Dogs are a popular pet, with one-third of all homes housing a canine. While these furry friends are generally a source of comfort, their behavior can quickly change, leaving adults and children with severe wounds. A dog bite can cause physical, emotional, psychological, and financial harm.
If you or your child suffered severe harm from a dog bite, you can pursue compensation. Free case consultation with a California dog bite firm can help you learn more about your legal options.
Common Reasons Dogs Bite
Any size or breed of dog can bite, creating wounds prone to infection and disease. According to the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), dogs bite in reaction to something.
The AVMA reports that dogs typically bite if:
- They become startled or scared.
- They feel threatened.
- They bite to protect someone or something.
- They are sick or injured.
Rough play with a dog can also result in a bite. If the dog becomes overexcited, a nip can progress into a bite that forever changes your life. Pursuing compensation for your dog bite damages is easier with a lawyer by your side.
Pet owners are responsible for maintaining control of their pets and protecting others from harm. It is not uncommon to encounter dogs at neighborhood cookouts, pet-friendly events, or merely walking down the street.
If your encounter with a dog turned tragic due to a negligent pet owner, consider contacting a Burbank dog bite lawyer today. A lawyer can manage the details of your case from start to finish.
Your Dog Bite Injuries
Strong canine teeth can tear the skin and damage tissue, muscle, and tendons. The pull and tearing can result in a jagged wound that requires immediate medical attention.
The Cleveland Clinic reports that infection is the greatest danger from a dog bite. Roughly half of dog bites introduce bacteria to the victim’s body. Of particular concern is the rabies virus.
The rabies virus affects the central nervous system. Without immediate and proper medical care, the virus can result in death. Pet vaccinations can prevent the spread of rabies from a bite. Therefore, it is vital to learn if the pet owner responsible for your bite has documentation of their dog’s rabies vaccination.
Children can easily suffer facial wounds due to the proximity between a child’s height and a dog’s mouth. Plastic surgery to repair the damage and Post-traumatic stress disorder are two possible outcomes of such a frightening experience.
The fear and emotion that follow a dog bite can significantly impact a child. Nightmares, changes in behavior, and other signs of distress are distressing for both children and their parents.
Adults and children who suffer physical injuries from dog bites face a long recovery. Surgery, intravenous antibiotics, physical therapy, and counseling are expensive and time-consuming. Some victims may never regain use of a limb or suffer permanent nerve damage.
Dog bite victims need immediate medical attention. Only a medical professional can determine the seriousness of your injury and decide upon the appropriate treatment.
Seeking immediate medical attention serves as necessary documentation of your injuries. In addition, evidence of medical care can prove invaluable for your civil case.
Pet negligence is never acceptable. The pet owner responsible for your harm should pay your damages —not you. A dog bite case involving an injury is a civil matter best left in the hands of an experienced California dog bite lawyer.
The Pursuit of Compensation for Your Dog Bite Damages
A civil case typically begins with a claim. Your lawyer will negotiate with an insurance company for a fair settlement. Most dog bite cases settle through negotiations. Avoiding a trial saves both sides time and money.
However, the complexity of a case sometimes dictates the need for a trial. Therefore, hiring a lawyer with courtroom experience is essential for presenting your case before a judge and jury.
Insurance companies seek to protect the best interests of their clients. Having someone by your side to protect your best interests is vital for pursuing the compensation you deserve.
A dog bite lawyer can fight for the following types of compensation:
- Medical costs: Hospital and doctors’ fees, including medical transport
- Ongoing medical costs: Expenses relating to continuous medical care needs such as therapy and prescription medications
- Lost income: Time spent away from work recovering from your wounds
- Potential future earnings: Loss of future income if your injury prevents you from returning to your job
- Pain and suffering: The mental anguish and overall negative impact of the damage on your life
Compensation is never promised nor guaranteed. However, fighting for compensation with help from a Burbank dog bite lawyer is better than settling for less than you deserve alone.
How a Lawyer Can Help You
An insurance company adjuster may contact you with a settlement offer. A common goal of many adjusters is to approach victims before they hire a lawyer. If the adjuster can get a victim to accept an initial settlement offer, they protect their best interests.
With a focus on protecting profits, insurance companies sometimes use tactics designed to confuse dog bite victims. However, you can protect your best interests by hiring a lawyer to counter these unfair tactics.
You may not know the actual cost of your future medical needs. A dog bite lawyer familiar with wounds, care, and potential complications can help you fight for the compensation you need now and possibly later.
A dog bite lawyer can help you protect you from aggressive insurance company representatives. Dog bites are a frightening and painful experience. Recovering from dog bite injuries requires rest. Your recovery is not the time to deal with the pressure to accept a settlement offer.
