Ordinarily dogs and human beings get along very well. However, there are thousands of documented incidents of dog bites every year that require medical treatment. Most of the dog bite victims are children.
Although most dogs never intend to inflict serious injury on humans, it inevitably happens and for a variety of reasons. A dog bite is most likely to occur in the following situations:
- a dog who fears for his own safety;
- a dog who is acting to protect his owner’s territory;
- a dog who feels threatened and sees no alternative;
- a dog who is trying to establish dominance over another dog or individual.
According to the law, the dog owner is legally responsible for their dog’s actions. Most claims are made against the dog owner’s homeowner’s insurance policy. A qualified and competent attorney will make sure that you are fully compensated for your injuries.
If you are involved in a dog bite incident, you should know your rights. You may be entititled to compensation for medical bills, psychological counseling, loss of earnings, pain and suffering, and/or disfigurement.
To obtain compensation for a dog bite victim in the state of Washington, an attorney must prove many elements including:
- The identity of the owner of the dog;
- That the dog bit the victim;
- That the bite caused injury, suffering, or harm;
- That the attack was not excused.
Do I need an attorney to handle my dog bite claim?
To maximize your settlement in a dog bite case, it is essential that you retain, as soon as possible after the attack, an experienced attorney who has the ability to:
- Evaluate the credibility and gather testimony from the victim, dog owner, and witnesses in a form that can be used as evidence in a courtroom.
- Measure the lifelong effects of physical injuries, the cost of future medical care, and prove such costs to the insurance company attorneys.
- Measure the lifelong psychological impact of disfiguring injuries
- Determine the insurance company’s position relative to the dog bite attack
- Was the dog provoked?
- Has the dog ever bitten anyone else?
- Are there loopholes in the dog owner’s insurance policy?
Even if you are able to educate yourself about dog bite claims, you still would not be able to receive a fair settlement without an attorney. The insurance company may offer you some money, but nothing like the compensation you are legally entitled to receive. An attorney will maximize your compensation for your injuries. Insurance companies never pay maximum legal compensation to dog bites victims who are not represented by an attorney.
John Rothschild provides free, no obligation consultations by phone or email for dog bite injuries in the Seattle area. Dog bite victims are represented on a contingent fee basis. Simply stated, Mr. Rothschild receives no attorney’s fees unless he recovers money for you.