Thursday, May 23, 2013

Coogle v. Jahangard case brief

Coogle v. Jahangard case brief
271 Ga.App. 235

CASE SYNOPSIS: Plaintiff mother, on behalf of herself and her minor child, sued defendants, a dog's previous owners, seeking damages in connection with a dog bite. The Georgia trial court granted the previous owners' motion for summary judgment. The mother appealed.

FACTS: The mother argued that the previous owners were liable because they gave the dog to its current owner knowing it had bitten someone before, but failed to inform him of this. The appellate court noted that the mother pointed to no law placing a duty upon a dog owner to warn a person to whom he gave a dog of a prior biting incident, and had not cited any authority holding that a former dog owner was liable to a third party for failing to warn a new owner of a prior biting incident. Further, she could not show that the previous owners’ alleged failure to warn caused the injury; although the subsequent owner claimed he would not have taken the dog had he known the dog had bitten before, he kept it and allowed the child to play with it even after the dog nipped at another child. As the mother never alleged a cause of action under the dog bite statute, O.C.G.A. § 51-2-7, or that the previous owners still owned the dog at the time of the incident, she could not claim that genuine issues of material fact existed concerning their liability under § 51-2-7. She could not change her entire theory of recovery on appeal in an effort to survive a motion for summary judgment.

CONCLUSION: The judgment was affirmed.

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