New York Dog Bite Attorney
Dogs are usually friendly and welcoming animals. Whether you have your own family dog or you know a neighborhood dog, you know that most dogs enjoy the attention of people around them. Some owners train their dogs to serve as protection, however, leading to potentially dangerous situations for both people and dogs.
Dog bites can become extremely serious and can damage the victim’s life. Getting the right medical attention immediately after an injury is key to physical recovery.
But that medical attention will come at a great cost. Depending on the severity of the dog bite and the type of dog that caused the bite, you or your loved one could face astronomical medical expenses. Partnering with a New York dog bite lawyer, you can give your legal claim the attention it deserves. You should not have to bear the burden of covering your medical expenses. Your lawyer can help you by attempting to collect maximum compensation for your dog bite injuries. Contact us at Jacoby & Meyers LLP today to see what we can do for you.
Not all dogs are inherently dangerous. Some docile dogs may be provoked into becoming dangerous in certain situations. New York law only considers a dog inherently dangerous if the dog has previously attacked a human or killed another animal. If a dog bite victim provoked the attack, the dog may not be labeled dangerous. Police dogs are also exempt from this law.
Many states have a one-bite law. In these states, if a dog bites a person, the dog is put down.
New York’s law is a bit of a hybrid, providing for dog owner liability for a victim’s medical bills. A dog owner is only liable for additional damages if the dog owner knew or should have known the dog had a propensity for violence.
This legal distinction is a grey area, but it should not deter you from seeing if you can file a claim against the dog owner. Your lawyer can help guide you through the complex legal process and work to recover every dollar you deserve. That may include compensation above and beyond just your medical bills. Contact Jacoby & Meyers LLP for more information.
Table of Contents
Each year in the United States, there are over 4.5 million dog bites. This leads to nearly one million hospitalizations.
These dog bites happen for many different reasons. Usually, a dog bites someone when they feel attacked or when they find themselves in a stressful situation. Most dogs know that their bites can hurt when you play with them. If your hand or fingers go into the dog’s mouth when you are wrestling with a toy, the moment you show that the dog is hurting you, most dogs release their bites. They have no intention of hurting you and are just trying to play.
But sometimes a dog bite bites intentionally.
This often happens when a dog is:
You should avoid a dog that is showing signs of illness. Just like humans are easily frustrated when not feeling well, the same is true of dogs. Whether you notice excessive drooling, difficulty breathing, or a change in the dog’s personality, keeping your loved ones and yourself away from the animal until they can see a doctor is the prudent decision.
If a dog were to attack you, you may put up defenses. This may include shielding your face with your hands or forearms. You may fall to the ground. You may even strike the dog to get it to release you.
No matter what action you took, if you suffered a dog bite, you could face certain injuries, including:
- Puncture wounds
- Eye injuries
- Face injuries
- Broken bones
- Nerve damage
- Head and neck injuries
- Emotional scars
Every dog attack is unique. Your injuries may be different than another victim of a dog bite. But these are the most common results when a dog attacks a human. Each of these injuries may prevent you from living your regular life. You may not want to attend social events or even go to work. Pile that stress on top of the fact that you have medical bills to cover, and you may quickly find yourself in financial hardship.
Working with an experienced New York dog bite attorney can be the answer you seek. Your legal advisor can help you understand what comes next, how you recover from your injuries, and how you can collect compensation so you do not have to pay out of your own pocket for your medical bills and other financial losses.
Suffering a dog bite can leave you with a minor wound, a serious medical emergency, or anything in between. Depending on where the dog bit you and how serious the wound is, you may take different actions.
In most situations, follow these steps after a New York dog bite.
- Seek medical attention. After a dog attacks you, do not try to chase the dog. That may only provoke them further. You need to first worry about yourself, and that starts by getting immediate medical attention and calling 911. Emergency medical personnel will come to the scene and treat your wounds. If you have more serious injuries, they will safely transport you to the hospital for further evaluation and treatment. Getting immediate treatment for your injuries is vital to your physical recovery.
- Take pictures. Pictures are invaluable. If you can, get a picture of the dog, but make sure you are safe. Also, get pictures of your injuries as well as the surrounding area. Take pictures or video of any property markings and note any house or building addresses.
- Call animal control. Especially if you do not know the dog, calling animal control will alert them to the presence of a potentially dangerous animal. They will want to catch the dog and determine if it has rabies.
