Do I Need a Lawyer for a Dog Bite?
Legally, you don’t need a lawyer for a dog bite case. You may not even want a lawyer if the dog just nipped you. However, a lawyer will be beneficial if you experienced a vicious attack from a dog and suffered severe injuries.
A dog bite lawyer from Meldon Law is a smart choice to help you fight for the compensation you need. After all, the liable insurance company will have lawyers to contest your claim. Why not have a lawyer on your side?
A Dog Bite Attorney Can Identify the Liable Party in Your Case
You must prove many things to secure fair compensation in a dog bite case. This is one of several reasons why it can be a good idea to work with a personal injury attorney on your insurance claim. Meldon Law can perform a thorough investigation on your behalf and gather evidence to support your case.
A key part of winning your case involves learning who is liable for your losses. Liability could depend on:
- The owner of the dog
- Where the dog attack happened
- Whether the dog bite took place on public or private property
- Whether you were on the property legally
- If the dog has a history of biting or other aggression
- How the dog bite accident happened
- Whether this was the first time you encountered this dog
- Whether the dog owner posted “Bad Dog” signs, warning visitors of the risk of harm from the dog
- The injuries you sustained and the medical care you required
Many states require a dog bite victim to prove that the dog had previously bitten someone or shown aggressive behavior. Florida does not have a one-bite rule. It operates on a strict liability system. If a dog bites someone, the dog owner is liable for the harm caused by the animal, whether the dog has a history of viciousness or not, according to Florida Statutes § 767.04.
An Attorney Can Protect You From Unfair Allegations of Fault in a Dog Bite Case
The dog’s owner may do everything possible to blame you for what happened. They likely know that under Florida law, if the injured person taunted the dog, they can’t seek financial recovery.
These factors could play a role in your claim:
- When the dog owner posts a “Beware of Dog” or “Bad Dog” sign, people entering the property are on notice that there is a risk of getting hurt by the animal.
- When a dog is defending someone, the dog bite victim might be out of luck for their losses. A dog is just doing its job of protecting its owner or someone else when defending them.
- If the injured person got bitten when trespassing, they usually do not have a valid claim for compensation from the owner. They must have been on the property legally to recover their financial burdens after a dog bite.
Young children typically are not subject to these defenses because Florida law does not consider them mature enough to read and understand “Beware of Dog” signs or the consequences of encountering a dangerous dog. If the other party tries blaming you for what happened, our legal team can use your case’s evidence to assert otherwise.
Your Injury Attorney Can Fight to Recover These Damages After a Dog Attack
Compensation should account for more than your economic damages following a dog bite. You deserve compensation for each way the incident has affected your life, both now and in the future. Your personal injury attorney can fight for a settlement or court award that offers coverage for:
- Medical expenses, including skin grafts, antibiotics, and stitches
- Lost income, tips, bonuses, and benefits
- Loss of future earning capacity
- Pain and suffering and inconvenience
- Scarring and disfigurement
- Emotional distress, mental anguish, and other psychological trauma
- The cost of any out-of-pocket expenses, such as childcare costs
- Punitive damages (if applicable)
If you lost a loved one to a dog bite, you have our deepest, most sincere condolences. In that instance, our wrongful death lawyers can seek maximum compensation for your loved one’s end-of-life care costs, loss of income, loss of consortium, and pre-death pain and suffering.
Our Law Firm Has a Short Time to File Your Dog Bite Injury Lawsuit
You used to have more time to file a civil lawsuit seeking financial compensation after a dog bite. Yet, thanks to a recent change in the law, Florida only grants two years to file a personal injury lawsuit. This filing deadline is called the statute of limitations, outlined in Florida Statutes § 95.11.
If you miss the statute of limitations, the law can forever bar you from seeking fair compensation for your injuries. When you work with a dog bite lawyer on your personal injury claim, you do not have to worry about learning the statute of limitations or dozens of other procedural rules. We file your case within the appropriate deadline, granted we learn about it promptly.
You Could Benefit From Hiring a Personal Injury Lawyer
Dog bite attack cases are tricky. You could find it in your best interests to hire a lawyer to handle your claim––and what better choice than Meldon Law? We have decades of legal experience to channel into your case. We’ve handled dog bite cases involving all types of dogs, from Chihuahuas to pit bulls. Many resulted in positive outcomes for our clients.
We handle these cases on a contingency-fee basis, which means that you will not have to pay any upfront legal fees. If you do not win compensation, you do not owe any attorney’s fees. There is no financial risk in partnering with us.
You can talk to an experienced lawyer at Meldon Law about your case today. We offer a free consultation with no obligation. Call (352) 373-8000 to begin.