Dog bite injuries are very common, and both adults and children can be the victims of an animal attack. Not only can a dog bite injury can be quite expensive because of medical bills and time lost from work, it can also cause emotional suffering as well as physical pain.
If you’ve been bitten by someone’s dog, the owner may be legally and financially responsible for their dog’s actions. The personal injury lawyers at Hinton & Powell are located in Buckhead in Atlanta, Georgia. We can help you determine your legal options if you’ve been bitten by a dog.
Every state has different laws regarding dog bite injuries, but most agree on a few key aspects when it comes to liability.
Most states use the “one-bite rule”, which limits liability if an owner did not know their dog had a tendency to bite. The rule is named after the fact that the state looks forgivingly on the owner if this is the first time their dog has bitten someone.
While all dog owners are responsible for keeping their pet on a leash, owners that know their dogs are prone to biting must take precautions to prevent them from doing so.
This includes keeping their pet under control even when they’re not at home, using restrictive gear like a muzzle, and warning people verbally or with signs.
However, if the injured person provoked the dog, knew the dog was aggressive and acted carelessly, or was breaking the law at the time, the dog owner may not be found legally responsible.
Additionally, parents should keep an eye on their children when around strange dogs. Should a dog bite injury occur, a parent’s level of attention to their child may be brought into question.
Whether you decide to take legal action or not after a dog bite injury, you should always be sure to:
If you decide to pursue legal action, you will have the name of the person you’re trying to hold responsible, and you’ll have proof through medical records, witnesses who can be asked to testify, and statements you made to animal control.
It’s also important to report the incident to see if the animal has been vaccinated for rabies. If the owner doesn’t have proof of vaccination, the dog will have to be quarantined for a short period of time, and you may have to undergo painful rabies treatments.
If you have been bitten by a dog and experienced emotional stress, incurred medical bills, or have lost time from work as a result, then you may have a legal case against the owner.
Contact Hinton & Powell online or call 404-365-7077 for more information today.
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