A dog bite can be a very traumatizing experience as well as a very painful one. If you or a loved one has been bitten, there are several steps you can take that can prove to be very helpful immediately, and later, especially if the bite is serious.
This list will help you to know how to prepare for any possible legal battle to recover any damages you sustain because of a dog bite attack. In Arizona, strict liability for dog bites lie with the dog’s owner when their pet injures someone. This Arizona Revised Statutes section 11-1025 points out that the owner is responsible even when the dog is not on its owner’s property when the attack occurs. You could encounter expensive medical bills, loss of work, and other potentially expensive elements in the aftermath of a dog bite. Being prepared is essential.
If you are bitten by a dog in Arizona, these steps could help you:
- Gather Information
Collect the contact information of the address, phone number and email address of its owner and of anyone else with the dog or who witnessed the attack.
If you cannot locate the dog’s owner, painful and costly rabies shots may need to be administered unless you can obtain a shot record for the dog.
- Get Medical Treatment
Naturally, if the attack was severe, contact emergency personnel for immediate medical attention or seek emergency care at a hospital. There is a risk of infection from any dog bite so seeking professional treatment is important.
- Report the Dog Bite
After you have been treated, contact the animal control authority in your area and report the dog bite. These documents will be helpful to any other victims who may encounter that same dog and be attacked. Filing these reports also help document your case.
- Contact an Attorney
Do not wait. Statutes on dog bites are narrow and there are many legal issues for an attorney to navigate. Your lawyer will be able to help you be sure to assemble all the facts and evidence that will help you succeed in your case.
- Take video or photographs of your injuries – take these from the beginning and throughout your treatment. Also, be sure to document any other damages sustained such as torn clothing. It is also helpful to have images of the place where the attack happened.
If you are recovering from a dog bite, do not wait until you are fully recovered to contact a personal injury attorney. You have one year from the date of your attack, according to Arizona’s dog bite statute, to file a lawsuit. This mistake often happens when the person bitten is a family friend or family member. No one is eager to seek damage relief from loved ones. However, if the bite is serious or you have other challenges arise that cause you financial hardship, or pain and suffering from the incident, you may NEED to file a dog bite injury lawsuit to recover your damages.
Even though you may file a claim against a pet owner’s homeowner’s insurance, insurance companies will not always automatically pay. Insurance companies employ seasoned attorneys who will work to pay as little as possible. Having legal representation to secure the highest compensation you are owed is extremely helpful, especially when working with an insurance company, and especially when the dog’s owners are friends, family members, or neighbors.
If you or a Loved One Has Been Bitten – Call US Today
If your dog has been involved in a dog bite incident or you have been bitten by someone’s dog, WELZAZ can help. West, Longenbaugh and Zickerman offers experienced personal injury attorneys who are available to help you and your family throughout Tucson. Our firm will make sure the person responsible for your injury is held liable and that you receive relief from the damages the injury caused. Time is of the essence. Don’t wait. contact our offices today for more information about your dog bite injury.