If you’ve found your way to this page, you’re probably suffering from a dog bite injury. You are most likely in a lot of pain from the attack, you might be worried about your finances, and we wouldn’t be surprised if you were struggling to return to your life as it was before the attack. Contact an experienced New York City dog bite lawyer from the Law Offices of Brian Elbaum today to schedule your initial consultation with our firm.
On the Receiving End of a Dog Bite? Our New York City Lawyer is Here.
Dog bites in New York State happen far more frequently than you might think. Experienced New York City dog bite lawyer Brian Elbaum is highly experienced in handling these cases because of this sad fact. As many as 750,000 people in the United States need medical attention because they were attacked by a dog. And in some most unfortunate cases, people can lose their lives due to their injuries. If you were hurt, you need a New York City personal injury attorney in your corner.
Liable Party in a Dog Bite Case
At some point, everyone who comes to this page has the same questions. Do I have a dog bite claim? Who is liable for this dog bite?
If you were seriously injured by a dog, you very well may have a case. Depending on the circumstances, you will have a case against the dog owner if they were negligent (acted in a way that let this incident happen or did not take preventative measures). This will vary from case to case, but typically the liability falls on the owner of the dog.
Let’s say, for instance, you were walking down the street and all of a sudden, a dog comes bounding out of a house and attacks you. Perhaps the owner of this dog did not have their front door closed or their fence locked, and their dog got out. This would be where that owner was acting negligently.
You may be worried if you noticed a “BEWARE OF DOG” sign placed on this person’s property. It is understandable that you might be concerned that this would affect your ability to bring a claim, however, this type of sign does not hold any weight of significance if this dog owner did not take measures to prevent their dog from attacking. A sign like that is not going to mean much if you were an innocent passerby that was severely hurt because someone else was being careless.
Understanding the “One Bite” Rule
There are certain complications that you must be aware of when dealing, in particular, with dog bite claims. There is something called the “One Bite Rule” that may have a significant impact on your ability to bring a claim. In New York, a dog essentially gets one bite that does not have consequences for its owner. If they were to do it again, then there would be recourse. It can seem very discouraging if you think you fall under the limitations of this rule, but it is not the end of your rope.
This rule exists to protect dogs who have never attacked and have never shown a propensity to be violent in the past. You may still have a case if you can prove that the owner of the dog knew they had an inclination to be vicious.
An experienced New York City dog bite lawyer will be able to uncover any past instances and gather pertinent information. They will talk to anyone who might know anything about this dog including mailmen, delivery personnel, and neighbors. They will be able to determine the behavior of this dog and if there was any indication that it might be vicious. That “BEWARE OF DOG” sign may even be to your benefit. It could prove that the owner knew the dog could attack. If you can prove these things, and you can prove the negligence of the dog owner, you may absolutely be able to bring a claim.
Steps for Bringing a Claim
The very first thing that you need to do after you have been attacked is call 911. Whether or not you were hurt, getting the police on the scene to put the event on record can only be of benefit to you. You should try to document the scene as well. Ask the owner questions such as:
- Is the dog up to date on its vaccinations?
- Has the dog ever bitten anyone before?
- Is the dog rabid?
Making sure that the dog did not cause a major threat of infection is extremely important. If there is a risk of rabies, you need to let a medical professional know this right away. If you cannot take yourself to the emergency room because you’re so injured, have someone call an ambulance. If you are able to get up and walk away from the scene, you still need to make sure you go to some type of medical center. It can be an urgent center or a visit to your primary physician. The injuries from a dog bite can be severe, including:
- Lacerations, or cuts
- Nerve damage
- Tears in muscles or tendons
- Blood loss
- Possible infection
- Scarring and disfigurement
Getting treatment as soon as possible is essential to not only your health but your case down the road.
Contact an NYC Dog Bite Attorney Today
An experienced New York City dog bite lawyer should be reached as soon as possible so they can begin to gather vital information for your case. Contact the Law Offices of Brian J. Elbaum for a free consultation to learn more about how we can get you full and fair compensation for your injuries.