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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 69258
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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I run a pub and a member went upstairs without my permission

Customer Question

I run a pub and a member went upstairs without my permission while I was out opened the kitchen door where my german shepherd was and got bitten. She tells me its my fault for not telling her she could not go upstairs, Is that correct?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.
How long ago was this please?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

this happened on friday last week

Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Would this person normally be allowed upstairs?
If you had found her upstairs would you have objected?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

When we realised that she had gone upstairs we were surprised. We would not expect any of the staff to go upstairs, unless we had specifically asked them to. If we had found her upstairs we would certainly asked what they were doing there, so yes we would have objected

Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
This is nothing to worry about then realistically.
The Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 used to apply only to a public place. This is not a public place. However, in May it was extended out to a private place unless the person who was bitten had entered as a trespasser. From what you have said, she was a trespasser. She had no right to be there. The fact that you didn't expressly tell her that she couldn't go upstairs doesn't give her a right to do so. It begs the question of whether or not if she walked down the street and saw a front door open she would feel entitled to wander in and make herself a cup of tea.
This is just the usual nonsense from those amongst us who are more aware of their rights than their duties.
If this is the first incident then its not enough for action under the Dogs Act 1871 either.
In terms of liability, its very unlikely she would have a big claim either way. Your house insurance will probably cover you for any legal fees so if she gets a no win no fee lawyer to write to you just pass that on to them. If there was no warning that he would do this and no history of aggression then its quite unlikely that this amounts to negligence under the Animals Act 1971.
Can I clarify anything for you?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

the person in question has written a resignation letter and in that letter has insisted that we address issues such as

fullfilling our duty of care to employees,

putting up signage about potentially dangerous dog

ensure dog is muzzled in public areas establishment

never top leave the dog unattended in public areas of establishment

not allowing the dog to roam free in any part of the establishment

obviously with some unmentioned intention to take action should we not comply

Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
I wouldn't know anything about her employment situation. You would have to ask another question about that as thats a different area.
From a dangerous dogs point of view its a nonsense. You can put up signing if you want to. 'Trespassers keep out' would be adequate. A dog that bites trespassers is not really behaving unreasonably. You are not under any obligation to.
You are perfectly entitled to keep your family pet in the private areas of the property and, in fact, in the public areas too unless he actually injures another person or gives reasonable apprehension of doing so.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 69258
Experience: Over 5 years in practice
Jo C. and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
I will see if we have an employment lawyer who can assist.

I think he is offline now but I will email him for you.
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
Hello, my name is Ben and I am an employment lawyer. I would be happy top assist with the employment aspect of this query but as this is a separate query please post it on our website just in the same way as you did with your original one and start it with 'for Ben Jones' - it will then get directed to me and I will be able to provide a response. Thanks

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