Animal bites, especially dog bites, frequently occur throughout the U.S. In fact, according to recent facts on dog bite liability, dog bites happen a lot more than people realize. Millions of people get bit by dogs each year.
Whether it’s a dog or any other animal, you should never treat getting bitten as trivial. A bite wound can result in infection, disability, and costly medical expenses. Don’t find yourself paying out of pocket for your damages. Instead, file a claim and win a settlement that gets you financial compensation.
Laws Surrounding Dog Bites
Since dog bites are by far the most common type of animal bite people suffer from, we will primarily focus on the laws surrounding them. However, these laws still generally apply to almost all animal bites depending on the state you reside in.
As a general rule of thumb, the person that owns the dog or animal that bit you will always be at fault for whatever damages you sustained. The duty of care lies with them to protect others from their animals. There are exceptions to this rule, but overall, you shouldn’t have any issues filing a claim against them.
Dog bite cases can be tricky, and it’s important to retain at an early stage an aggressive and knowledgeable attorney who will work to ensure that you win a fair settlement. In addition, our dog bite attorneys will work to get your damages paid by the at-fault party.
For a free legal consultation, call 800-537-8185
Determining Who Was at Fault
Another person aside from the owner, such as someone who was supposed to be watching or caring for the dog, may be liable instead of or in addition to the owner, and an injury attorney can do things you cannot necessarily do on your own in this regard.
An experienced lawyer will have the resources and know-how to track down the dog’s owner, caretaker, homeowner, landlord, property management, and any other party or company that may be liable for the attack. After a traumatic event such as this, you should focus on your recovery. Prioritize your health and wellness, and let us handle the legal aspects of winning a settlement.
When Can I Not Receive Compensation?
There are specific instances where you won’t be able to receive compensation for your dog bite. While this is rare, you should be aware of them when you file your claim.
If You Aggravated the Dog Intentionally
The law will generally only protect you if you didn’t provoke the dog. If the dog that bit you was acting out of self-defense or because you were antagonizing it, then you would have no right to file a claim against the owner. In this specific circumstance, the bite you suffered happened due to your own negligence, not anyone else’s.
If You Were Trespassing
If you trespassed onto private property and got bit by a dog on the property, you won’t have a case. Trespassing on private property that has a dog, or any animal for that matter, directly puts you at risk of injury. On top of that, trespassing is illegal, and doing so nullifies any case you may have had.
If You Reside in a One-Bite Rule State
The one-bite rule is an old law that’s practiced in some states. Currently, there are sixteen states that still have the one-bite rule, or some variation of it, in effect:
- New Mexico
- New York
- North Dakota
- South Dakota
As long as you don’t reside in one of these states, you can file a claim for your dog bite injury, even if it was the first time the dog bit you. The one-bite law originally existed to provide dog owners a chance to train their dogs to prevent another incident, but this has largely been repealed throughout the country.
How Attorneys Can Help in Dog Bite Cases
If you want to get the most out of your settlement, you’ll need to hire a dog bite lawyer in your area to help you file your claim. Although there’s no requirement to have legal representation assist you, not having a lawyer puts your ability to win a fair settlement at significant risk. Our lawyers here at Morris Bart, LLC can help you by:
- Gathering evidence regarding your dog bite case, such as photos, police reports, animal control records, and witness testimonies.
- Fighting against the insurance company that will try to get you to settle for less than what you deserve.
- Ensuring that you get proper medical treatment.
- Calculating all of your damages accurately.
- Taking your case to trial if necessary.
It’s essential that you get an attorney to assist you with your claim. To win the compensation that covers all of your damages, it’s best to get one of our experienced and knowledgeable dog bite lawyers to help.
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For years, Morris Bart, LLC has helped innocent dog and animal bite victims get the compensation they need to recover without going into financial ruins. We dedicate ourselves to our clients and always put their needs and best interests ahead of anything else.
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