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There is no doubt that dogs are man’s best friend. However, that is not always the case. Dogs can become dangerous when out of control and can cause severe injuries through bites and scratches. Dog bites have become common in the country, which is the main reason why many people are keeping their dogs inside when home alone or keeping them under control when in public spaces.
In a recent report published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than four million dog bites occur in the United States every year. In this, about 800,000 bites result in severe injuries that demand immediate medical assistance [source].
Legal Proceedings in Case of Dog Bites
If you are involved in a severe dog attack resulting in severe injuries, you might be looking to institute a dog bite claim for necessary compensation. Having sufficient details and proving to the court that you deserve compensation for the injuries caused is your ground for a legal claim. Some of the possible compensations that you are likely to receive from the dog owner include:
- Medical expenses
- Pain and suffering compensation
- Replacement of income
- Mental anguish compensation
However, before receiving such benefits, you need to have sufficient details to satisfy the judge. Your civil compensation case will not proceed, and you might be forced to pay your medical expenses.
Proving Civil Liability and Negligence
In any civil case whereby you have filed for compensation on a personal injury matter, the court requires you to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the other party involved in the case is specifically responsible for the injuries suffered. The court requires you to prove that the inactions or the actions of the dog owner were responsible for your injuries, and they should be held accountable for the pain and suffering.
For you to prove liability on the part of the dog owner, you need to have a comprehensive understanding of the state laws surrounding dog bites. Strict liability is a necessary aspect that you need to understand for your case to be successful. In some instances, you might fail to prove the aspect of specific liability. Laws permit you to proceed with the case if you can prove negligence on the part of the dog owner.
Understanding Recoverable Damages
The court requires you to be very specific on the recoverable damages you want to get from the dog owner after filing a dog bite lawsuit. Studies show that more than one billion dollars are spent on claims involving dog bites. Therefore, if you can prove liability or negligence on the dog owner’s part, there is a higher chance that you can recover financial benefits.
In most cases, you will mostly recover economic and non-economic financial compensation. For economic damages, you will possibly get concrete items such as lost wages, property damages, future medical treatment, and medical bills. For non-economic financial compensation, you’re likely to get loss of consortium, post-traumatic stress disorders, and loss of quality of life.
Although they are rarely awarded, you can also recover some financial benefits for punitive damages. These are financial charges that the dog owner will have to pay as a punishment for their fault or wanton behavior of not keeping their dog under control.
Get the Best Personal Injury Attorney
Filing a dog bite lawsuit is not a simple undertaking. Proving civil liability or negligence and filing for financial compensation is better left to the professionals. By having the best personal injury attorney, you will be able to argue your case before a judge and prove that the dog owner should be held liable for the injuries resulting from dog bites because of their actions or inactions.
Michelle Eddy is a staunch consumer advocate, fresh libertarian convert, a mother of three, and a part-time blogger. She covers topics from parenthood and child development to education and law. With a strong emphasis on consumer rights and helping the little guy stand up for their rights. Her favorite quote is “Sir, we are outnumbered 10 to 1.” “Then, it is a fair fight!”