What if my pet is injured or dies in a crash?

Transcript: Hi I’m personal injury attorney David Holub.

This video discusses the subject of your pet being injured or killed during an auto crash, or in any other circumstance.

Pets are often treated as members of the family and sometimes they’re in the car with us at a time when there’s a crash, and they can become injured or killed in the crash. To many people, their pet is invaluable. It provides companionship, security, and love. Indiana courts have noted that though pets may be beloved by their owners, they remain personal property in the eyes of the law. It may seem uncaring, but the courts generally disallow placing any sentimental or emotional value on the loss of a pet, and again restrict your compensation to what the property value of the animal might be proven to be. If pets are injured, the medical bills that are incurred trying to get the animal healed can be recoverable as an element of damage.

If a pet perishes in a collision, its value is its fair market value.
Fair market value at the time of a pet loss is often not much money. However, if your pet is a work animal or a show breed, highly trained and highly prized, and perhaps if it’s a breed animal, it can be of a greater value. There have been situations where we have had, for example, livestock that was being transported and a crash occurred, and a prize breeding ram was killed in that crash. The breeding ram happened to be worth over $100,000 because it had a great value in the sheep production business.

We were able to get compensation for the value of that particular animal. Again, that’s a property value that has nothing to do with emotional or sentimental value, but gives you an example of what type of evidence is required to obtain compensation for the loss of an animal.

This video gives you simply general information on the subject of the loss of a pet or an injury to the pet during a crash. If you have specific questions, please feel free to call one of our attorneys.

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