Dogs are widely considered to be “man’s best friend,” and anyone who's owned a dog knows how much love and joy they bring. Unfortunately, not every dog behaves as expected and there are times when dogs may bite, causing serious physical and emotional harm. When a dog bite occurs, it is important for the victim to understand their legal options.
Before anything else, victims should think about who was responsible for the attack. It only takes one irresponsible owner to cause an attack or bite.
Responsibility in a dog bite case often falls on the dog’s owner, dog walker, or potentially, a landlord.
For example, if someone was walking in a park and an unleashed dog attacks him or her, the owner of the dog should be legally responsible.
Similarly, if a dog attacks a guest on the owner’s property, it would be the owner’s responsibility.
Exceptions to this responsibility include:
- If the victim was trespassing
- If the victim was provoking the animal.
It's very important to speak to an attorney after a serious dog attack. Even if you think you provoked the dog, speaking to an attorney is free, and being informed of your rights as a victim will only help you.
In a dog attack lawsuit, some ways to prove responsibility could include:
- Proving that the owner knew the dog had a history of attacks and failed to provide proper restraints.
- That there was no fence preventing the dog from reaching the public.
In these types of cases, the injured victim may be able to seek compensation to cover all expenses associated with the injuries.
WHAT SHOULD YOU DO AFTER A DOG BITE?
After a dog bite, the victim should take certain steps to protect their potential personal injury claim. This includes gathering information about the dog and dog owner, such as names, physical appearances, and contact information.
Victims should call the proper authorities to report the incident, seek immediate medical treatment, and keep track of evidence regarding the attack. This includes taking pictures of the injury, the dog, any witnesses, and the location of the attack.
These actions can go a long way in helping the victim file a successful case against the dog owner.
We help protect the rights of dog bite victims nationwide. We have handled more than 10,000 injury cases during our 50+ years of collective experience. Our clients trust us to help them get through one of the most difficult times of their lives. We are here to serve you.
Contact our legal team today to get the representation you need and deserve every step of the way.