When encountering a dog, the last thought on many people’s minds would be falling victim to a dog attack. However, incidents occur frequently and can leave dog attack victims injured and dealing with unforeseen medical expenses.
After experiencing a dog bite, you may be interested in pursuing justice for your injuries. If so, make sure you hire the right kind of lawyer. A personal injury lawyer can help pursue compensation on your behalf for dog bite cases.
After a Dog Bite, It’s Critical to Have the Right Kind of Lawyer
If a dog bites you, you should let a lawyer handle your case to pursue financial recovery on your behalf. But with so many types of attorneys, which is the right one?
While many believe all lawyers are the same, that’s not the case. A majority of attorneys focus their practice on certain areas of law, meaning they have special knowledge and understanding of the law and procedures associated with a specific type of case.
Like other cases, dog bite cases require a particular type of lawyer.
Dog bites cause injuries. Therefore, you want to work with a personal injury lawyer after sustaining injuries caused by a dog bite.
Personal injury lawyers have the experience and knowledge needed to handle cases involving injured victims. Personal injury attorneys:
- Protect injured victims’ rights
- Seek compensation for the victim’s injuries and losses
- Hold the responsible party accountable
Dog bite lawyers do all of these things for their clients after a dog bite results in injuries.
Dog bite cases are unique and often challenging to handle. Working with the right kind of attorney can make a significant difference in the outcome of your claim.
Proving Liability for Dog Bite Cases
To hold someone accountable for your dog bite and pursue compensation, you’ll need to prove that someone is liable. Proving liability depends on state-specific laws.
Some states operate under a “one-bite rule” for dog bite cases, meaning dog owners would only face liability if they knew or had reason to know their dog had vicious tendencies. If the owner didn’t know or have a reason to know, they might be able to get out of liability for the victim’s injuries.
Half the states operate under strict liability, meaning a victim must simply prove the owner’s dog caused their injury and they had a legal right to be where the incident occurred.
Negligence statutes also exist for dog bites. If the dog owner had a legal right to protect others from their dog and failed to do so, they can be held liable.
Usually, the dog’s owner is the party responsible for a dog bite. However, in some states, other parties may be liable, including the dog’s caretaker, property owners, or landlords.
Because proving liability can be tricky, a personal injury lawyer is best equipped to handle your dog bite case. Personal injury attorneys know the laws and procedures in your area, allowing them to prove the responsible party’s liability.
Compensation After a Dog Bite
Depending on your situation, the dog owner or their insurance company will be responsible for paying you for your injuries and losses.
Compensation for a dog bite depends on the details of your specific incident but can include the following:
- Medical expenses
- Lost income
- Pain and suffering
- Property damage
To fight for compensation, you’ll need to know what your case is worth. This typically requires an investigation of your case to determine the value of your damages.
How a Personal Injury Lawyer Can Help You with a Dog Bite Case
While a dog bite claim may appear manageable and a lawyer might seem unnecessary, these cases can be challenging and require the assistance of a knowledgeable personal injury attorney.
Below are just a few of the important tasks your lawyer could perform for your dog bite case.
Evidence is crucial for dog bite cases. Your personal injury attorney knows exactly the type of evidence you need to prove liability and seek financial recovery.
Evidence used for dog bite cases includes:
- Witness statements
- Medical records
- Vet records
Your dog bite lawyer can determine what evidence would be best to strengthen your claim. Additionally, you may have some evidence that could help build your case.
Liability is one of the trickiest parts of a dog bite case, and it could be particularly daunting if you try to prove this on your own.
Without establishing the responsible party’s liability, you wouldn’t be able to obtain the compensation you need. Therefore, it’s best to leave this critical step to a personal injury lawyer.
Fighting Against Potential Defenses
It is not uncommon for dog owners or responsible parties to raise a defense in an attempt to avoid liability. Defenses for dog bite cases can include:
- The victim was trespassing
- The victim provoked the dog
- The victim assumed the risk
Personal injury lawyers are familiar with common defense tactics and can create a strategy to refute the opposing party’s defense.
Aside from holding the liable party responsible, a dog bite case aims to pursue compensation for your injuries and losses. In some cases, it’s easier said than done, as challenges may arise.
Fortunately, a dog bite attorney knows how to manage your case to help get you the most favorable financial outcome.
After a Dog Bite, Review Your Case with a Personal Injury Lawyer
After experiencing a dog bite and sustaining injuries, do not hesitate to discuss your situation with a personal injury attorney. This kind of lawyer will be the most familiar with dog bite claims. With experienced representation on your side, you’ll have the best chance at fair compensation.
If you’re interested in speaking with a dog bite lawyer, contact The Joel Bieber Firm for a complimentary consultation.