Hawaii State Service Dog Laws

The portion of Hawaii Law which pertains to service dogs is HI REV ST § 347. Please expand the sections below to read the full text.

As used in this chapter, “service dog” means any dog that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability, including a physical, sensory, intellectual, or other mental disability.  A companion or comfort animal is not a service dog unless it meets the requirements of this definition and it accompanies a person for the purpose of performing the work or tasks for which it has been trained.
(a) Persons who are blind, visually handicapped, or otherwise disabled are entitled to full and equal accommodations, advantages, facilities, and privileges of all common carriers, airplanes, motor vehicles, railroad trains, motor buses, street cars, boats, or any other public conveyances or modes of transportation, hotels, lodging places, places of public accommodation, amusement, or resort, and other places to which the general public is invited, subject only to the conditions and limitations established by law and applicable to all persons.

(b) Every person who is blind, deaf, visually handicapped, or otherwise disabled shall have the right to be accompanied by a service dog, especially trained for the purpose of assisting the person in any of the places listed in subsection (a) without being required to pay an extra charge for the service dog;  provided that the person shall be liable for any damage done to the premises or facilities by the service dog.  No service dog shall be considered dangerous merely because it is unmuzzled.

(c) Every disabled person shall have the right to use a life jacket or other flotation device in a public swimming pool;  provided that:

(1) The person suffers from a physical disability or condition that requires the use of a life jacket or other flotation device;  and

(2) The person obtains a statement signed by a licensed physician, physician assistant, or advanced practice registered nurse attesting to the person’s need to use a life jacket or other flotation device.

(d) The director of human services shall adopt rules pursuant to chapter 91 necessary for the purposes of this section.

Any person injured by a violation of section 347-13 may bring a civil action to recover three times the person’s actual damages or $1,000, whichever sum is greater, for each violation. Any person bringing such an action shall also be entitled to recover the person’s costs together with reasonable attorneys’ fees. An action under this section shall be brought in the circuit court of the district in which the violation is alleged to have occurred.
Any person, business, or agency who violates section 347-13 and any common or public carrier which, and any officer or employee of any common carrier who violates, or causes such carrier to violate, section 347-13 shall be fined not more than $1,000.
Any driver of a vehicle shall, on approaching a person who is blind or visually handicapped, and is carrying or using an exposed cane or walking stick which is painted white in color or painted white tipped with red, or a person who is blind or visually handicapped and using a guide dog, take such reasonable precautions before proceeding as may be necessary to avoid an accident or injury to the blind or visually handicapped person.
A blind or visually handicapped person not carrying a cane or using a service dog in any of the places, accommodations or conveyances listed in section 347-13, shall have all of the rights and privileges conferred by law upon other persons, and the failure of a blind or visually handicapped person to carry a cane or to use a service dog in any such places, accommodations, or conveyances shall not constitute nor be evidence of negligence.
(a) As used in this section “security deposit” means money deposited by or for the tenant with the landlord to be held by the landlord to:

(1) Remedy tenant defaults for accidental or intentional damages resulting from failure to comply with section 521-51, for failure to pay rent due, or for failure to return all keys, including key fobs, parking cards, garage door openers, and mail box keys, furnished by the landlord at the termination of the rental agreement;

(2) Clean the dwelling unit or have it cleaned at the termination of the rental agreement so as to place the condition of the dwelling unit in as fit a condition as that which the tenant entered into possession of the dwelling unit;

(3) Compensate for damages caused by a tenant who wrongfully quits the dwelling unit;

(4) Compensate for damages under subsection (b) caused by any pet animal allowed to reside in the premises pursuant to the rental agreement;  and

(5) Compensate the landlord for moneys owed by the tenant under the rental agreement for utility service provided by the landlord but not included in the rent.

(b) The landlord may require, as a condition of a rental agreement, a security deposit to be paid by or for the tenant for the items in subsection (a) and no others in an amount not in excess of a sum equal to one month’s rent, plus an amount agreed upon by the landlord and tenant to compensate the landlord for any damages caused by any pet animal allowed to reside in the premises pursuant to the rental agreement;  provided that the additional security deposit amount for a pet animal under this subsection:

(1) Shall not be required:

(A) From any tenant who does not have a pet animal that resides in the premises;  or

(B) For an assistance animal that is a reasonable accommodation for a tenant with a disability pursuant to section 515-3;  and

(2) Shall be in an amount not in excess of a sum equal to one month’s rent.

