ABOUT DOG BITES
If you are bitten by a dog on someone’s property, you likely have a claim that can be made against the owner or the renter of the home or apartment where you were bitten. This is an area of law called “strict liability” and it means the dog’s owner is held strictly liable for the damage the dog causes you.
When you work with a Tacoma dog bite lawyer, you could fight to hold the dog owner accountable and collect the monetary damages you need to get your life back on track. Our skilled injury lawyers will take charge of your case at every stage and fight for the justice you deserve.
COMMON CAUSES OF DOG BITES
There are several factors that increase the likelihood that a dog will bite a person:
- The breed of the dog
- The training is given by an owner
- Situations that make a dog stressed, wary, or upset
A dog’s breed can increase the likelihood that the dog will bite, though it is not the only determining factor. Certain dogs have been bred to be more aggressive. The most common breeds that attack people are:
- German Shepherds
MONETARY DAMAGES IN DOG BITE CASES
After being attacked by a dog, you may be wondering what you are allowed to recover legally. The law is very clear about the damages that are available to you. They are:
- Past medical bills
- Future medical bills
- Pain and suffering
- Out of pocket expenses
- Loss of consortium
The Jackman Law Firm has successfully negotiated with many insurance companies for homeowners and businesses for money for these various damages. While we always hope that we can resolve things amicably outside of court, if we cannot, then we will take your case to court and obtain a jury verdict for your injuries. Our dog bite lawyers in Tacoma could help in all these areas.
HANDLING INSURANCE CLAIMS AFTER A DOG BITE
Most insurance companies offer dog bite coverage to homeowners, which can be used following an attack. There are some other ways dog bites can be covered by insurance, so it is important to thoroughly review your insurance policy if you are a dog owner.
Even if the owner has insurance that covers their dog, that does not mean that the insurance company will automatically approve a claim.
They will take a number of factors into account when reviewing the claim to determine if compensation is warranted. A homeowner is not responsible for what happens on their property if the dog is not theirs. The liability is squarely on the dog owner. If the dog owner is the homeowner, they may have insurance that covers dog bites. The homeowner will be liable for not only physical pain and suffering but emotional and mental trauma sustained because of the attack.
All of this might sound complicated, but one of our knowledgeable Tacoma lawyers could assess the situation and the relevant insurance coverage to explain liability and determine the available compensation. Give us a call today to begin working on your case.
Dog Owner Liability
The law puts the responsibility on the dog owner if their dog bites someone. There are only two exceptions to this rule:
- If a person is trespassing on the property where the dog lives, the owner is not responsible for the attack.
- If a police dog bites someone while working, the dog owner is not liable for the bite and injuries sustained.
With state laws generally favoring the victim of a dog bite, you need to understand the law, especially if you have a dog.
For a free legal consultation with a dog bites lawyer serving Tacoma, call 206-558-5555
Landlord Liability for Dog Bite
Landlords are not responsible for the dogs of their tenants. The only times when a landlord can be held liable for a bite are if the landlord is also the dog owner or if the landlord is either the keeper of the dog. However, the renter of the home or apartment might have a renter’s insurance policy that will cover your medical bills and pain and suffering.
POTENTIAL INJURIES FROM DOG BITES
As the main perpetrator of animal bites in the US, dog bites are not uncommon. Many owners ignore bites that don’t break the skin or simply clean bites that are not deep. However, any dog bite can pose serious health risks, particularly if the animal has not received a regular rabies vaccination. Anyone bitten by a dog should seek medical attention immediately and, afterward, speak with an animal attack lawyer in Tacoma about starting a case.
It is estimated that 18% of these bites will get infected, which is why regular cleaning and monitoring of the wound is important, regardless of the severity. The deeper the bite, the greater the risk of infection. These bites should always be treated by a medical professional and may require antibiotics to properly heal. Scarring is also likely for these wounds.
The most serious kind of infection that could occur because of a dog bite is MRSA. If MRSA spreads to your lungs or bloodstream, it could be fatal.
A dog’s mouth has more than 60 varieties of bacteria. Most of these pose no threat to humans, but a few do and can cause infection or illness. If a dog has been infected by something more serious, you are at a much greater risk of a serious illness. Other common transmitted diseases from a dog bite are:
Compartment Syndrome is caused when pressure builds up from internal bleeding or swelling in the tissues of your body. The pressure decreases blood flow. You will know you have it if you have bad pain, a feeling of pins and needles, and a general feeling of weakness. It is a very serious condition.