Dog owners must be responsible for their dogs. When dog owners are not responsible and they allow their pets to attack people the owner should be held responsible for the harm their dogs cause.
Years ago it used to be the case that a dog got one free bite. You used to have to prove that a dog had a vicious propensity or a disposition to bite. That is no longer the case. All dog owners are held to what is called a strict liability standard. What strict liability means is that the owner of the dog that attacks is automatically responsible for all of the harms and losses caused by the dog.
Most think that this makes dog bite or dog mauling cases easy. This is not true because, as usual, insurance companies will argue that you or your child are not hurt as bad as what you claim. There are a number of things we have to prove to make sure you get compensated fully and fairly for the harms and losses caused by the offending dog and their owner.
First of all you have to prove that the dog is owned by somebody. This is not always as easy as it seems. We engage the services of private investigators to make sure that the owner of the dog is found quickly. We also go about putting the owner and their insurance company on notice immediately that there is a claim.
Next, we have to prove that the dog caused the injuries. This might seem self-explanatory but the services of an expert are often needed to determine the full extent of the injury. We have handled cases of adults and children that have been bitten. An expert plastic surgeon is sometimes needed to opine about how this specific bite caused these specific injuries. The expert will also testify about what is needed to physically repair the injury and the long-term physical effects of the injury.
We sometimes hire an expert psychologist or psychiatrist to prove the psychological harms, especially to a child. The psychological harm to a child is sometimes more damaging than the physical injury. If the psychological harms are not documented correctly and fully the insurance companies will argue that you are simply making up the psychological harm to get more money. We know that the psychological harms are real and the problem is proving it. That is why we work with professional counselors to make sure this part of the claim is not overlooked.
Dog bites and dog mauling cases have a wide range of severity. They can range from simple scratches or puncture wounds to deep lacerations and crushing bone fractures. Often common in a number of dog attack cases is the issue of infection. Contrary to popular belief the mouths of dogs are full of bacteria.
If you need help in your dog bite or dog mauling case we are ready to provide you the assistance you need. Remember – there is never any fee until we get money for you. Call us for a free consultation at 801-487-6454 or toll free at 800-953-4811. You can also fill out the e-mail form and I will contact you as soon as possible.