There are thousands of dog bites each year. Some cause extremely severe injuries, even death. If you have been bitten by a dog and suffered an injury, you are not alone.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 20% of dog bite victims need medical attention. At Pintas & Mullins Law Firm, we know how unfair it is to be bitten and injured by a dog through no fault of your own. You deserve justice for your injuries, and we want to help you get it.
If you are in Iowa and have been hurt by a dog, an Iowa dog bite lawyer can evaluate your case to help you determine whether you might be eligible to collect compensation for the injuries and suffering you have endured.
If you are interested in learning more, give Pintas & Mullins Law Firm a call today at (800) 816-0755. We offer a free, no-commitment consultation and take no payment upfront. We work on a contingency basis, so we are not paid anything until we win a settlement or verdict in your favor.
Proving Negligence When You Have Been Bitten by a Dog
If you have been bitten and injured by a dog, it is highly likely that the dog’s owner is liable for your injury. Only in very rare circumstances are Iowan dog owners not held fully liable for their dogs. According to Iowa Code §351.28, Iowa dog owners are strictly liable for all damage caused by their dogs. There are only two exceptions to this rule. The only two defenses for dog owners in Iowa are:
- The victim of a dog bite is breaking the law in a way that directly contributes to the injury.
- The dog has rabies.
In all dog bite injury cases, unless one of the following two above listed reasons applies, a dog owner is 100% liable for any and all injuries their dog causes.
There is no concept of “shared fault” liability or “contributory negligence” in Iowa dog bite injury in cases. A victim is not ever blamed for their bite unless they are “breaking the law in a way that directly contributes to the injury.” Otherwise, the dog owner is completely responsible for their dog and its actions.
Recoverable Compensation in a Dog Bite Accident
While some states put a cap on the amount of economic or non-economic damages a personal injury victim can claim, Iowa does not. There is no limit on the amount that any given individual can be awarded in a dog bite case.
There are two types of damages a victim can collect. Economic damages, which compensate for financial expenses and losses resulting from your accident, and non-economic damages, which compensate for non-financial losses.
Economic damages are easily verifiable and trackable via records, bills, documentation, and paper trails. Your economic award will cover the expenses you incurred, including:
- Ambulance rides
- Hospital visits
- Emergency surgery and treatment
- Reconstructive surgery for disfiguring wounds
- Doctor visits and physical rehabilitation
- Medical accommodations needed
- Any lost past or future wages
Non-economic damages compensate a victim’s non-financial losses, such as:
- A decrease in quality of life
- Physical pain
- Overall suffering
- The severity of the injury suffered
- Length of recovery
- Disfigurement or permanent injury
Deadline for Filing Your Lawsuit
A lawsuit has a time period in which it must be filed before it expires, or becomes legally invalid, called the statute of limitations. Each state and type of lawsuit has its own statute of limitations.
In Iowa, according to the Iowa Code §614.1, an individual has exactly two years from the date of injury to file a personal injury lawsuit. Once this time period passes, a person’s legal right to file the lawsuit permanently expires.
It might be helpful to hire an Iowa dog bite lawyer because they can answer any other state-specific questions you might have about filing your Iowa personal injury lawsuit.
Injuries Suffered in Dog Bites
The injuries a dog bite victim might suffer include:
- Puncture wounds
- Soft-tissue injury
- Facial and other nerve damage
- Blood loss requiring transfusion
- Severe bacterial infections from toxic bacteria found in dogs’ mouths
The Reasons Why Dogs Bite
According to the CDC, any dog can bite, especially when they are:
- Protecting toys
- Protecting puppies
- Not feeling well and wanting to be left alone.
Though these explanations offer insight into the reasons behind dogs’ aggressive behavior, none of them are sufficient defenses for dog owners in injury cases against their dog. Dog owners are nearly always 100% liable for their dog’s behavior regardless of the trigger or cause of it.
If you have suffered an injury due to a dog bite, you are likely entitled to compensation. Your rights guarantee you justice, and the lawyers at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm want to see you get what you deserve. Damages and compensation are to ensure that you are not further harmed by your accident. You have already suffered physical injury, but there is no reason you should also go on to suffer financially. The dog owner responsible for your injury must recompense you for the harm they (and their dog) caused you.
To learn more about how an Iowa dog bite lawyer can help you, give Pintas & Mullins Law Firm a call today at (800) 816-0755. We want to discuss your case with you and help you get justice for the harm you have suffered. We offer free, no-commitment consultations and take no payment upfront. We work on a contingency basis and are only paid once we win a settlement or verdict in your favor.