What to do if while my dog was tied out on my property she killed the neighbor’s free range chicken?

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What to do if while my dog was tied out on my property she killed the neighbor’s free range chicken?

What am I responsible for since it happened on my property?

Asked on May 30, 2012 under Bankruptcy Law, New York

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

You would not be responsible if your dog was tied/restrained on your property. Liability, or the legal obligation to pay money, generally depends on fault; fault depends on either an intentional bad act or negligence, which is unreasonable carelessness; however, if your dog was tied up on your own property, you were neither careless nor intentionally doing anything wrong--hence, you should not be liable.

That's not to say that it might not be the better choice to pay for the chicken, if that costs less than "bad blood" between you a neighbor, but that's your choice; based on what you write, you appear to not be legally liable for the loss.


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