Atlanta Dog Bite Lawyer
Dogs have a long history of being known as man’s best friend, and many dog owners consider their dogs part of the family. However, dog owners must understand their legal obligations when it comes to their pets and know what their level of responsibility is if their dog attacks and injures someone.
Dogs of any size and breed can cause serious harm to victims, and anyone who reaches to touch or pet a dog should know this. Some states follow what is known as a “One Bite Rule,” in which a dog’s owner essentially has one chance to avoid liability for his or her dog’s actions. Laws for dog bites vary from state to state. In Georgia, dog bites fall under negligence law. Victims of dog bites and dog owners should know Georgia laws surrounding these incidents and an Atlanta dog bite lawyer at The Dixon Firm, P.C. can help.
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Information for Victims of Dog Bites in Georgia
If you have been bitten by a dog in Georgia, the details of the incident are crucial for obtaining just compensation. Your first course of action after a dog bite should be to seek medical attention for your injuries. Not only will this help safeguard your personal wellbeing, but a timely visit to the doctor will also show the court that the dog did injure you and that you promptly sought treatment. Delaying seeking medical care does not look good in court; the court may assume that since you did not seek medical treatment for your injuries right away, they were probably not severe enough to warrant medical intervention.
To successfully obtain compensation for your dog bite injury in Georgia, your Atlanta personal injury attorney will need to prove that the dog’s owner was negligent at the time of the attack. Unlike states with a “One Bite Rule” or other laws, in Georgia, the only ways a dog owner can be held liable for a dog bite is if the dog is known to have a history of aggression or was not under proper control at the time.
According to Georgia law, the victim must have been on the property legally at the time of attack. A trespasser who is bitten by a dog cannot sue the owner for injuries.
Defenses for Atlanta Dog Owners
If you own a dog who bites another person, there are several defenses you may use depending on the situation. If the victim provoked the dog or was an otherwise threatening presence, then the dog’s instinct to protect itself and its owner does not mean it was being aggressive. This is a similar concept to self-defense. Additionally, as previously mentioned, you are not liable for your dog biting a trespasser on your property.
Compensation for a Dog Bite Injury
If a dog has bitten you and the owner is found negligent for your damages, there are several types of compensation your Atlanta dog bite attorney can pursue on your behalf:
- Medical expenses related to your injuries. This includes emergency transportation costs, surgical bills, hospital bills, and all other medical expenses resulting from the incident.
- Pain and suffering. Dogs’ teeth and jaws are capable of inflicting serious punctures, lacerations, and crushing wounds. Your attorney will need to consult with expert witnesses who will assess your injuries and the dog’s physical traits to determine the level of pain you experienced. A judge will use this testimony to award an appropriate amount of compensation.
- Lost income if your injury caused you to miss work. For serious injuries that prevent you from resuming your job, you can claim compensation for the income you would have reasonably expected to earn had the attack not taken place.
- Property damage, in cases where the dog damaged any of your personal belongings.
Contact an Atlanta Dog Bite Lawyer If You Have Been Bitten
Dog bite injury cases in Georgia can be exceedingly complex. If you’ve been on either side of a dog bite incident in the Atlanta area, it’s crucial that you seek competent, reliable legal representation to fight for your rights. The attorneys at The Dixon Firm, P.C. are standing by to look into your case and fight for your rights. Contact us by calling 404-733-1166 to schedule a free consultation.