Liability against Livestock Owners, Generally

If your collision involved a wild animal, such as a deer or coyote, you may be out of luck because there likely are no potential defendants from whom to seek recovery for your damages.

Livestock is a broad term referring to any breed of animal kept by humans for commercial purposes.  Most livestock accidents in the country involve cattle, goats, horses, donkeys, llama’s, pigs and sheep.

In accidents involving domestic livestock, there usually is a potential defendant:  the owner of the animal.  (Assuming they are not all the same person, other potential defendants include the land owner, the person responsible for taking care of the animal, and the person who installed and maintained any fences.  In this website, we’ll discuss all potential defendants collectively as the “livestock owner”.)

Whether the livestock owner is responsible for your injuries is a question of liability that must always be explored after a livestock accident.  Ultimately, the liability against any livestock owner for a livestock accident will depend on numerous factors, including:

  • what state you live in;
  • what statutes and ordinances have been enacted in your area; and
  • the specific facts of your case.