Insurance companies use a variety of high-pressure tactics to convince accident victims to accept a low-sum offer. The amount offered may appear enough to cover your damages, yet it is likely the least amount the insurance company wants to pay.
Accepting an insurance company settlement offer without a lawyer to review it closes your claim. You cannot fight for additional compensation later, should you experience medical complications.
Your lawyer should know California dog bite laws and the complex games insurance companies play during negotiations. If you or a loved one suffered serious harm due to an uncontrolled dog, contact a California dog bite lawyer for your free case consultation.
California Statute of Limitations
A dog bite occurs in a second, resulting in a long recovery and possibly permanent scarring. Life as you knew it comes to a stop as you deal with multiple medical procedures and appointments. Time passes in a blur, and if you are not careful, you may miss your opportunity to file a civil lawsuit.
The California statute of limitations allows two years for pursuing a dog bite case. The time starts the moment you suffer a dog bite. Twenty-four months may seem like a long time. However, missing the court deadline for filing your lawsuit is not an option.
Victims who fail to file their lawsuit within the statute of limitations miss their chance to pursue compensation. Filing a civil lawsuit may protect your opportunity for a trial should insurance company negotiations fail.
Your lawyer will fight for the best possible outcome of your case. They must receive the information they need to build a strong case for fair compensation. They must also ensure that your case meets the statute of limitations deadline.
Dog bite victims can help their lawyers by gathering as much information as possible relating to their case.
Evidence that can perhaps help your case includes:
- Photographs of the dog and your wounds
- Contact information for eyewitnesses
- Copies of your medical reports and expenses
- Proof of time missed from work
Compensation can never return your life to how it was before the bite. If successful, however, your case may ease your financial stress.
The dog bite you or someone you love experienced demands justice. Consider contacting a California dog bite lawyer today to learn if you have a case and, if so, how to proceed. Pursuing compensation may prevent another dog bite incident from happening to someone else.
Your Right to Pursue Compensation
Negligent pet owners are typically liable for harm caused by their dogs. Therefore, you have a right to pursue compensation for the damages that result from their negligence.
Dog bite cases sometimes involve friends, neighbors, or other close acquaintances. Pursuing compensation from someone you know does not make your case easier. However, your attorney can manage communications and other details on your behalf. Most communication occurs between your attorney and the pet owner’s insurance company.
Your attorney can keep you informed throughout your case. Focusing on your health and recovery or that of a loved one leaves you no time to manage your case alone. Consider seeking legal help from a California dog bite lawyer without delay.
Free Case Consultation Leaves You Nothing to Lose
A free case consultation leaves you nothing to lose as you explore your legal options. Most Personal Injury Law firms in California offer free case consultations to learn more about victims and the accident that changed their lives.
Consultations also allow lawyers to determine if your accident or dog bite involved negligence. Then, if an attorney proceeds with your case, they can work to identify all liable parties.
The injuries you or a loved one suffered are not fair. While dogs are unpredictable, pet owners owe others a duty of care. Maintaining control of a dog is imperative for keeping visitors or others safe from harm.
A severe dog bite may take weeks or months to heal. Numerous surgeries, therapies, and prescription medication are sometimes necessary. These and other treatments come at a cost.
If you or a close loved one suffered a severe dog bite, consider scheduling a free case consultation today. The faster you reach out to a California dog bite lawyer, the sooner they can get to work for you.
Call a California Dog Bite Lawyer Near You
Dog bite lawyers understand the trauma accident victims experience. Their work with accident victims provides them with the compassion and experience necessary for helping victims fight for compensation.
Medical bills for severe dog bites begin the moment you receive treatment. The costs only climb as doctors treat your wound. An inability to work only adds to your stress as the bills continue to mount.
A dog bite that becomes infected or results in a virus can cause severe and long-term health complications. Fighting for the compensation you need both now and possibly later is where a California dog bite lawyer can help you.
Dogs provide comfort and fun for millions of pet owners. Children especially delight in seeing dogs and are generally eager to interact with them. Unfortunately, their innocence can result in severe injury and psychological trauma when a dog reacts by biting.
A California dog bite lawyer needs time to build a strong compensation claim. A careful review of all evidence, including your medical reports, will help negotiate a fair settlement.
Protect Your Best Interests
The clock for pursuing your civil case does not pause for your medical treatments and procedures. Instead, it continues to tick, costing you valuable time for pursuing and fighting for compensation.
A dog bite is undoubtedly traumatic and sometimes life-threatening. If you or a loved one suffered severe harm due to an uncontrolled dog, a California dog bite lawyer can help you.
Do not settle for less than you deserve. Your injuries or those of a loved one demand justice. Consider seeking the help you need by contacting a dog bite attorney for a free case consultation today.