- Speak with the dog owner. If the dog owner was present during the attack, you will want to speak with them to find out if the dog has been vaccinated for rabies. If not, you may need to undergo rabies vaccinations to help make sure you are safe and healthy.
- File a police report. When you call 911 to get emergency medical assistance, the police will also arrive. They will create a police report. While their report may not assign fault, the report can provide objective and detailed information about the dog attack. This could be extremely useful for your lawyer.
- Contact a lawyer. To help you recover financially from your dog bite injuries, a knowledgeable dog bite attorney in New York can help you. Seeking compensation from the dog owner can help you cover your medical expenses.
It might seem obvious that the dog owner is responsible for the attack and your injuries, but it is not always that clear.
Besides the dog’s owner, other responsible parties could include:
- The property owner
- The landlord
- The person responsible for watching the dog
A dog bite can traumatize you. The last thing on your mind might be suing someone. But to receive the compensation necessary to cover your medical expenses, you need to determine who is to blame. That is where the experience of a New York dog bite lawyer can help you.
Your lawyer can review your case, look over the details of the attack, and speak with other parties involved—including anyone who might have witnessed the dog attack you. Your lawyer may also determine that more than one party is to blame. This is entirely possible and happens often. In fact, claiming that more than one party is responsible for your dog bite could help to maximize the amount of money you can recover.
Your lawyer’s goal is to hold the negligent party liable for the dog attack and your injuries to make sure that you have every opportunity to make a complete physical recovery. This often requires great sums of money to ensure you get the medical treatment you need and deserve. By working to collect compensation from the at-fault party, your lawyer helps you get back to your regular life and put this traumatic experience behind you.
To attempt the collection of compensation from the dog owner, you must file a claim for damages. In your claim, you would allege that the dog owner was negligent in some manner and that negligence resulted in your injuries. This might sound simple, but dog bite claims can be complex and require the keen eye of an experienced legal advisor.
Your lawyer may attempt to get you compensation for:
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Lost wages
- Lost earning potential
- Loss of companionship
- Loss of life enjoyment
- Present and future medical bills
- Rehabilitation costs
What many dog bite victims fail to realize is that the vast majority of their medical expenses may come in the future. Right now, you see your medical bills piling up and may assume that is the amount of money you can recover from the dog’s owner. Unfortunately, if that is all you try to collect, that could leave you in financial peril as you accrue more and more expensive medical bills and costs from your injury.
The severity and location of your dog bite may prevent you from returning to work for a long time. You might never return in the same capacity as before your dog bite. This could leave you struggling financially through no fault of your own.
To make sure you get every dollar you deserve, your lawyer can work with medical experts to determine how much more your physical recovery will cost. That would also give your lawyer a better idea of how much longer you will be out of work. You would want to try to collect your lost wages from the dog’s owner so you do not have to struggle to pay even your regular bills, let alone your medical expenses.
The best way to avoid a situation where you have to pay out of pocket is to work with a trusted New York dog bite lawyer. Your lawyer will fight to protect your rights and help you recover maximum compensation for your injuries. Contact Jacoby & Meyers LLP without delay.
When you file a claim, the claim is most likely going to be handled by the dog owner’s insurance company. That insurance company may even contact you before you file a claim, pressuring you to take their initial settlement and to not get any lawyers involved.
For many dog attack victims, this is appealing. You want to put this tragic experience behind you and taking a quick settlement can help achieve that goal. Unfortunately, the insurance company would not tell you if their initial settlement offer is not their best offer. In fact, the initial offer can be a lowball offer intended to make you go away for as little money as possible. The insurance company may only care about one thing: their profits. They would not care if you get less money than you deserve. In fact, that may be their goal.
If you have received a settlement offer from an insurance company and you do not yet have a lawyer, now is the time to get one. Signing the settlement offer might seem like a good idea in the moment, but it could leave you footing the bill for your future medical needs. When you sign a settlement agreement, you waive your right to bring any future claims against the insurance company for your dog bite attack. Months later, when you realize the settlement funds have run out but you still have more medical bills to pay, it will be too late. You will have no recourse.
Avoiding this situation is your lawyer’s goal. That is why it can be vital to the success of your claim that you speak with a dog bite lawyer in New York as soon as possible after your accident. Your lawyer would have your best interests at heart and would have the skill to help protect your rights. Contact Jacoby & Meyers LLP for a consultation.
Suffering a dog bite can be a traumatic experience that leaves you with more than just physical harm. Being attacked by a dog, whether it is a dog you know or not, can leave you with emotional scars and trauma that can be difficult to overcome.
