Answered on Jan 30th, 2012 at 4:57 PM
The answer to your initial Question is "yes" a person can sue a dog owner if his or her dog causes injuries. Without knowing what city you are referring to I cannot answer whether any municipal code section may apply to unleashed dogs in public hallways in apartment buildings. However, Nebraska does have a statute, 54-601, that makes a dog owner "strictly liable" to someone injured by his or her dog. The dog need not bite someone; the dog's owner is responsible if the dog kills, wounds, injures, worries or chases someone and causes injury. "Strict liability" basically means that unless an exception applies, the dog owner is responsible for injuries caused by his or her dog, even if it the first time the dog did what it did to cause the injury. The main exceptions are to a dog owner's liability are: trespassing; intentionally provoking the dog; or merely playful acts of dogs. From you're the information provided, it does not appear that any of these exceptions apply. The victim can sue the dog owner for her injuries, medical expenses, pain, suffering as well as some other items as well. As to your last question, "What are the chances of the victim getting compensated?" this is difficult to answer with the information provided. It appears that the victim has a good chance of receiving compensation. However, there is additional information that could change her "chances."