A dog bite is a horrible experience. It is traumatizing and at the the very least terrifying. The wounds sustained can be severe or life threatening. So many dog bite victims find themselves wondering if legal action can be taken against the owner of the dog, and the answer to this is yes. Legal action can be taken but it is not always necessary. A personal injury lawyer can review your case and offer legal guidance in how to go about this before you seriously consider pursuing a lawsuit against the owner.
Should You Take Legal Action?
The answer to this question is actually that it depends on your case. The settlement process for dog bite victims involves several time consuming steps. Although it is best to just contact a lawyer for legal advice, there are some general guidelines you can follow after being hurt by a dog. If you have been bitten by a dog, the first thing you need to do is to contact the dog’s owner. If you actually know the owner or if the owner was actually present during the accident, this should be an easy thing to do. However, if the attack happened when the owner was not present or out of the victim’s neighborhood, you should request assistance from your local police department to track down the owner. Once you reach out to the owner, you should write a letter that highlights the important facts that relate to your attack, like where it happened, what exactly happened, and why you feel as though the owner’s pet is at fault. You need to be specific in explaining what injuries you sustained and the damages that you want compensated. You could be awarded for hospital bills, possible lost wages, or even future medical expenses like therapy. You can offer a civil deadline that you would like the matter resolved by and a kind but firm warning stating that if the incident is not resolved by the specific date, you will be moving forward with your lawsuit.
What Happens Should You Need to Go to Court?
If the owner fails to reach out to you or acknowledge that you have contacted them, you will need to contact a personal injury lawyer trusts and go to court. Many dog bite cases are defaulted in small claims courts. However, if your injuries are severe and you want to seek more of a significant and substantial compensation, the case may be tried elsewhere.