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If My Pet Died During an Accident Can It Qualify As a Wrongful Death?

Pet ownership is important to many families in Clark County and throughout the state of Nevada. According to a recent survey conducted by the Center for Research and Design Analysis (CRDA), approximately 65 percent of Nevada households own either a cat or a dog. For pet owners, their little furry friend quickly becomes a member of the family. In the unfortunate event that something happens to your pet, it can be truly devastating. If your pet has been injured in an accident in Nevada, it is important that you have a full understanding of your legal rights and options. The following is a list of three of the most common questions we get about pet accidents and deaths caused by negligence.

Do I Have any Rights Under the Nevada Wrongful Death Statute?

Unfortunately, Nevada’s wrongful death law applies only to humans. Therefore, there are no options available under this specific statute. However, that does not mean that you are without legal rights. Nevada has an alternative law which does provide some (more limited) legal rights for pet owners whose animals have died in an accident.

What Compensation is Available for Pet Deaths in Nevada?

Under NRS 41.740, a Nevada pet owner can seek legal compensation if their animal has been killed due to the negligent actions of another party. Unfortunately, the damages available are far more restricted than the damages available under the traditional wrongful death statute. A pet owner may be able to seek compensation for any economic losses associated with the loss of the pet. This includes the market value of the pet as well as any veterinary bills and reasonable burial expenses. However, it should be noted that this statute caps damages at $5,000 per each claim.

How Can I Keep My Pet Safe in the Car?

Automobiles can be particularly dangerous and stressful for pets. It is critical that pet owners take proactive steps to ensure the safety of their animal while they are travelling. Please consider the following three key car safety tips for your pet:

  • Always keep a close eye on your pet when loading and unloading the vehicle. Some animals are highly stressed by the prospect of vehicle travel and will attempt to run away and hide. This could lead to your animal getting lost or running into traffic.
  • Be ready for the conditions inside of the car. Your pet will need plenty of water and must be able to take frequent breaks to use the bathroom and to walk around.
  • Never let your pet roam around your vehicle while it is moving. Similar to a young child, your pet needs to be properly secured. You never know when an accident might occur and an unrestrained animal is placed at an extremely high risk.

Contact Our Las Vegas Office Today

At the Ladah Law Firm, our Las Vegas personal injury lawyers have extensive experience handling a wide variety of accident claims. If a loved one of yours was injured or killed in an accident, please contact our team today to request your free initial legal consultation. We may be able to help. We serve accident victims throughout the region, including in Henderson and Boulder City.