Dog attacks and dog bites can leave devastating scars and sometimes even result in severe injury or death. At The Law Office of Carl Maltese, our seasoned personal injury attorneys represent clients suffering from the impact of a dog bite injury as we seek to hold the animal’s owners liable for the full extent of the damages. Your odds of success increase with the aid of a Smithtown dog bite lawyer.
Possible Compensation After a Dog Bite
If you’ve been attacked by a dog, you may be entitled to compensatory damages. These damages are divided into two categories. General losses include non-monetary damages such as pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, loss of function, mental distress, and disfigurement. Special losses are those with an actual monetary price tag, including but not limited to lost wages and medical costs associated with the dog attack injuries. The judge may also award punitive damages in rare cases in which the dog owner acted maliciously, on purpose, or with extreme disregard for the safety of others. A Smithtown dog bite attorney could further explain the available damages.
What You Need to Know After a Dog Attack
In many cases, the owner responsible for a dog bite will have an insurance policy that covers this type of incident. In the case of a dog bite, like in many other injury cases, the insurance company does not prioritize being fair to the injury victim. Instead, insurance company representatives may lead you to make statements that indicate shared responsibility in the incident.
To recover certain types of compensation in New York, you must prove that the dog owner was aware that the animal had “vicious propensities.” This does not necessarily mean that the dog bit someone previously. Growling and barking can indicate vicious propensities. Depending upon the circumstances of your injury, people in addition to the dog owner may be liable. These third parties can include property owners, lessees, and others who walk or take care of the dog.
How Insurance Companies Respond
Defendants and insurance companies often claim that the dog never displayed vicious behavior in the past and that they are not responsible for the dog’s “first bite.” They may also try to show that you provoked the dog so that you are liable for your own injuries. A dog bite lawyer in Smithtown could fight back against these claims by showing evidence that the dog was known to have vicious propensities and that an attack or bite was foreseeable by the owner.
Defendants and their insurance companies will want to minimize your claims for pain, suffering, and injuries and damages so that they can avoid liability. It is in your best interest to retain a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. We will immediately initiate a comprehensive investigation of the dog attack or bite incident. We will take photographs of your injuries before they are healed, obtain any police reports made, talk to anyone who saw the attack or dog bite, and conduct a search of municipal records for other vicious attacks by the dog.
Call a Smithtown Dog Bite Attorney
We’ve been representing personal injury victims since 1966, with proven results. Our firm offers a free, no-obligation consultation so that we can learn about your case and advise you about your legal options for seeking recovery against those who may be responsible. When a Smithtown dog bite lawyer learns about your injuries, we can explain who may be liable and how we can work to advance your case with the goal of justice for the full extent of the damages that you have suffered.
We handle cases for injuries or wrongful death from dog attacks on a contingency fee basis. This means that you will not owe us any fees unless and until we achieve a settlement or a verdict at trial on your behalf. If there is no recovery, you will not owe a fee.