Phoenix Dog Bite Lawyer
Each year there are approximately 350,000 victims of dog bites that are seen in emergency rooms, while there are 850,000 that need some sort of medical attention from a bite. This does not even include the numerous other attacks that may not result in serious injury, but could still cause damage both physically and emotionally. The Center for Disease Control conducted research from 2001-2003 and concluded during period there were 4.5 million people hurt in some way by a dog bite. This number appears to be rising, and the losses that people seem to be experiencing from these types of incidents total over $1 billion annually.
Why Turn to Gerber Injury Law
- At Gerber Injury Law, our team has decades of experience handling complex injury claims throughout the state of Arizona.
- We meet with clients one on one to discuss their goals and help them work towards crafting a tailored legal strategy so they can recover the compensation they need.
- Our team has recovered more than $100 million in settlements and verdicts over the last two decades, and we have no problem taking a claim all the way to trial if necessary.
- We have a thorough understanding of the dog bite laws in Arizona, and we will work with animal control, insurance carriers, and at-fault parties to handle the entire case on behalf of our client.
About Dog Bite Claims
According to the Arizona Revised Statues §11-1025, it imposes a strict code of conduct for owners and their dogs. The owner is held liable for any and all dog bite injuries that take place towards another individual who is on their property and has lawful presence to be there. It does not matter if the owner did not know or realize the level of viciousness displayed by their pet they are responsible for the actions of their animals while on their property or out and about.
Any trespasser that wanders onto a person’s property without prior invitation cannot pursue damages for any injuries; however, this is not always the case with young children. Toddlers may venture towards a dog out of curiosity, only to be bitten. In this case, the owner may be liable if they did not provide proper fencing, signs or mechanisms to prevent dog bites from happening. Many dog bite cases are determined on an individual basis as there are so many different factors that can influence a situation.
Most Common Dog Bite Injuries
Dog bite injuries can range significantly in severity. In some cases, a bite may not even break the skin and only leave minor bruising. However, dogs have very powerful jaws that can inflict severe injuries on individuals. It is not uncommon for dog bite incidents to result in the following injuries for victims:
- Head and neck injuries
- Face injuries
- Eye injuries
- Puncture wounds
- Severed veins, arteries, muscles, or tendons
- Broken bones, particularly in the hands and fingers
- Major blood loss
In the aftermath of a dog bite injury, it is not uncommon for individuals to sustain major infections. A dog bite could introduce bacteria or foreign objects into the body that individuals are unaware of. Additionally, dog bites can lead to significant scarring and disfigurement, leading to a lifelong reminder that the incident occurred.
In addition to these traumatic physical injuries caused by the dog bite incident, we do want to point out that it is not uncommon for individuals to suffer from significant emotional and psychological trauma. Dog attacks can be incredibly scary, and the subsequent injuries and recovery process can add to the trauma. It is important to keep this in mind when working to secure compensation for these losses.
We want to note that children and the elderly are more susceptible to severe injuries in the event a dog bite occurs. Children are closer to the danger zone in these scenarios, often right at the level with a dog’s jaw. This means that they are more likely to sustain severe facial and head injuries as a result of a dog bite or attack. Elderly individuals are often not able to fend off a dog attack, and their skin, veins, and arteries are more susceptible to severe trauma in the event a dog bite injury occurs.
How Will an Attorney Help a Dog Bite Injury Case?
It is crucial to have a dog bite injury lawyer by your side when working to secure compensation, even if you are sure that the strict liability dog bite laws will apply. The reality is that there are various steps that have to take place in order to secure compensation from insurance carriers or the at-fault party. A skilled dog bite lawyer in Phoenix can:
- Gather all evidence needed to prove liability. This can include photographs or video surveillance of the incident, police reports, eyewitness statements, and more.
- Make sure their client is evaluated by trusted medical professionals who can treat the injury and help provide estimates for total expected financial losses.
- Handle negotiations with the insurance carrier and at-fault party in order to ensure their client receives fair compensation for their losses.
- Fully prepare to take the case to trial if necessary to ensure their client is treated fairly throughout this entire process.
