I was injured in a hunting accident in West Virginia that occurred off-season. Can I still collect damages?
Miley Legal Group
In most cases of a hunting accident, whether it occurred in or out of season, you most likely will be able to collect damages against the negligent hunter. Just because it was not hunting season does not mean that you do not have the right to expect safety on hunting grounds.
However, considering the situation, a personal injury lawyer may be needed for help in proving your case.
In addition to facing a personal injury lawsuit, a person who is violating the laws of the state in regard to acceptable dates and times for hunting, could also face charges that carry jail time and expensive fines:
- criminal negligence;
- unintentional assault; and
- negligent homicide.
In these types of cases, typically the shooter will always be held liable for the injury or death of a victim. If you will be out hunting or visiting an area where hunting takes place (in or out of season) you can prevent a hunting accident by adhering to these safety guidelines:
- do not go alone – it is always safer to hunt and be in the outdoors with another person or group;
- wear safety gear – make sure that you are visible to other hunters in the area and that they can distinguish you from an animal or other target;
- identify your target – If you are the one using a gun, be sure you are indeed shooting game and not a person; and
- practice gun safety – always treat your gun as if it were loaded. Do not leave it unattended when out hunting, do not point it at others and keep your finger off the trigger until it is time to shoot.