The landlord may not require or receive from or on behalf of a tenant at the beginning of a rental agreement any money other than the money for the first month’s rent and a security deposit as provided in this section.  No part of the security deposit shall be construed as payment of the last month’s rent by the tenant, unless mutually agreed upon, in writing, by the landlord and tenant if the tenant gives forty-five days’ notice of vacating the premises;  in entering such agreement, the landlord shall not be deemed to have waived the right to pursue legal remedies against the tenant for any damages the tenant causes.  Any such security deposit shall be held by the landlord for the tenant and the claim of the tenant to the security deposit shall be prior to the claim of any creditor of the landlord, including a trustee in bankruptcy, even if the security deposits are commingled.

(c) At the termination of a rental agreement in which the landlord required and received a security deposit if the landlord proposes to retain any amount of the security deposit for any of the purposes specified in subsection (a), the landlord shall so notify the tenant, in writing, unless the tenant had wrongfully quit the dwelling unit, together with the particulars of and grounds for the retention, including written evidence of the costs of remedying tenant defaults, such as estimates or invoices for material and services or of the costs of cleaning, such as receipts for supplies and equipment or charges for cleaning services. The security deposit, or the portion of the security deposit remaining after the landlord has claimed and retained amounts authorized under this section, if any, shall be returned to the tenant not later than fourteen days after the termination of the rental agreement. If the landlord does not furnish the tenant with the written notice and other information required by this subsection, within fourteen days after the termination of the rental agreement, the landlord shall not be entitled to retain the security deposit or any part of it, and the landlord shall return the entire amount of the security deposit to the tenant. A return of the security deposit or the furnishing of the written notice and other required information in compliance with the requirements of this subsection shall be presumptively proven if mailed to the tenant, at an address supplied to the landlord by the tenant, with acceptable proof of mailing and postmarked before midnight of the fourteenth day after the date of the termination of the rental agreement or if there is an acknowledgment by the tenant of receipt within the fourteen-day limit. All actions for the recovery of a landlord’s complete or partial retention of the security deposit shall be instituted not later than one year after termination of the rental agreement.

(d) For the purposes of this section if a tenant is absent from the dwelling unit for a continuous period of twenty days or more without written notice to the landlord the tenant shall be deemed to have wrongfully quit the dwelling unit; provided that the tenant shall not be considered to be absent from the dwelling unit without notice to the landlord during any period for which the landlord has received payment of rent. In addition to any other right or remedy the landlord has with respect to such a tenant the landlord may retain the entire amount of any security deposit the landlord has received from or on behalf of such tenant.

(e) The landlord shall not require the delivery of any postdated check or other negotiable instrument to be used for payment of rent.

(f) If the landlord who required and received a security deposit transfers the landlord’s interest in the dwelling unit, whether by sale, assignment, death, appointment of a receiver, or otherwise, the landlord’s successor in interest is bound by this section. The original landlord shall provide an accounting of the security deposits received for each dwelling unit to the landlord’s successor at or before the time of the transfer of the landlord’s interest; within twenty days thereafter the landlord’s successor shall give written notice to each tenant of the amount of the security deposit credited to the tenant. In the event the landlord’s successor fails to satisfy the requirements of this subsection, it shall be presumed that the tenant has paid a security deposit equal to no less than one month’s rent at the rate charged when the tenant originally rented the dwelling unit and the landlord’s successor shall be bound by this amount in all further matters relating to the security deposit.

(g) If the landlord and the tenant disagree about the right of the landlord to claim and retain the security deposit or any portion of it, either the landlord or the tenant may commence an action in the small claims division of the district court, as provided in chapter 633 and the rules of court thereunder, to adjudicate the matter.

(h) In any action in the small claims division of the district court pursuant to subsection (g) where the court determines that:

(1) The landlord wrongfully and wilfully retained a security deposit or part of a security deposit, the court may award the tenant damages in an amount equal to three times the amount of the security deposit, or part thereof, wrongfully and wilfully retained and the cost of suit.

