Annually nearly 800 000 people are bitten by dogs to the point that they need medical attention. Some of the most common dog bites are experienced by children and postal workers. Because dog bites are so common, there are many personal injury cases that are based on dog bites. As a result, this means that there are more opportunities for victims of dog bites to make a mistake that can negatively affect their legal rights. This article will discuss some of the mistakes to avoid if you have been injured in a dog bite attack.
In most cases dog bite incidents happen in the home of the dog owner. Most victims are family members, friends or neighbors. According to statistics dog bites represent the second largest reason for childhood injuries. Rottweiler and Pitbull breeds have the largest number of dog bite attacks as compared to other breeds of dog.
‘Dog bites make up about 25% of all homeowners insurance policy however, many homeowners insurance policies have stopped covering dog bites because of the potential expensive claims. Annually dog bite claim represent about 1 billion dollars in insurance settlements.’
While dog bite personal injury claims are commonplace there are also a number of mistakes that are commonly associated with dog bite injury victims. Some of these mistakes include the following:
- Failure to seek medical treatment immediately - some dog bite victims believe that the bite is not that serious. However, despite the seriousness of the bite and the injury, the victim cannot certainly determine whether or not the dog has rabies. In addition, a dog’s mouth contains bacteria that may cause serious infection and that can spread to other parts of the body. Therefore, it is imperative for a victim to seek medical attention; whereby medical staff will close the wound and clean it appropriately. To assist in your personal injury case, going to an emergency room immediately establishes the link between the dog bite and the injury and provides important documentation to support the claim.
- Failing to report the bite - some victims are so traumatized after a dog bite that they do not think to notify police or animal control. There are also some instances where the dog owner pleads with the victim not to report the incident to animal control or the police and promises to pay for all medical bills but refuses later. By alerting the authorities of the incident, it provides documentation supporting the claim. In addition, many jurisdictions have laws about dog bite injuries and statutory damages. Once the authorities have been contacted an investigation can be conducted in order to establish liability in the case.
- Providing a statement to an insurance company - insurance adjusters[https://www.investopedia.com/terms/a/adjuster.asp] are skilled at getting information from claimants so as to use this against them. As a result, insurance adjusters may state that they need a recorded statement only to use that to try and justify a denial for your claim.
- Failure to take photos of your initial injuries and during the healing process.
For legal advice and representation in dog bite personal injury matters speak to Anchorage lawyers