If you’ve been mauled, attacked, or bitten by a dog, you might have the legal right to compensation from the animal’s owner. An Oakland dog bite lawyer can help you understand your rights and the process for filing a claim.

Most dog bites happen with dogs that the bite victim is familiar with. They might belong to a family member, friend, or neighbor.

A dog that has never bitten anyone before might suddenly act aggressively. Dogs with a litter of puppies, those that are injured and in pain, or dogs that are frightened sometimes act out by attacking people they normally would never hurt. Fewer dog bites occur from strays that the person doesn’t know.

Do I Need An Oakland Dog Bite Attorney?

Being bitten by a dog can leave you confused and unsure of what to do. First, you need to seek medical attention for a bite that scrapes or punctures the skin. You can start with basic first aid at home, but you need to see a doctor immediately afterward.

The doctor can examine the area to see if muscles, tendons, bones, or nerves are damaged. The doctor will clean the area to aid in healing and prevent the risk of bacteria. Right after the bite occurs:

  • Place a clean towel over the injured area to stop any bleeding
  • Keep the bite area elevated if possible
  • Wash the bite with soap and water
  • Apply a sterile bandage to the wound
  • Apply antibiotic ointment daily

In California, both the dog’s owner and the bite victim must notify the County Department of Animal Services. The law also requires the animal to be quarantined for 10 days from the date of the bite.

The law applies to dogs that have received their rabies vaccine. However, the Department of Animal Services might permit the dog owner to quarantine the dog at home if it is the first reported minor bite on a person.  

The severity of your injury will determine the extent of your medical bills. Even a minor injury that requires stitches can be expensive. Dog attacks sometimes require repeated surgeries to repair the damage. Plastic surgery is sometimes required in severe cases. An Oakland dog bite lawyer can explain the laws to you and help you decide what to do.

How a Dog Bite Lawyer Can Help

Your dog bite attorney from Quirk Reed LLP will help you prepare your case so that you can receive compensation for your injuries. The most important thing he will do is prove that the injuries you sustained came from the dog’s bite. It is the dog’s owner who is liable for your injuries. It isn’t unusual for a dog’s owner to claim that the bite victim received their injury some other way.

Your Oakland dog bite attorney will collect evidence to disprove these accusations. Quirk Reed has years of practical experience representing victims of dog bites. We will take care of the legal aspects of your case so that you can focus on getting better.

Proving Your Dog Bite Case

The laws surrounding dog bites differ from state to state. California gives you two years from the time of the dog attack to file a claim.

Your attorney will work with you to prove your location at the time the attack occurred. If you were in a private setting, you must prove that you were there legally. Look for evidence of your relationship with the dog owner such as emails or letters. Without this evidence, the dog owner might set out to prove that you were a trespasser.

Getting Compensation for Your Injuries

Dog bites, attacks, and maulings are often traumatic events, with effects that last a long time. Your dog bite lawyer will explain the different types of damages that might apply to your case.

Some of the types of compensation you might qualify for include:

  • Current and future medical expenses
  • Pain & suffering
  • Lost wages
  • Emotional distress
  • Permanent disfigurement
  • Loss of enjoyment of life

One of the most terrifying things about a dog bite is the possibility of being infected with the rabies virus. If there is a risk that you received the rabies virus. Taking rabies vaccinations is both painful and expensive.

Dog Bite Statistics

California is the #1 state for dog bites, with 488 claims in 2017 coming in at $18.7 million. More frightening statistics include:

– About 1/3 of all homeowner’s liability insurance claims are related to dog bites

– According to information from the Insurance Information Institute, the average payout for those claims was $37,051

– Children account for more than 50% of all dog-bite victims

– The elderly also get bitten frequently by dogs

– In 2017, pit bulls were responsible for 74% of all fatal dog attacks across the U.S.

Dogs are an important part of our lives and members of our families. When a dog bites you, it can have a lasting impact on your life. You deserve compensation from your injuries and damages. You need a dog bite attorney who will help you get the most successful outcome for your dog bite claim.

Some dog bite victims fail to report a dog bite to prevent problems with the dog’s owner. If the dog belongs to a family member, co-worker, or even your boss, reporting the attack might seem like the wrong thing to do.

In most cases, the dog owner’s home insurance policy will cover dog bites. You have the option to get the compensation you need to heal.

Nothing is more important than getting the medical care you need for your dog bite. Make sure you follow the legal guidelines for filing a claim. Once the statute of limitations runs out, getting your day in court is a lot more challenging. Getting treatment early also helps reduce the risk that your injuries will continue getting worse.

If you’ve been the victim of a dog bite, attack, or mauling, contact Quirk Reed to speak with an experienced Oakland dog bite lawyer about your case. You have the right to compensation for your terrifying ordeal. We’re here to help you get the best possible outcome for your dog bite case.