Liability for pet attacks depends upon several factors such as the type of the animal involved, the place where the attack occurred and many other elements.
There are states such as California that follows “strict liability”. This means that an owner is liable for anyone bitten by their pet whether or not they knew or should have known that the animal was dangerous. The owner is held liable, regardless if they’ve done anything to prevent the incident In other states, the owner is liable only if they have prior knowledge that the animal might bite, but didn’t take necessary precautions based on that knowledge.
Many states have enacted statutes of strict liability for animal bites. Generally, here are some aspects you may want to consider before filing the suit:
1. The incident took place in your neighbor’s private property
2. The cat’s owner and your neighbor are the same people,
3. You didn’t provoke the cat
4. The cat bite resulted in severe injuries (physical and/or emotional) that needed appropriate professional medical care
5. The owner was negligent and did not take the necessary actions to prevent the harm.
It would be in your best interest to first contact a personal injury lawyer and share the details of the incident.