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Steven M. Bialick
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MOTORCYCLE VS. COW. WHO WINS IN COURT?

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Imagine riding your motorcycle down a rural road on a beautiful summer day.  Life is good, until you round a curve and run smack into cows on the road.

 

The owner of those cows might be liable for any injuries or other damages you suffer.  In fact, in some states, the owner might be liable for three times (treble) the damages you sustain.

 

For example, Minnesota Statutes section 346.16 provides that “Any person who shall knowingly permit the running at large of any such domestic animal shall be liable to the person aggrieved for treble damages sustained by the aggrieved person, to be recovered in a civil action brought for that purpose.”

 

In the case of Peterson v. Pawelk, 263 N.W.2d 634 (Minn. 1978), the Minnesota Supreme Court stated that, for Minnesota Statutes section 346.16 to apply, it is not necessary that the owner has knowledge that his animal is running at large, but he must in some way have allowed it to do so.

 

Steven M. Bialick has been in the private practice of law since 1980.  He practices in the areas of accident and personal injury law.  This article is intended to provide general information only, and is not legal advice or a legal opinion on any certain facts or circumstances.  Readers are encouraged to consult with an attorney on any specific legal questions or matters.

 

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