Bitten By A Dog? Here's Why You Really Do Need An Attorney

Posted on: 30 June 2019

Dog bites can create devastating injuries. Even a small dog can, under the right circumstances, leave an individual scarred for life. Facial wounds and serious hand injuries are particularly common among children and professional dog groomers, but nobody is really immune from a dog bite and all that entails.

But, how important is it to get an attorney's assistance with your dog bite claim? If the owner of the dog is stepping up to help with medical bills, should you even bother?

Absolutely. Here's why it's smart to talk to a dog bite lawyer after an incident:

1. You have no real idea how far the owner's generosity or remorse will go.

Even if the dog's owner is initially supportive and willing to pay your medical bills, you may find that changes if you don't get well "fast enough." You may be accused of trying to take advantage of the owner or exaggerating your injuries. Or, your bills may simply grow too much for the owner to handle without insurance involvement. 

2. Every state has very specific dog bite laws. 

Dog bite laws vary immensely from state to state and situation to situation. Some states have a "one bite" law that protects owners against claims if their dog has never bitten anyone before, while others do not. There are also different laws that apply in different situations, such as when a bite occurs in a dog park or when the animal was in its own enclosed yard.

Without an attorney's advice, you may not even realize what you're entitled to receive in terms of medical care and compensation for your lost wages, any scarring, mental trauma, pain and suffering, and more.

3.  Your attorney may be able to identify additional sources of compensation.

You know that you have the right to look at the dog's owner for compensation when you've been bitten, but what happens if that owner has no insurance? There may be no source of funds to pay your claim unless you happen to know how to look at shared liability issues.

Attorneys can often identify additional parties who share liability in a dog bite claim in order to maximize the compensation a victim can claim. Some possibilities include:

  • Holding a landlord responsible for a tenant's dog when the dog has a known history of bites or is considered a dangerous breed
  • Holding a company responsible when the dog was in its care -- such as when the animal was being kept by a dog groomer, dog daycare, or kennel when the bite occurred
  • Holding parents responsible when their minor child's dog is the one that attacked you

Don't suffer through the aftermath of a dog bite on your own. Talk to an experienced dog bite lawyer today or go to sites that specialize in dog bite law information.