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Surprise Dog Bite Attorney

Dog bites can lead to serious injuries and are more common than you might think. The National Institute of Health noted that between 2005-2013 there were an average of 337,103 emergency department visits each year. Hospital admission from dog bites during this time was 1.7%, which means that nearly 6,000 people each year are admitted into hospitals from dog bites, and this can lead to significant costs.

If you have been injured by a dog bite, you could be entitled to compensation to cover the costs and damages associated with your injury. These include not only your short- and long-term medical bills, but also compensation for any lost wages during your recovery, and any negative impact your injuries might have on your ability to work and support your family. Determining when a dog owner is liable for your damages and then accurately measuring them can be difficult while trying to recover from your injury.

To support the highest possible compensation, and to take the stress of your claim out of your day-to-day life, consider working with a Surprise dog bite attorney from The Law Offices of John Phebus. Our attorneys have years of experience helping injured clients collect the compensation they deserve, and when we take your case, we handle everything from start to finish. Read on to learn more about Arizona dog bite injuries, and connect with us at the number below for your free consultation.

Why Choose Us?

  • We offer the aggressive legal representation that you need when going up against a pet owner and his or her insurance company. Our attorneys have over 20 years of legal experience.
  • Our case results speak for themselves. We aren’t afraid of taking dog bite injury cases to trial, if necessary, to achieve the results that our clients deserve.
  • Our lawyers charge no upfront fees on injury cases. You will only pay your lawyer if we successfully secure financial compensation for your dog bite injury claim.

Common Injuries Suffered in Dog Attacks

Some dog bite injuries are minor, especially if they involve a smaller dog and only light contact between the dog’s teeth and the victim. Unfortunately, some dogs are capable of inflicting much more serious damage when they attack – including taking a victim’s life. The elderly and young children are most at risk of suffering catastrophic to fatal dog bite injuries in an attack. If a victim survives a dog attack, he or she can still sustain life-changing injuries that require emergency medical care. These include:

  • Puncture wounds
  • Cuts and severe lacerations
  • Crush injuries and broken bones
  • Degloving/skin avulsion
  • Hand and arm injuries
  • Facial injuries
  • Nerve damage
  • Scarring
  • Permanent disfigurement
  • Infections
  • Diseases, such as rabies
  • Emotional damage
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Wrongful death

If you or a loved one suffers any type of injury in a dog attack in Surprise, you may be entitled to financial compensation from the owner or controller of the animal. Financial compensation could help you and your family pay for your required health care and medical treatments after a dog attack, such as reconstructive surgeries and therapy, as well as future medical costs. It can also hold the pet owner accountable.

Arizona Dog Bite Statute Determines the Outcome of Your Case or Claim

To collect compensation for the damages associated with your dog bite injury, you’ll need to prove the owner is liable based upon Arizona law. According to Arizona Revised Statute 11-1025, Arizona uses a strict liability dog bite law, meaning that the owner of a dog is liable for damage caused by the dog regardless of whether the owner knew of the dog’s viciousness or was negligent. Once liability is determined, then it is time to measure your damages, which your Surprise dog bite attorney can help with as we’ll discuss below.

Under Arizona’s dog bite statute, a dog owner is liable for a bite if:

  • The person who was bitten was in a public place
  • The injured person was lawfully in a private place, including the property of the owner of the dog

Basically what this means is that if a dog bites you when you are in a public place, or on private property that you have been invited onto, then you will be entitled to compensation for the damages associated with your dog bite injury. The law makes no mention of leashes, and depending upon the facts and circumstances of your case you will generally still be able to collect damages when the dog that bit you was leashed.

What to Do After a Dog Bite Injury

If a dog bites you in Surprise, get to a place that is safely away from the animal. If your injuries are serious and you require urgent medical care, call 911. Otherwise, go to a doctor or hospital near you as soon as possible for professional wound treatment. It is important to get professional medical care for a dog bite injury due to the high risk of infections and dog-borne diseases from bacteria in the animal’s mouth.

If you can, obtain information before you leave the scene of the attack. This includes the name of the owner of the dog, the pet owner’s homeowners insurance information, the time and location of the incident, information about the dog (such as the breed and vaccination status), photographs of the dog and your injuries, and the names of any eyewitnesses. Report the dog bite injury to Animal Care & Control in Surprise so that the city can put it on record.

Once you’ve seen a doctor, focus on the financial side of your recovery. Contact the pet owner’s insurance company to file a claim. Homeowners and renters insurance policies generally cover dog bite injury claims, since pets are classified as property in the eyes of the law. However, it can be difficult to obtain fair financial compensation from a pet owner’s insurance provider. You may need to hire an attorney to represent you during insurance settlement negotiations – especially if your case ends up in court in Surprise.

How Long Do You Have to File a Dog Bite Injury Claim?

In Arizona, the law gives dog bite injury victims one year from the date of the attack to file a personal injury claim. If you bring your claim within a year, Arizona’s strict liability law will apply, meaning the dog owner can be held immediately liable for your injuries. If you are filing a common law negligence claim, on the other hand, you will have two years to file. However, this type of case is more difficult to win, as you will need to prove that the pet owner was negligent.

Connect With a Surprise Dog Bite Attorney to Discuss Your Case

To consider options with an experienced attorney, schedule a free consultation or call (623) 847-7117 to connect with The Law Offices of John Phebus. Through your risk-free consultation, we’ll collect information and determine if your case is a fit with our firm. If we take your case, you’ll have complete support throughout the entire process, and we only get paid if we win.