- Our Erie Dog Bite Injury Attorneys Can Help Explain Your Case
- We Identify Your Eligibility for Dog Bite Damages
- Get Prompt Medical Attention After a Dog Bite
- Statute of Limitations on Dog Bite Claims in Pennsylvania
- Contact Berger and Green Today for Your Free Consultation
Any dog can bite, regardless of breed, age, or sex. However, owners are obligated to train dogs to prevent accidental bites. If you or a loved one suffered a bite requiring medical care, an Erie personal injury lawyer from our firm can determine if you have a case against the dog’s owner. Contact us today to speak with our team about options for maximum compensation through a personal injury claim or suit.
Our Erie Dog Bite Injury Attorneys Can Help Explain Your Case
Most dog bites occur in the home, according to a study by Heliyon. That increases the likelihood of knowing the dog or the owner, making it hard to know how to pursue compensation for injuries. The opposite scenario—an unfamiliar dog in an unfamiliar place—comes with its own fears and frustrations.
Following a dog attack, our personal injury attorneys serving Erie can help discern the best path to recoup your losses. As a form of premises liability, homeowner’s insurance could cover your dog bite case, and you can file a claim through the dog owner’s homeowners policy. Other cases might require a civil suit.
Deciding if there is a claim to be made depends on factors like policy terms, the attack scenario, and whether someone was negligent. Leave it to us to sort out these details. We can determine your eligibility for making a claim for compensation.
We Provide Everyday Support
Determining if there is an avenue for recovery is just one step away. At Berger and Green, our team:
- Checks in with you regularly
- Makes sure you understand any legal language
- Handles communication with insurance companies
- Gathers evidence for your claim or suit
- Prepares for a court case if necessary
For a free legal consultation with a Dog Bite lawyer serving Erie, call 412-661-1400
We Identify Your Eligibility for Dog Bite Damages
Whether or not the dog that bit you has attacked before, you may have the opportunity to hold the owner accountable for your injuries, so don’t hesitate to explore your options. We can potentially seek compensation for:
- Past and future medical bills related to the attack
- Income lost while recovering
- Income you will lose due to your injuries
- Pain and suffering
- Reduced quality of life
For example, you may need reconstructive surgeries. In addition to covering the cost of operations and rehabilitation, we can pursue damages for the emotional trauma of suffering disfiguring injuries. Permanent injuries can warrant compensation to help you adjust to a different job or lowered quality of life.
What damages you receive can depend on the circumstances of your case, such as if the attack was unprovoked, if the dog was dangerous, or if the owner was negligent.
Medical Damages Under Pennsylvania’s Strict Liability Law
Pennsylvania has a strict liability law for dog bite claims—the owner is typically held responsible for your injuries even if the dog was not previously vicious.
Under these laws, financial compensation for your medical bills can be pursued by proving that:
- The dog bit you
- You did not provoke the attack
- The attack took place either in public or on private property on which you had a lawful presence
If the owner cannot prove that you provoked the dog before the attack, they must pay for the full cost of your medical bills. However, you cannot seek compensation for pain and suffering or lost income. You can only recover those losses through a lawsuit based on the owner’s negligence.
Damages From Proving the Dog Was Dangerous
The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture (PDA) considers a dog dangerous if it has attacked, killed, or inflicted severe injury on a human or another animal without provocation. Dangerous dogs also have a history of attacking people or animals.
The owner of a dangerous dog must follow specific requirements. For instance, 3 PS §459-502 states that any dog that bites a person must be detained, isolated, and evaluated for a minimum of 10 days at the owner’s expense. Specific circumstances of each case, like the extent of your injuries and the results of the dog’s assessment, determine the next steps you can take.
If the dog in your case had a history of biting or aggressive behavior, was adjudicated as dangerous, and the owner failed to control or contain it, we can use that to pursue compensation for more than just your medical losses. We can file a lawsuit for comprehensive damages, including lost income and pain and suffering.
We Also Help Families of Dog Bite Victims
According to the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), at least half of dog bites affect children. In fact, they suffer more dog bites than any other age group annually and have the highest risk of suffering severe injuries.
We can assist you with filing a claim or suit for loved ones, including children. Parents can pursue compensation for injured children, while other qualifying family members can file for wrongful death after losing someone to a fatal attack. We can walk you through these options when we evaluate your case.
Erie Dog Bite Lawyer Near Me 412-661-1400
Get Prompt Medical Attention After a Dog Bite
Bites that appear minor at first can worsen. Even minor puncture wounds can collect harmful bacteria and viruses. According to Healthline, other complications include infections, rabies, and muscle or nerve damage. Moreover, broken and crushed bones and damage to tendons or ligaments may not appear on the surface. These types of injuries require treatment by a healthcare professional, who can help you prevent infection, heal properly, and control your pain.
In addition to protecting your health, prompt medical treatment can protect your right to compensation. Underestimating your injuries can cause an insurance company to underestimate them as well, even after you realize your losses are worse than you expected.
We understand worries about seeking help because of the cost—medical bills from dog bites are sometimes substantial—but our Erie dog attack attorneys can help you pursue damages. Get help right away.
Statute of Limitations on Dog Bite Claims in Pennsylvania
You can file a claim against the liable owner in your dog bite case, but 42 Pa. CS §5524 only allows you a specific time frame, typically up to two years for a personal injury claim.
Exceptions to these rules do apply under certain circumstances, such as if you were bitten as a minor. However, our Erie dog bite lawyers can determine how much time you have left and help you get started before the deadline passes.
Complete a Free Case Evaluation form now
Contact Berger and Green Today for Your Free Consultation
People assume serious responsibilities when they take a dog into their homes, including ensuring not only the safety and well-being of their pet but also that of other people and animals. Every dog is different, and every dog can bite. Owners must consider this before taking their dogs out in public or welcoming guests into their homes. Otherwise, devastating injuries can result.
If you, your child, or another family member suffered a serious or fatal dog attack in Erie, PA, the dog bite lawyers at Berger and Green can investigate your case, establish liability, and pursue financial recovery on your behalf. Contact us today to get started.