What NOT to do in case of a Dog Bite Accident
Dog bites are common in the United States, with millions of people being bitten by dogs each year. Unfortunately, many of these incidents could have been prevented if owners had adequately trained and controlled their pets. When a dog bite occurs, knowing what to do to protect your health and legal rights is essential.
This article will outline what NOT to do in case of a dog bite accident from a legal perspective. This information will help you avoid common pitfalls and protect your rights in the event of a dog bite incident.
Do NOT leave the scene without identifying the dog and its owner(s)’
After a dog bite, it is essential to identify the dog and its owner. This information is crucial for both medical treatment and legal action.
Identifying the dog can help medical professionals determine if the animal has a history of rabies, which can be deadly if left untreated. Additionally, identifying the dog’s owner can help you seek compensation for your injuries and hold the owner accountable for their pet’s actions.
Here are some tips for identifying the dog and its owner:
Take photos/videos: If possible, take photos and/or videos of the dog and your injuries. This information can help medical professionals and authorities identify the animal.
Get witness statements: If there were any witnesses to the incident, get their contact information and ask for a statement about what they saw. Witnesses can help corroborate your account of the incident and provide additional information about the dog and its owner.
Look for identification: If the dog is wearing a collar, check for identification tags that may provide the owner’s name and contact information.
Check with animal control: Report the incident to your local animal control agency. They may have information about the dog and its owner, or they may be able to help you locate them.
In short, do not leave the scene of a dog bite incident without identifying the dog and its owner. Doing so can jeopardize your health and your legal claims.
Do NOT ignore your injuries.
Even if the dog bite seems minor, seeking medical attention as soon as possible is crucial. Ignoring your injuries can lead to serious health complications and make it harder to pursue legal action in the future.
Dog bites can lead to infections, scarring, and nerve damage. In some cases, they may even result in life-threatening conditions such as sepsis or rabies. Seeking medical attention can ensure that your injuries are properly treated and documented, which can be crucial for your legal case.
Here are some tips for seeking medical attention after a dog bite:
- Wash the wound: Use soap and water to clean the wound and remove any dirt or debris.
- Apply pressure: If the wound is bleeding, apply pressure to stop the bleeding.
- Seek medical attention: Immediately go to the emergency room or urgent care center. Be sure to tell the medical staff you were bitten by a dog and provide as much information about the dog and its owner as possible.
- Follow up with your doctor: After your initial treatment, follow up with your doctor to ensure your wound is healing correctly and monitor for any signs of infection or other complications.
In short, do not ignore your injuries after a dog bite. Seeking medical attention can help you receive proper treatment and strengthen your legal case if you decide to pursue legal action.
Do NOT sign anything without consulting a Lawyer.
If you are involved in a dog bite incident, you may be asked to sign various documents by insurance companies, the dog owner, or other parties. It is important to remember that signing documents without fully understanding their implications can be detrimental to your legal case.
For example, signing a document that releases the dog owner from liability may prevent you from seeking compensation for your injuries. Similarly, signing a medical release form may allow insurance companies to access your medical records and use them against you in the legal process.
Here are some tips for handling requests to sign documents after a dog bite:
- Do not sign anything until you have consulted with an Attorney: It is essential to speak with a lawyer experienced in dog bite cases before signing any documents. They can review the evidence and advise you on the potential consequences of signing.
- Do not provide any information without legal representation: Avoid speaking with insurance adjusters, dog owners, or other parties without legal representation. These parties may try to obtain information that can be used against you in the legal process.
- Keep copies of all documents: Keep copies of any documents you sign, and make sure to obtain copies of any documents that other parties sign. This can help your lawyer build your legal case.
In short, do not sign anything without consulting a lawyer. Doing so can jeopardize your legal claims and prevent you from obtaining the compensation you deserve.
Do NOT admit fault or apologize.
After a dog bite incident, it is vital to be cautious about what you say, as any admission of fault or apology can be used against you in legal proceedings.
Admitting fault or apologizing can be seen as an admission of liability, weakening your legal case and making it harder to obtain the compensation you deserve. In addition, dog owners and their insurance companies may use any admission of fault or apology to argue that you were partially or fully responsible for the incident.
