Dogs attack people more often than you may think. Every day, around 1,000 people in the United States will suffer a dog attack injury that requires emergency treatment. By the end of the year, more than 14,025 people spend time in hospital because of injuries caused by man’s best friend. Many more suffer injuries but don’t require emergency care or hospitalization.
If you’ve been bitten or otherwise harmed by a dog, these statistics may not bring you much comfort. However, you’ll be relieved to know that as dog attack injury attorneys in Maryland, we have the knowledge and skills to help you get compensation. While your family and friends may mean well, they probably don’t know the law. Following their advice could make it difficult or even impossible for you to recover damages from the owner of the dog. Your best bet is to contact a lawyer as soon as possible so you can protect your rights.
What Goes into Getting Compensation for a Dog Attack Injury?
You may assume you have to prove the dog owner was negligent in order to hold them responsible. However, this isn’t always the case. If the dog was running at large, the owner is liable under the law. This has been the case since 2014 when the legislation was changed. This is one of the things that attorneys are aware of which the average person may not know.
After you get bitten, the dog owner’s insurance company may pressure you to accept a payout quickly. However, this settlement is likely to be low and it may not fully cover your losses. Getting full compensation requires negotiation. Most victims aren’t capable of standing up to an insurance company, especially when they’re traumatized and struggling to recover. Dog bites and other attacks can result in both physical and mental damage. If your dog attack injuries are serious, you could have to spend lots of money on medical bills and take time off work.
You deserve compensation for all your medical expenses as well as your lost wages. You should never talk to an insurance adjuster, sign a statement, or accept a settlement without speaking to an attorney. Instead, you should take the time to quantify all your losses and ask for the correct amount. Otherwise, you could have to foot some of your bills on your own. If you don’t want to jeopardize your ability to claim fair compensation, you need to work with a Maryland dog attack injury lawyer. That being said, you can also help your case.
What You Should Do After a Dog Attack Injury
Only around a fifth of people who are bitten by dogs need medical attention. However, if the dog that attacked you does not belong to your household, you need to take extra precautions. It’s best to go to the doctor and get checked out as soon as possible. The doctor may recommend that you get antibiotics or a rabies shot depending on the circumstances. If you decide to file an insurance claim or lawsuit later, you’ll need a doctor’s report anyway. It’s always better to be on the safe side where injuries are concerned.
Getting medical attention should be your priority. However, you also need to call the police and animal control. If you know who owns the dog, you should also get their insurance details. Taking photos of your injuries, the dog, and the scene of the attack may also be helpful. The extent to which you can do this will depend on the severity of your injury. You should also contact an attorney promptly. They will advise you on what you should and should not do if you want to get compensation. Seemingly innocent things like discussing the attack on social media can hurt your case.
Even if your case seems straightforward, you may find it difficult to get compensation if you’re unrepresented. The owner may claim that you were trespassing or that you provoked the dog. If they can successfully argue that you were even partly at fault, you won’t be able to get compensation. There’s no substitute for having an experienced attorney with a solid reputation by your side.
Let Pinder Plotkin LLC Handle Your Case
Don’t delay in seeking legal advice and representation if you’ve been injured by a dog. Contact Pinder Plotkin LLC today and talk to one of our dog bite attorneys in Maryland. We’ll do everything we can to help you get the compensation you deserve. Call and schedule your free consultation today.