After a dog bite, the chances of one sustaining serious injuries are higher. For this reason, taking measures to ensure you get medical help and seek justice is crucial. States have laws dictating how to handle a dog bite injury lawsuit. Learning these laws and the steps to follow is therefore vital for first-timers. This guide explains the steps and everything to do to successfully handle a dog bite injury lawsuit.
Seek Medical Attention Immediately
After getting bitten by a dog, seeking proper medical attention should be the first step. With prompt medical attention and treatment, you avoid serious infections and injuries that may negatively impact your life as a victim. Unless vaccinated, dogs can carry serious infections, including rabies, which can be life-threatening. You also need to establish a link between the dog bite to your case, which is possible by getting a medical report.
Report on the Dog Bite Incident
After your medical checkup, report the dog bite incident to the police quickly. The earlier you report the case, the easier it will be to get justice. Call the police, report the incident, and notify the local animal control officers. After reporting the incident, looking for a dog attack attorney and dealing with the pet owner remains easy. The lawyer will help you understand the law and push the dog owner to take responsibility.
Look for and Hire an Attorney
Once you file a dog bite injury lawsuit, be ready to look for and work with an attorney. Like other personal injury cases, several variables in a dog bite injury lawsuit call for legal help. The right dog bite injury lawyer will take you through the legal process and ensure you avoid mistakes that might compromise your efforts. You also save time navigating the justice system with the right lawyer.
You need sustainable evidence to keep your dog bite lawsuit viable like any other case. For this reason, you need more than physical evidence to present to the court. Take pictures or videos of your injury and the dog, as this will serve as evidence in your case. Also, get a medical report from your doctor as proof of your injuries. Get witness information if there is any to add to your evidence before proceeding with the lawsuit.
Contact Your Insurance Provider
A homeowners’ insurance, business insurance, or renters’ insurance provider should get notified if the incident occurred in or near the premises. If you have evidence, a dog owner insurance provider will also take your case. By letting the insurance provider know about the forthcoming claim, getting compensated for the injuries remains possible. You can also get the best of your dog bite injury lawyer by engaging your insurer.
File Your Lawsuit
Filing a dog bite injury lawsuit can be a hectic process. Following protocols and the proper channels to effectively file your case is crucial. This also calls for legal guidance from your lawyer. You avoid common mistakes that might affect the court’s verdict by seeking help before filing your lawsuit. Also, ensure your case gets filed within the statute of limitation in the said state to increase success chances.
Consider Out-of-Court Settlement
While taking your dog bite injury case to trial is an option, the process can be hectic and the results disappointing. To achieve your objectives, be willing to take your case out of court. Consider settlement negotiation to expedite the case, get compensation, and handle other needs. Your lawyers should exercise their negotiation skills and ensure successful settlement and compensation.
Getting bitten by a dog can cause trauma besides possible serious injuries and infections. As a victim, you can file a compensation claim for the injuries and discomfort the incident caused. This first-timers’ guide should be helpful.