If you have been attacked by a dog, you may be wondering whether you can sue the dog’s owner. The answer depends on the circumstances of the attack and the laws in your area. In most states, dog owners are always liable for damages if their animal attacks someone, whether or not the dog had shown aggression before.
The severity of your injuries also plays a role in whether or not you can sue for a dog attack. If you suffered serious injuries such as broken bones or nerve damage, you may be able to file a personal injury lawsuit against the dog owner.
To learn more about your legal rights after a dog attack, you should speak to an experienced personal injury lawyer with Judd Shaw Injury Law. Do not wait to get the money you deserve. Instead, call 1-866-909-6894 or fill in our online contact form.
What Are the Laws Surrounding Dog Attacks?
In the United States, there are many laws that protect victims of dog attacks. For example, some states have a “one-bite” law that says that if a dog has never bitten anyone before, then the owner may not be held liable for damages. However, an owner who knew or should have known that the dog was dangerous and did not take reasonable steps to prevent an attack could be held liable.
Other state laws make dog owners strictly liable for any injuries their dog causes, regardless of whether or not they knew the dog was dangerous. In these areas, it does not matter whether the dog had a history of dangerous behavior. Neither does it matter whether the owner took precautions to prevent an attack – if the victim is injured by the dog, the owner can be held responsible.
For example, in New Jersey, if a dog attacks someone, the owner can be held liable. This means the owner could pay the victim’s medical expenses, lost wages, and other damages. A victim can also sue for punitive damages, which are meant to punish the dog owner and deter others from letting their dogs attack people.
In many states, you can sue if the dog owner knew or should have known that the dog was dangerous but failed to take proper precautions. For example, if the dog had bitten someone before but the owner failed to take steps to keep it away from other people, then he or she may be considered negligent.
How to File a Personal Injury Claim After a Dog Attack
Once you have been medically treated, gather as much evidence as possible about the attack. Evidence includes photos of your injuries, witness statements, and medical records. You may also need to file a police report.
To prove that the owner knew or should have known that the dog was dangerous, you will need to show that:
- The dog had a history of aggression or biting
- The owner was warned by someone that the dog might be aggressive
- The incident happened in a situation where it is reasonable to expect a dog to be aggressive
- The attack occurred in a place where there is no expectation of privacy (such as on a public sidewalk)
When a Security Dog Attacks Innocent Person
If the attack by a security dog happened while on public property, such as a park or sidewalk, you may have a case against the dog’s owner. To win damages, you will need to show that the owner failed to control the dog and that this negligence led to your injuries.
If the attack happened while you were on private property, such as at a friend’s house or in a store, you may still be able to sue the dog’s owner. However, if you were trespassing on the owner’s property or if you provoked the dog, you may not be able to recover damages from the owner.
Landowners are not automatically liable for injuries caused by their animals – even if they knew the animal was dangerous. You will need to prove that the landowner knew about the animal’s dangerous behavior and did nothing to stop it from attacking you. An experienced attorney can help you achieve this.
What Happens If an Aggressive Dog Attacks a Child?
Children are the most common victims of dog bites and make up for more than half of all reported cases. Most dog bites are not fatal but they can still cause serious injuries.
Some common dog attack injuries are:
- Puncture wounds
- Nerve damage
- Broken bones
- Emotional trauma
In addition to the physical pain and scars that may result from a dog bite, a child may also suffer from emotional trauma and anxiety. This can lead to sleeplessness, nightmares, and even post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). If your child has been the victim of a dog attack, it is vital to seek both medical and psychological help to ensure their full recovery.
PTSD can be a very debilitating condition with a lasting effect on a child’s life. If your child has been attacked by a dog, you will need to prove that the attack was so severe that it caused your child to develop PTSD.
You can build a case by providing medical records detailing the diagnosis and treatment. You will also need to show any damages as a result of your child’s PTSD, such as medical bills.
Adult Fatalities and Trauma After a Dog Attack
For many people, the idea of being attacked by a dog is terrifying. Unfortunately, this is a reality for many people across the country. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), approximately 4.5 million people are bitten by dogs each year in the United States. Of these bites, about 1 in 5 results in injuries that require medical attention.
Studies also show that, in 2020, the largest deficit of unreported dog attack deaths occurred among adults aged 65+ and older, followed by the 45-64 age group.
While any dog bite can be traumatic, some bites are more severe than others. If you or someone you love now suffers from PTSD, this diagnosis can be used as evidence in a personal injury claim against the owner of the dog that attacked you.
You will need to prove that the attack was so severe that it caused you to develop PTSD. This can be done by providing medical records detailing your diagnosis and treatment. You will also need to show that you have suffered damages as a result of your PTSD, such as lost wages or medical bills.
Judd Shaw Injury Law Can Help You After a Dog Attack
When you have been attacked by a dog and want to file a lawsuit, speak with the experienced dog bite lawyers of Judd Shaw Injury Law. We can review your case and help you understand your legal options.
The attorneys of Judd Shaw Injury Law have represented many victims of dog attacks. When you need help getting the compensation you deserve after your dog attack, you can rely on us to help you seek justice.
With our No Fee Guarantee® you will not pay us anything unless we receive a settlement on your behalf. Give us a call at 1-866-909-6894 or get in touch through our online contact form to learn more about how we can help you.