A dog bite attorney is a legal professional who is trained and experienced in helping dog bite victims receive compensation for their injuries. Each state and jurisdiction has its own laws governing dog bite cases. A dog bite attorney has intimate knowledge of these laws and knows how to use these laws to protect and maximize a person’s legal interests.
Dog bite lawyers practice a subsection of personal injury law relating to injuries from bites from dogs. This could, depending on the firm, include other injuries inflicted by household pets and even livestock on a farm. A dog bite attorney needs to know about animal behavior and tendencies, and those of their owners.
WHAT IS A DOG BITE Attorney?
Dog bite lawyers deal with a combination of city and county ordinances such as statutory law, state case law, and common law. Dog bite law attorneys also handle cases where someone is a victim to a dog bite. Dog bites can be very serious and may require a lot of medical attention. A dog bite attorney will represent an individual and try to get the proper compensation for the dog bite victim. Dog bites can happen at any time, therefore you should contact a dog bites attorney in your area as soon as you become a victim.
A dog bite attorney can ensure that you file a legal claim in a timely manner, as most states have a statute of limitations that restricts the amount of time during which a person can file a dog bite lawsuit. The statute of limitations for dog bite lawsuits varies by state and is generally longer for those cases involving children.
In order to have a successful dog bite lawsuit, a dog bite attorney will help a plaintiff prove that another party was responsible for a dog bite injury and the resulting damages. Often the person who is held liable for dog bite injuries is the owner of the dog in question. Under some circumstances, a dog bite attorney may encourage a victim to file a lawsuit against other liable parties such as a landlord or child care center depending on the specific circumstances of the dog bite case.
There are several actions that a victim can take in order to facilitate the development of a strong legal case with a dog bite attorney. When a dog bite incident occurs, the first thing to do is seek medical help for a victim’s injuries. Medical records of the physical damages can help a dog bite attorney build a stronger case with a victim later on. The victim of a dog bite should collect all pertinent information about the dog that bit and the owner of the dog. Information about the dog should include the color, size, and type of dog (or dogs) that were involved. Information about the breed, possible age, sex, licensing information (found on a dog collar), and whether or not the dog(s) is fixed should be collected if possible.
The victim should also try to determine who owns, or is responsible, for the dog(s) that bit. In some cases, the dog owner will be on the scene at the time of the incident. Other times an owner may not be immediately identifiable. If the owner is present, a victim should collect pertinent information such as their name, phone number, address, and more information about the dog. If an owner is not present it may be helpful to speak to witnesses of the incident to determine who is responsible for the dog(s). Licensing information on the dog’s tags can also help to identify the owner.
It is also advantageous to take pictures of dog bite injuries. A victim should also record other important information about the dog bite incident such as the date and time of day, the location where the incident took place, as well as the contact information from potential witnesses. This information can greatly help you and your dog bite attorney build a strong case.
Getting Help from a Dog Bite Attorney
Legal issues behind dog bite injury claims can be helped with the services of a Dog Bite Attorney.
A dog bite attorney knows what most people are not aware of – hot temperatures, children, and dogs do not mix well together. According to a study published in the March 2009 issue of the journal Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, a definite correlation exists between dog bites and rising temperatures. Moreover, 40% of these injuries require medical intervention in the operating room.
With summer at its peak, parents and dog owners should be aware of the legal issues and resources available
Medical Attention After a Dog Bite Injury
Getting prompt medical attention is the first step after a dog bite injury. Not only does it help with the recovery process, but prompt medical attention could also affect the eligibility of a claim. Waiting several days could hamper the process of an injury claim.
Getting Necessary Information for an Injury Claim
The following items are the most important information needed for an injury claim.
- the name and contact information of the dog’s owner;
- the type of insurance the dog owner has to cover the dog bite injury such as homeowner’s insurance, renter’s insurance, commercial general liability insurance, or insurance covering employers providing protection for employees;
- contact information of the insurance company;
- photographs of injuries, supporting evidence of witnesses (if any) as well as their contact information;
- information on dog bite attorneys.
Why Get Help from a Dog Bite Attorney
What can a dog bite lawyer do for a dog attack victim? Because laws vary in different states, getting compensation for a dog bite injury in the United States is neither straightforward nor simple. Some states have what is known as the “one bite” rule which can compromise the claim of a victim.
The rationale behind the “one bite” rule holds that a dog owner is not considered liable for a dog’s first bite “unless the dog owner himself caused the bite through negligent, reckless or intentional, conduct or by negligence….” Determining whether the owner is liable is often tricky, but this can be done most effectively by a dog bite attorney who has professional expertise in the area.
Another advantage to using a dog bite lawyer lies in the amount of compensation a victim can receive from the claims process. According to dogbitelaw.com, insurance adjusters offer a victim 10-20% of what they would provide a victim who used the services of an attorney. A victim using the services of a personal injury lawyer could receive 66%, a figure far above what a layperson could get for himself.
Finally, the claims process entails legal knowledge and know-how specific to the legal profession. For example, only dog bite attorneys understand the relationship between injury and compensation. Finding the right settlement claim without jeopardizing one’s settlement process is difficult for the lay victim who, without legal experience or professional knowledge, can only guess. Only a dog bite attorney can prove an earning capacity loss that the victim is entitled to if he or she is disfigured. Such a specialized topic is beyond the reach of a typical injury victim.
Dog bite injuries can be very traumatic. For some victims, consulting the professional advice of a dog bite attorney may be sufficient; for others, using the attorney’s legal expertise is indispensable. The key lies in knowing as much as possible about the “ins and outs” of the legal process and recognizing how and where a dog bite attorney can help.
FACTS ABOUT DOG BITE LAW
Dog bite lawyers take on cases that deal with animal bites such as dog bites. An animal bite can be a very serious and dangerous occurrence, sometimes resulting in the death of a victim. If a victim falls prey to a serious animal bite, he or she may be able to file a lawsuit against the owner of the animal. A dog bite attorney can handle all of the legal aspects of filing the lawsuit. On the other hand, a dog bite lawyer can also defend the owner of the animal who committed the offense.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a dog bite incident, you may wish to contact a dog bite attorney who can evaluate your case to determine your legal rights and options in seeking compensation for your damages.