Dog bites are so prevalent in American society that they have become a national and public health concern. Each spring, “Dog Bite Awareness Week” is dedicated to educating people on the danger of dog bites and how to prevent them.
During “Dog Bite Awareness Week” 2020, the United States Postal Service (USPS) released statistics stating that in 2019 alone, dogs attacked and bit 5,803 postal workers. While that might seem shocking, it is only a fraction of the number of dog bites injuries that happen each year.
According to the American Veterinary Medical Association (AMVA), “In 2017 there were nearly 350,000 people treated at hospital emergency rooms for non-fatal dog-related injuries.” Of those, 10,600 were children age 2 and younger, the AMVA said. The statistics clearly show that dog bite injuries are not uncommon.
If you have suffered a dog bite, you probably know all too well how seriously devastating they can be. In fact, you might still be recovering or feeling so poor as a result that it is hard to think about legal research and lawsuits. You do not have to do it alone. Pintas & Mullins Law Firm wants to help. When you put your case in our hands, you have a team fighting for you.
If you have questions for a Kentucky dog bite lawyer, give Pintas & Mullins Law Firm a call today. Schedule a free consultation with us at (800) 816-0755. You might be eligible for justice and compensation, and we want to help you get what you deserve. We do not charge a fee for handling your case unless we win for you. Call us today to learn more.
Strict Liability in Dog Bite Cases
Each state is different when it comes to winning a dog bite case. Kentucky has a statute that imposes “strict liability” on dog owners for their dog’s behavior and the damage the animal causes. “Strict liability” means an injured party can prove harm without proving how the harm occurred or why they should receive financial awards. In Kentucky, the threshold to prove a dog owner is liable for damages is low.
Kentucky Revised Statute (KRS) §258.235(4) states, “Any owner whose dog is found to have caused damage to a person, livestock, or other property shall be responsible for that damage.” A victim does not have to show that the attack was unprovoked, or the dog was known to be violent. Strict liability places the responsibility fully on the dog owner regardless of the circumstances.
Some strict liability states have exceptions to their rules. For example, dog owners are strictly liable for their dog unless it has a rabies infection. Kentucky, however, does not provide any exceptions to the strict liability law. A Kentucky dog bite lawyer can go into more depth with you on Kentucky negligence laws.
Recovery in Dog Bite Accidents
Kentucky dog bite victims can recover damages for financial expenses and non-financial losses in a dog bite lawsuit.
When severely injured in a dog bite accident, you are likely to incur many expenses from medical costs. Depending on the severity of your accident, you may have acquired bills for an emergency room visit, surgery, or a hospital stay. Even when dog bite victims are not immediately injured badly enough to go to the emergency room, the bacteria found in dogs’ mouths can be extremely dangerous and cause nearly deadly infections when left too long without treatment.
Whether you incurred medical expenses from surgeries, hospital visits, medication, physical therapy, doctor visits, or others, these are examples of economic damages that a financial award would reimburse.
Lost Work and Wages
In addition to compensation for medical expenses, Kentucky awards damages to compensate for other financial losses, such as losing wages from missed work. If your injury required medical treatment or surgery or was, in general, too severe to permit you to work during recovery, financial compensation could recover those lost wages.
If you must miss future work, those lost wages should also be covered. Dog bites can easily cause nerve damage that permanently or temporarily impacts one’s ability to move. It might be impossible to work if your injury has affected your functioning, like, for example, your ability to walk.
If you need physical therapy to regain normal function, the wages you lose during your recovery might be reimbursed, regardless of how long it takes to recover. If your child is injured and you must stay home with the child while they recover, your wages could be compensated.
Decreased Quality of Life
Other losses compensated in a financial award are those like pain and suffering or other struggles that have decreased your quality of life. Relearning how to walk or having plastic surgery for a disfiguring injury are examples of situations that could reduce one’s quality of life. Because the liable party can offer no other respite for this effect of your injury, these losses could be assigned a monetary value and included in a victim’s award.
If you are ready to pursue your legal options and hold the parties responsible for your dog bite injury, call Pintas & Mullins Law Firm today and schedule a free case evaluation with us. We can review the details of your situation and consider your next steps.
When to File a Lawsuit
If you want to file a personal injury lawsuit, you must do so within the statute of limitations, or the window of time in which they are valid. In Kentucky, the statute of limitations for dog bite injuries is one year. If you know you want to file a case, it might be a good idea to begin working on it as soon as is reasonably possible. If the statute of limitations expires and you have not filed your case, you risk having it dismissed.
If you would like to learn more about other state-specific rules for filing your dog bite lawsuit in Kentucky, a Kentucky dog bite lawyer can help.
Pintas & Mullins Law Firm wants to take care of your case and give you the time and energy you need to focus on your recovery. Call us today at (800) 816-0755 for a free consultation. We work on a contingency basis, so you pay nothing unless we win your case.