Steps to Take After a Dog Bite in Phoenix
There are various steps that dog bite victims can take to help ensure that they recover full compensation for their losses. This includes:
- Seeking immediate medical care. Any person who sustains a dog bite injury needs to seek medical care as soon as possible. Even if the injury seems relatively minor, it is important to let a doctor treat the injury to prevent possible infections. Failing to seek medical care right away could cause problems with the the insurance carriers.
- Reporting the incident. It is important to report dog bite injuries to the appropriate authorities. Depending on your municipality, this could include notifying law enforcement officials or animal control officers. A police or animal control report will likely be necessary for insurance purposes, and it will help establish a history of what happened.
- Gathering and keeping all evidence. A dog bite injury victim can work to gather various types of evidence if they are able to do so. This can include photographs of the injuries or the area where the dog bite occurred. This could also include keeping any clothing or items damaged during the dog bite incident.
- Contacting an attorney. A dog bite injury victim should speak to a skilled lawyer soon after the incident occurs. An attorney can step in and handle all communication with other parties involved.
- Continuing all medical treatment. Dog bite injury victims need to continue all medical care recommended by a doctor until they have reached maximum medical improvement. Failing to continue medical care could result in the insurance carriers denying the claim.
Affording a Dog Bite Injury Attorney
At Gerber Injury Law, we understand how challenging it can be to afford an attorney after sustaining an injury. This is particularly true when you have medical bills and possibly even lost wages to contend with. That is why we take Phoenix dog bite injury cases on a contingency fee basis. This means our clients will not have to pay any upfront or out-of-pocket costs when it comes to their cases. In fact, dog bite injury victims will not owe a dime and legal fees until after we successfully recover the compensation they are entitled to for their losses. We believe that this type of fee arrangement helps dog bite injury victims handle their case without fear of putting themselves in further financial jeopardy just because they want to hold the at-fault party accountable.
Seeking Compensation for Your Losses
Unfortunately, out of these hundreds of thousands of victims, only about 16,000 people ever receive any compensation from the insurance companies. This comes out to about only 3 or 4 victims out of every 1,000 people that actually receive help, which is a staggeringly low statistic. Arizona is extremely strict when it comes to laws related to dog bite injuries. There is no such thing as “one free bite” or an excuse for owners that claim that their dogs have never bitten before. In cases where the dog owner is found to be liable for the incident, the victim has the right to pursue restitution for the following items:
- Any medical costs including medications, hospital charges, emergency room fees, doctor visits, or ambulance charges
- All lost income
- The entire estimated cost that it will take to pursue certain surgeries and procedures to help heal wounds, scars and any other severe physical disfigurements
- Costs to replace personal property that may have been damaged
- Financial help to cover any injuries towards another pet or the loss of the pet’s life
- Any counseling costs due to the trauma
This is not an entirely comprehensive list and it is highly important that you seek out the help of a practiced dog bite lawyer to learn more about the recovery that you may be entitled to receive.
Phoenix Dog Bite Lawyer Recovers Millions for Past Clients
With a history of success assisting his clients both in and out of the courtroom, Phoenix personal injury attorney Ken Gerber is more than qualified to handle any type of injury case. He understands and has compassion on those that have been injured due to dog bites throughout the state of Arizona. Knowing full well that certain dog attacks can result in catastrophic injuries or even wrongful death of a loved one, Attorney Gerber is here to provide you with the knowledgeable legal representation that you deserve.
With more than 20 years of experience, contact our office today to learn how personalized attention to detail could help garner restitution on your behalf.
“Thank you, Ken, for the great work you did on my personal injury case! … You’re a real pro and I was proud to have you representing me!”- Meadlowlark Lemon • Harlem Globetrotter - Sun City, AZ
“Mr. Gerber and his staff were very helpful after my accident, taking all the stress and worries off my hands and really doing a great job!”- V.C. - El Mirage, AZ
“Words don’t begin to express my appreciation for the excellent way Gerber Injury Law handled my injury case.”- A.R. - Sun City, AZ
“Due to Ken Gerber’s efficient and effective legal representation, a settlement was reached within 6 weeks.”- J.G.