Being bitten by a dog can be extremely traumatic and may result in serious injuries, permanent disability, or even death in extreme circumstances. It can also cause severe and permanent emotional scars. If the dog bite is grave, you are likely to want expensive and protracted medical and psychological treatment. The incident may also result in loss of wages. In addition to seeking appropriate dog bite treatment, you may also consider consulting a dog bite lawyer to negotiate for compensation from the party at fault and the insurance company or even sue the party responsible.
When Is the Owner Responsible For The Dog Attack?
According to Veterinary Medical Association, more than 4.5 million people get bitten by dogs in America every year. A dog attack can seriously impact the victim’s life, and nobody can violate others’ right to safety. However, one can only proceed to prove liability on the owner’s part for the action of the dog if you can prove that the owner knew or should have known that the dog’s behavior can cause harm to others. Additionally, you must prove that if the owner had exercised reasonable care, the dog could have been prevented from biting. You have to establish that the dog’s owner did not exercise reasonable care to prevent the dog from biting, and importantly, the victim of the bite did not provoke the dog. The victim doesn’t need to have been bitten by the dog to claim compensation. Claims may include injuries, consequences like dog scratches, and getting knocked down.
How Can a Dog Bite Lawyer Help?
The principal function of lawyers for dog bite injuries is to help you understand your legal rights after a dog attack and ensure they are not violated. The lawyer can undertake the gathering of evidence of the dog attack, consult with pet behavior experts and doctors, and decide if the compensation claim has merit. He will also estimate the amount of compensation you should claim. The claim amount will depend on the circumstances of the incident, the extent of injury and trauma, the expense of treatment and rehabilitation, both current and in the future, loss of income, and change of lifestyle required. The lawyer will also help to identify the party at fault and negotiate with him or his insurance company for a reasonable out-of-court settlement. If no settlement can be reached, the lawyer will also assist in instituting a lawsuit in an appropriate court of law and argue the case in the trial.
There is no method for arriving at the amount of compensation you will get in an out-of-court settlement or an award by the court. The dog bite lawyer will play a central role in demonstrating that the dog’s owner had been responsible for the negligence that resulted in the dog attacking the victim. It may involve expert testimony, including that of doctors and vets, besides eye-witness accounts, CCTV footage, photos, etc. The lawyer may also produce evidence of unruly past behavior of the dog to prove that the owner should have known of the possibility of the dog attack and taken care to prevent it.