When you have injuries from a dog bite, both physical and emotional, you may not know what comes next. You have lots of questions about how you overcome your injuries and avoid paying out of pocket for your medical expenses and financial losses related to your dog bite.
Partnering with the right dog bite lawyer can give you peace of mind that your future is in good hands. Your lawyer can also answer any of your questions, beyond those answered below. Every case is different, so your questions might differ. Speak with a lawyer today who can give you specific guidance about what comes next in your dog bite case.
Do I need to see a doctor after a dog bite in New York?
Yes. Dogs have bacteria in their mouth that can harm humans. Even a vaccinated dog can transmit bacteria to a human through a bite.
Your most important goal is to make sure you are healthy and well. To do that, you need to see a doctor right away. If you do not see a doctor and you develop medical complications later on, it can be more difficult to treat your wound properly. This could also lead to long-term damage.
What legal options do I have after suffering a dog bite in New York?
When you are the victim of a dog attack, you may not know what your legal options are for holding someone accountable. These options can depend on whether you know who owns the dog. If you do not know who the dog owner is, that can make it more challenging to bring a claim. If animal control catches the dog, they may determine who the owner is and you can bring a claim against them.
Once you know the identity of the dog owner, you can work with your lawyer to bring a claim for damages against the dog owner. If the dog was not on a leash or not properly secured, the owner could be liable for your injuries. If the owner knew or should have known the dog was dangerous, they may also be liable.
The goal of holding the dog owner liable for the actions of their dog through a claim allows you the chance to collect maximum compensation for your injuries. The last thing you want at a time like this is to have to pay out of pocket for your recovery.
But I know the dog’s owner and do not want to sue them. Now what?
You probably know several people with dogs. You may even have a dog yourself and you get together for doggie play dates. And if a friend’s dog attacks you, you may not want to file a claim against them. They are your friend, after all.
You need to try to remove the personal attachment and realize that your friend is still responsible for the actions of their dog. When you file a New York dog bite claim, your friend may not pay the compensation. That might come from their insurance company, which is also the company that would defend against your claim.
Realize that your injuries may be severe and may require extensive and expensive medical attention. Even if it was a friend’s dog, you should not be responsible for paying your medical expenses.
What if my child received a dog bite in New York?
Being attacked by a dog is traumatic enough. When your child is a dog-bite victim, that can send shock waves through your family. You want nothing more than to trade places with your child, taking away their pain and suffering.
You can bring a claim against the dog owner on behalf of your child. Attempting to collect compensation for your child’s injuries could help ensure that they get the medical treatment they deserve without you worrying about how you will cover your child’s medical expenses.
How much is my New York dog bite case worth?
This is the question we get most often, regardless of the type of injury suffered. Ultimately, there is no one size fits all answer.
The value of your New York dog bite claim can depend on:
- The type of injury received
- How long you spent in the hospital or rehabilitation
- The amount of time you spent out of work
- If you can return to work at all
- Your recovery timeline
- If you have any life-altering injuries
Each of these factors, and many more, can help determine the amount of compensation you may receive from the dog’s owner. One thing that is important to remember is that the majority of your financial burden may come in the future. Right now, days after your dog bite, you may have limited medical bills. Weeks and months later, however, you may find that your medical bills increase greatly because of the continued care you need.
Who is liable for my New York dog bite injuries?
Generally, the dog’s owner is liable to any victim of a dog bite or any other injury caused by their dog. If you were attacked by a dog that ran away, you may not know who the owner is, making it difficult to ascertain who you need to file a New York dog bite claim against.
But if the dog was being watched by a neighbor or a dog walker, then you may have a claim against that individual. This is why you must speak with a dog bite attorney as soon as possible after your attack. These are questions you need answers to, quickly, so that you can file your New York dog bite claim in time and try to hold the right person accountable for your injuries.
In New York, do I have to prove the dog was dangerous?
To collect compensation against the dog owner or someone else who was supposed to control the dog when it attacked you, you do not have to prove the dog was dangerous. While a determination of danger gives the court more options for how to handle the dog, you do not have to prove the dog was dangerous in your claim.
Instead, you must show:
- The dog owner or person in control of the dog knew or should have known the dog could hurt someone.
- The dog got free from a leash, fence, or other restraint and attacked you.
- You suffered injuries.
This might seem like a simple process because you know exactly what happened and witnessed the dog attack you. But, proving this legally requires the keen eye of a trusted dog bite lawyer. You deserve a lawyer at your side who knows what it takes to show that someone else was negligent in their handling of a dog and that dog subsequently attacked and injured you.
