Phoenix Dog Bite Lawyers
Legal Representation for Victims of Dog Bites and Animal Attacks
Dog attacks can cause devastating injuries in a matter of moments. Most victims never expected to be injured by an animal they see as a friend. Both children and adults alike can be harmed by a dog and carry both physical and emotional scars for many years afterward. Often, dog attacks are the result of careless owners who do not take the right steps to protect friends or strangers.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately 4.7 million dog bites occur annually. About 800,000 of these bites require medical attention. Half of these are children.
The highest rate of bites occur among children between 5 and 9 years old, and two-thirds of injuries among children who are younger than 4 years old are to the neck and head region. Boys are much more likely to experience bites than girls, and among adults, men are more likely than women to suffer injuries.
If you or your loved one has been harmed in a dog attack, do not hesitate to get in touch with the legal team at the Breyer Law Offices, P.C. Phoenix personal injury lawyers Mark and Alexis Breyer have helped numerous victims cope with their injuries and recover as much as physically possible, all by holding at-fault parties responsible for the incident. Get in touch with us and learn more about what we can do to help you.
Who Is Liable for My Dog Bite?
Arizona law (ARS-11-1025) states that dog owners are liable for any attacks and injuries caused by their pets. If you were bitten by a dog while in a public place or while lawfully on someone else's private property, you have the right to file a claim against that dog’s owner. Whether the dog attacked you on someone else's property, while being walked, or while roaming without its owner, the dog owner is the one responsible for the incident. However, the owner is not liable if you were trespassing, teasing or provoking the dog in some way, or acting aggressively toward the dog or its owner.
Statute of Limitations
There are two statutes of limitations in Arizona dog bite claims. First, when you don’t have to prove the dog owner knew the dog was prone to biting, you have one year to file a claim. Second, when you do have to prove that the dog owner knew his dog was vicious and prone to biting, you have two years to file a claim. This is why it’s wise to contact an experienced personal injury attorney as soon after a dog bite as possible. The attorney will assess your case, and determine which statute of limitation applies.
Third Party Liability in a Dog Bite Case
We often think of liability in a dog bite case as being straightforward - that the owner must pay - but our experienced legal team knows that these cases can get complex. One way includes a "third party," often involving workers’ compensation.
For instance, if a dog attacks a postal worker or a meter reader, workers’ compensation may kick in, offering a payout before the Phoenix personal injury case is resolved. However, the workers’ compensation office may put a lien on any award from the personal injury case. This kind of "stacking" in on-the-job bite injuries can get confusing, and without proper legal assistance, it can be hard for a victim to figure out whether he is getting all that he deserves. This is a situation where the representation of an experienced dog bite attorney is vital.
What Is the Cost of a Dog Attack?
While dogs are seen as "man's best friend," they are also dangerous. Even small dogs can cause serious injuries because of their sharp teeth. In the event that a large dog attacks, the injuries suffered can be catastrophic. Victims of dog attacks often suffer:
- Deep cuts and lacerations
- Muscle and tendon damage
- Broken and crushed bones
- Neck and spinal cord damage
- Blood loss
- Wound infections
Because of the violent nature of dog attacks, many victims can often suffer emotional and mental trauma, making recovery even more difficult.
What Kind of Compensation Can I Get in a Dog Attack Claim?
Basically, any losses or damages you suffered in the incident, and any future losses the attack will cause. This includes current and future medical bills, pain and suffering, scarring and disfigurement, permanent injury, lost wages, emotional trauma and the psychological treatment needed to recover, and much more.
Won’t the Owner’s Insurance Policy Take Care of All That?
Dog bite claims are usually covered under the owner’s homeowners insurance policy, but not always. Many homeowners policies only cover dog attacks on the owner’s property. Other policies don’t cover certain breeds, such as pit bulls or Rottweilers. And of course, many dog owners will not have insurance. Plus, trusting an insurance company to award you a sum that is worthy of your injuries is always a mistake. Insurance companies aren’t interested in your welfare - they are interested in making money. The lower the amount they get you to settle for, the more money they keep. Don’t talk to the owner’s insurance company. Instead…
Speak with a Phoenix Dog Bite Attorney at The Husband and Wife Law Team
Successfully pursuing compensation from the party responsible for your injuries can be a complex process, and you may underestimate the ultimate cost of those injuries. Finding the right attorney in Phoenix to represent you in your case is vital in gaining the compensation you need and deserve.
At Breyer Law Offices, P.C., our team of Phoenix dog bite attorneys know the serious effects of being attacked, and what it takes to physically and emotionally recover. Whether you or a loved one has been the victim of an animal attack, we can help you hold the at-fault parties responsible, so that you can receive the compensation you need. To learn more, call us today at (602) 267-1280 and receive a free evaluation of your case and the next steps you should take.
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