For many people, dogs are a sweet and cuddly part of the family. They can also be protective of their owners and aggressive towards strangers when they feel threatened, which can lead to serious dog bite injuries.
When you are the victim of a dog attack, you need to contact a Birmingham dog bite attorney right away. You could be entitled to monetary compensation for your pain and suffering, and you must act quickly to preserve evidence and file a strong claim before the statute of limitations runs out.
Norris Injury Lawyers will make you and your needs our priority! Call us today at (800) 477-7510 for a free consultation. Our dog bite lawyers are ready to assist you 24/7.
When is a Dog Bite Victim Entitled to Damages?
Dog bite laws aren’t always so black and white. You may not be entitled to compensation in every instance you are bitten by a dog. There are a few questions dog bite lawyers might ask you to see if you qualify.
You may be asked:
- Did you provoke the dog?
- Were you trespassing on someone else’s property?
- Were you on the dog owner’s private property when the attack happened?
These points are important because dog owners may have a right to defend themselves and their property.
You will need someone with experience who can argue your side of the story, so please consider hiring a Birmingham dog bite attorney with Norris Injury Lawyers. Our people truly understand the complexities of dog bite law and how to work through them.
Common Dog Attack Injuries
When a dangerous animal like a dog decides to attack someone, receiving a bite is only one type of injury the victim could possibly sustain. Dogs come in all different shapes and sizes. A very large and aggressive animal can easily knock a person to the ground.
Common injuries and complications found in dog attacks include:
- Head injuries
- Broken bones
- Dog claw wounds
People who are at the most risk of falling as a result of a dog attack are the elderly and children. A fall of this type may also cause damage to personal property like glasses, a watch, or a cell phone.
If you have been injured or had your property damaged due to a dog attack, you might be entitled to compensation.
What Damages Can You Receive After You Have Been Injured by a Dog Bite?
After an injury has occurred, you might be thinking you want to make a dog bite injury claim against the dog owner to receive money damages. There are two different types of damages you could get: economic and non-economic.
Economic damages can include medical bills and lost income from taking time off work to heal from your injuries. Be sure to keep track of all your documentation, including:
- Hospital bills
- Medical services
- Repair costs from damaged property
- Therapy and recovery services
- Transportation costs
Non-economic damages can include pain, suffering, emotional distress, and the loss of a loved one. It is much harder to determine non-economic damages as there isn’t a specific dollar amount that can be attached to a non-economic loss.
In that case, dog bite attorneys should be able to help you estimate how much you can get.
How Should Dangerous Dogs Be Kept?
Section 3-6A-3 of the Alabama Code gives direction on how a dog that is deemed dangerous should be kept in order to protect others. It must be confined in a space so it is prevented from entering the general public.
The space must:
- Be able to be locked (either with a combination lock or a key)
- Have sides that are securely in place and a top attached to each side; each of the sides must be sunk into the ground at least two feet or built over a concrete pad so the dog cannot dig itself out
- Be protected from the elements and contain proper ventilation
- Have a sign that alerts everyone there is a dangerous dog inside and not to trespass
- Be large enough that the dog can stand without being restricted and is at least 4 times the length of its body
- Remain locked whenever the dog is inside
Despite these rules, dog owners can have a difficult time controlling their pets. Dog bites happen all the time, even with reasonable precautions in place. If a dog attacks you due to its owner’s negligence in not following these rules, you may be compensated for your injuries.
Is Alabama a “One-Bite” State?
Dog bite laws differ from state to state. This is why if you have been involved in a dog bite incident, you need to contact a lawyer. One common dog bite law is the “one-bite” rule.
In short, this law states that the only way dog owners could be held liable for their animal’s injuries is if they already knew their pets had a propensity for being aggressive. If you were taking such a person to court seeking damages, your lawyer would have to prove that he or she knew the dog could bite others.
One-bite laws make these types of cases more difficult to win a personal injury lawsuit. The good news is, Alabama is a full liability state.
In full liability states, a dog owner has full responsibility for paying damages if his or her dog bites and injures another person. The amount of compensation you can win may vary based on the owner’s knowledge of the dog’s aggressive nature.
If the dog bite happened on the dog owner’s own premises, you would have to prove you were there legally. You are not allowed to trespass on someone’s property or provoke a dog and then later make a dog bite claim.
Filing a Lawsuit for Dog Bite Injuries
There are many lawyers who claim to be dog bite attorneys, but few are truly versed in local dog bite law. You need to contact a true Birmingham, AL, dog bite lawyer who understands and has litigated these types of personal injury cases before.
Norris Injury Lawyers has what you need. Our entire legal team has experience handling personal injury cases of all types for four decades, including dog bite claims.
Every case is different and the laws can vary across the nation, so contacting Norris Injury Lawyers is a great first step. We will be able to determine whether you are entitled to receive compensation for your dog bite injury.
Many of these cases may be settled without ever having to step into a courtroom. If the dog owner knows he or she has been negligent in protecting the public from an aggressive dog, that person can save time and money by settling the case.
On the other hand, people love their dogs as part of the family. They may decide to defend their dog, especially if its life is at risk. This is where experience can make a difference in getting you the compensation you deserve.
Norris Injury Lawyers Get Results for Dog Bites
We know dog attacks and dog bites happen when you least expect them, but your injuries and other resulting damages don’t have to make you put your life on hold. We can hold the dog owners responsible for your pain and suffering while you focus on recovery.
Norris Injury Lawyers have been helping the residents of Birmingham, Alabama, for over 40 years, and we look forward to helping you too. We are the city’s #1 personal injury attorneys and are available whenever you need us, day or night.
If a dog bites you and causes an injury, call us right away at (800) 477-7510 for a free consultation. There’s no need to hesitate; our No Fee Guarantee® is available to all.