(2) The landlord wrongfully retained a security deposit or part of a security deposit, the court shall award the tenant damages in an amount equal to the amount of the security deposit, or part thereof, wrongfully retained and the cost of suit.

(3) The landlord was entitled to retain the security deposit or a part of it, the court shall award the landlord damages in an amount equal to the amount of the security deposit, or part thereof, in dispute and the cost of suit.

(4) In any such action, neither the landlord nor the tenant may be represented by an attorney, including salaried employees of the landlord or tenant.

(a) For purposes of this section:

“Facility dog” means a dog that is a graduate of an assistance dog organization that is accredited by Assistance Dogs International or a similar internationally recognized organization whose main purpose is to grant accreditation to assistance dog organizations based on standards of excellence in all areas of assistance dog acquisition, training, and placement.  A “facility dog” shall be specially trained to provide emotional support to witnesses testifying in judicial proceedings without causing a distraction during the proceedings.

“Vulnerable witness” means a witness whose ability to testify in a judicial proceeding will be hampered or ineffective without the assistance of a facility dog, for reasons including but not limited to intellectual or emotional disability, intimidation, or age.

(b) A court may permit the use of a facility dog in a judicial proceeding involving the testimony of a vulnerable witness if the court determines that there is a compelling necessity for the use of a facility dog to facilitate the testimony of the vulnerable witness.

(c) Before the use of a facility dog in a judicial proceeding, the moving party shall file a motion certifying to the court:

(1) The credentials of the facility dog;

(2) That the facility dog is adequately insured;  and

(3) That a relationship has been established between the witness and the facility dog.

(d) To the extent necessary, the court may impose restrictions, or instructions to the jury, regarding the presence of the facility dog during the proceedings.

(1) A person commits the offense of causing injury or death to a service dog or law enforcement animal if:

(a) The person recklessly causes substantial bodily injury to or the death of any service dog or law enforcement animal while the service dog or law enforcement animal is in the discharge of its duties;  or

(b) The person is the owner of a dog and recklessly permits that dog to attack a service dog or law enforcement animal while the service dog or law enforcement animal is in the discharge of its duties, resulting in the substantial bodily injury or death of the service dog or law enforcement animal.

(2) Subsection (1) shall not apply to:

(a) Accepted veterinary practices;

(b) Activities carried on for scientific research governed by standards of accepted educational or medicinal practices;  or

(c) Cropping or docking as customarily practiced and permitted by law.

(3) Any person who commits the offense of causing injury or death to a service dog or law enforcement animal shall be guilty of a class C felony.

(4) In addition to any other penalties, any person who is convicted of a violation of this section shall be ordered to make restitution to:

(a) The owner of the service dog or law enforcement animal for any veterinary bills and out-of-pocket costs incurred as a result of the injury to the service dog  or law enforcement animal;  and

(b) The person, entity, or organization that incurs the cost of retraining or replacing the service dog or law enforcement animal for the cost of retraining or replacing the service dog or law enforcement animal if it is disabled or killed.

(5) As used in this section “service dog” shall have the same meaning as in section 347-2.5.

(1) A person commits the offense of intentional interference with the use of a service dog or law enforcement animal if the person, with no legal justification, intentionally or knowingly strikes, beats, kicks, cuts, stabs, shoots, or administers any type of harmful substance or poison to a service dog or law enforcement animal while the service dog or law enforcement animal is in the discharge of its duties.

(2) Subsection (1) shall not apply to:

(a) Accepted veterinary practices;

(b) Activities carried on for scientific research governed by standards or accepted educational or medicinal practices;  or

(c) Cropping or docking as customarily practiced and permitted by law.

(3) Intentional interference with the use of a service dog or law enforcement animal is a misdemeanor.

(4) In addition to any other penalties, any person who is convicted of a violation of this section shall be ordered to make restitution to:

(a) The owner of the service dog or law enforcement animal for any veterinary bills and out-of-pocket costs incurred as a result of the injury to the service dog or law enforcement animal;  and

(b) The person, entity, or organization that incurs the cost of retraining or replacing the service dog or law enforcement animal for the cost of retraining or replacing the service dog or law enforcement animal, if it is disabled or killed.

(5) Nothing in this section is intended to affect any civil remedies available for a violation of this section.

(6) As used in this section, “service dog” shall have the same meaning as in section 347-2.5.