There is a saying that a dog is a man’s best friend. Well, whoever has coined this adage has never been bitten by dogs. Even though the dog owners know that a dog can live their entire life without biting anyone even once, however, the chances are always there. No matter how much-domesticated dogs are, wild nature always lurks somewhere in their mind.
That’s why under the right circumstances, they can attack. In Canada, if your dog bites a pet, livestock, or a person, you will be legally liable for the damages.
Dog attacks are a severe problem in Canada. According to statistics, each year about 500,000 dog bites are reported in Canada. That’s a lot of potential liability. The owners should know about the laws of the states and take necessary precautions.
Saying that the general people should be aware of the steps they should take after getting bitten by a dog. The steps below will help you to protect your rights to fair medical and financial after an act of negligence.
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Step One: Prompt Medical Attention
Dog bites hold a serious threat to infection and scarring for the rest of your life if you don’t take immediate medical treatment. Even if the wound is small and harmless to your eye, it can lead to severe problems later.
According to the practitioners of Pace Law, if you are to file a lawsuit against the dog owner, you should maintain all the medical records of your treatment. You should take a photograph of the bite wound to make sure your lawyer and the judges understand the gravity of the bite.
Step 2: Report The Attack
Once you have got the required medical attention, you should report the dog bite to the proper authorities. You can make a phone call to the local police who can guide you to the proper channels. For example, if you were attacked in the Toronto area, you can get in touch with the Toronto Animal Services.
While talking to the authorities, you should provide as many details about the attack as possible. You can describe the features of the dog, the time and location of the attack witnesses, and if possible the name and contact information of the owner.
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Step 3: Secure The Evidence
You should keep all the evidence of the attack handy to make sure you don’t face any issues later. Photos of the injury, the witnesses, proof of ownership, medical reports, and police reports are the basic things that you should collect. You can take the help of the practitioner to get all this evidence before it becomes impossible to obtain.
Step 4: Protect Your Rights to Compensation
You should hire a lawyer who has experience in handling dog bite cases previously. A good lawyer can take care of all the aspects of the case and make sure that you get the required compensation.
What Is The Alternative to Lawsuit?
No doubt finding the owner, the witnesses and maintaining all the evidence until the lawsuit is a hectic job. The problem is that even after all these, the owners might decline to take responsibility. On the other hand, some owners might be open for dialogue and want to avoid the lawsuit. In such situations, what should you do? Here are some alternatives that you should consider before filing the lawsuit.
You Know The owner
So, before you sue the owner of the dog, think if you want to salvage the relationship with the owner of the dog. If you drag them to court, you will be damaging your relationship with them for life. Consider the attitude of the owner and see if there is an opportunity to move past the incident.
Receiving Compensation Is Not Guaranteed
Even though the responsibility of animal control falls on the shoulders of the municipalities of Canada, some of the states, like Ontario have stricter regulations. However, most states allow the victim to sue for compensation.
The trouble is, to get the compensation, you have to gather the evidence meticulously to figure out how compensation you should demand. If you fail to do that, the chances of getting compensation become slim to none. So, it is always better to consult a professional practitioner of pace law while gathering the evidence.
Consider The Context
There are also rules about when you can’t sue the dog owner for the incident. For example, even though the Ontario lawsuit is very strong about dog bites, the victim can’t sue the dog owner if he enters the property of the dog owner to commit a crime.
So, if you are on someone else’s property and attacked by their dog, make sure to consider the context before using them. Even though the law is quite complex, there are still grey zones that are wide open for interpretations which can very well go against you.
Nobody wants to go to the emergency room because of a dog bite. Things become grave if there’s a child involved. To tackle the situation properly, make sure to get in touch with the practitioners of pace law. They will help you to navigate in the right direction.