Will I have to go to trial for my New York dog bite claim?
The vast majority of New York dog bite cases settle out of court. Trials can be extremely costly for both parties and are time-consuming. Both parties generally have an interest in settling the case before it gets to trial.
That does not mean that all New York dog bite cases settle out of court. Sometimes, the other party refuses to settle for a fair and reasonable amount, forcing you to choose between going to trial or settling for less than you deserve. A lawyer will guide you through this process, helping you understand what happens at each step.
Why do I need a lawyer to settle my New York dog bite case?
Soon after you suffer an attack from a dog, the insurance company representing the dog’s owner may contact you and offer you a quick settlement. Many dog bite victims wonder why they need a lawyer when the insurance company is offering to settle their case. Unfortunately, the insurance company may be offering this quick settlement because it is only in their best interest. They would not want you to speak with a lawyer because your lawyer may tell you that this is not their best offer and it may not cover all of your expenses.
The initial settlement offer from the insurance company is often meant to make you go away for as little money as possible. Ultimately, the insurance company is in the business of making money, so they want to keep as much money as possible in their pocket and out of yours.
If you take the initial settlement offer, that could leave you in financial hardship. When you sign a settlement offer, you waive your right to bring any future claims against the insurance company for this dog bite injury. Months or years later, when you still have medical expenses and financial losses, you will be out of luck. You will be forced to pay out of pocket.
This tragic situation can be avoided by working with a dog bite lawyer. Your legal advisor would help you navigate the complex waters of the dog bite claims process, including settlements. Your lawyer can aggressively negotiate with the insurance company, working hard to help you collect every dollar you deserve.
How long will it take to conclude my New York dog bite case?
This depends on many factors. If your injuries are minor, your case may wrap up in less time. If you have lifelong injuries or have extended stays in the hospital, your case may take longer.
While we know this may frustrate you, the important thing is not the amount of time your case remains open, but the amount of damages you collect. You do not want to pay for your medical expenses or your financial losses when someone else caused them. The best way to achieve this goal is to partner with a dog bite attorney and remain patient. Contact Jacoby & Meyers LLP as soon as possible to get started.
What damages can I collect after a dog bite in New York?
The whole point of filing a claim is to collect compensation to cover your medical expenses and your financial losses related to the dog attack.
Your lawyer may try to collect the following compensation for you:
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Lost wages
- Lost earning potential
- Loss of companionship
- Loss of life enjoyment
- Present and future medical bills
- Rehabilitation costs
The extent of your injuries may be severe, and that may require you to rest and not work. If that happens, you may not only incur massive medical bills but you may also lose income by not working. It is important to remember that this is not your burden to bear. Your job is to focus completely on your physical and mental wellbeing. Your lawyer can take the legal stress off your shoulders, working diligently and aggressively to collect maximum compensation for your injuries.
Do I have to file a New York dog bite claim right away?
You have to file your claim soon. In New York, you only have three years from the date of your dog attack to file a claim. Three years might seem like a long time, but when you face serious and long-lasting injuries (and possibly even time out of work), that time will fly by.
Before you know it, three years will have passed and you can’t file a New York dog bite claim anymore. That could mean you are on the hook to cover all of your medical bills and other financial losses related to your dog bite injury. Do not let this happen to you. Work with our New York dog bite lawyers today.
What can a New York dog bite lawyer do for me?
Your lawyer can be your guide. You may not know what comes next, but your lawyer does. Your lawyer can stand up to the big insurance companies and attempt to collect maximum compensation for your injuries so you do not pay out of your own pocket.
The lawyer you choose can make a difference in your ability to collect every dollar you deserve.
Call Our New York Dog Bite Attorneys Today
If a dog attacked and bit you or a loved one in New York and left you with injuries and bills, speak with a trusted dog bite lawyer today. Contact Jacoby & Meyers LLP. You can reach our New York dog bite lawyers at (877) 565-2993, through our confidential contact page, or in a live chat, where we can quickly evaluate your claim and provide you with more information.
Jacoby & Meyers, LLP
39 Broadway Suite 1910,
New York, NY 10006
“If it were not for the integral legal team of experts at Jacoby & Meyers I would not be where I am today with my recovery. I highly recommend hiring Jacoby & Meyers should you ever find yourself injured in an accident, and an individual or company needs to be held accountable for their negligence.” -C.J.
Check out some of our other reviews.