Here are some tips for handling the situation after a dog bite:
Stay calm: Try to remain calm and composed, and avoid arguing with the dog owner or anyone else at the scene.
Gather information: Ask for the dog owner’s contact information and insurance details. This information can be crucial for your legal case and help you seek compensation for your injuries.
Seek medical attention: As mentioned in Section 3, seek medical attention immediately.
Speak with a lawyer: Contact a lawyer experienced in dog bite cases as soon as possible. They can advise you on the legal process and help you seek compensation for your injuries.
In short, do not admit fault or apologize after a dog bite incident. Instead, stay calm, gather information, seek medical attention, and speak with a lawyer as soon as possible. Doing so can protect your legal rights and help you seek the compensation you deserve.
Do NOT avoid reporting the incident
Reporting a dog bite incident to the appropriate authorities, such as animal control and the police, is crucial for holding negligent owners accountable and preventing future dog bite incidents.
Reporting the incident can help authorities investigate the incident and determine if the dog owner was negligent or violated any laws or regulations. It can also help ensure the dog is quarantined correctly and tested for rabies.
Here are some reasons why you should report a dog bite incident:
Legal accountability: Reporting the incident can help hold negligent owners accountable for their actions. This can result in legal consequences for the dog owner, such as fines or criminal charges.
Public safety: Reporting the incident can help prevent future dog bite incidents. Authorities can take steps to ensure that the dog owner takes necessary precautions to avoid future incidents.
Medical treatment: Reporting the incident can help ensure that the victim receives the necessary medical treatment. Sometimes, authorities may require the dog owner to pay for the victim’s medical bills.
In short, do not avoid reporting a dog bite incident. Reporting the incident can help hold negligent owners accountable, prevent future dog bite incidents, and ensure that the victim receives medical treatment.
Do NOT delay in seeking legal advice
After a dog bite incident, it is essential to consult with a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. Seeking legal advice can help you understand your legal rights and ensure that you take the necessary steps to protect your legal interests.
Here are some reasons why you should not delay seeking legal advice:
Time limits: There are legal time limits, known as statutes of limitations, within which a victim must file a lawsuit. The victim may miss the deadline to file a claim by delaying seeking legal advice.
Compensation: A personal injury lawyer can help you seek compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages resulting from the dog bite incident. They can also negotiate with the dog owner’s insurance company on your behalf.
Legal options: A personal injury lawyer can help you understand your legal options. These may include filing a lawsuit or negotiating a settlement with the dog owner or insurance company.
Evidence preservation: A personal injury lawyer can help preserve evidence related to the incident. This can include witness statements, photographs, medical records, and other documentation.
In short, do not delay seeking legal advice after a dog bite incident. Seeking legal advice can help you understand your legal rights and ensure that you take the necessary steps to protect your legal interests. A personal injury lawyer can also help you seek compensation for your damages, understand your legal options, and preserve evidence related to the incident.
At Terhovsepian Law, we understand the physical and emotional trauma that can result from a dog bite incident. That’s why we’re committed to helping victims of dog bites in Glendale, California, and the surrounding areas.
Our experienced personal injury lawyers specialize in dog bite cases. We’re dedicated to getting our clients the compensation they deserve for their medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages resulting from the incident. And, unlike other law firms, we will only ask for payment if we win the case for our clients.
We also offer free case evaluations, so if you or a loved one has been injured in a dog bite incident, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. We’ll review your case and help you understand your legal rights and options.
At Terhovsepian Law, we believe everyone deserves justice, and we’ll fight to ensure you receive the compensation and peace of mind you deserve. Contact us today to schedule your free case evaluation.
Dog bite incidents can be traumatic and have long-lasting physical and emotional effects on victims. While it’s important to know what to do if a dog bites you or a loved one, it’s equally important to know what NOT to do. In this article, we’ve outlined the key actions to avoid after a dog bite incident, including:
- Do NOT delay seeking medical attention
- Do NOT leave the scene without identifying the dog and its owner
- Do NOT sign anything without legal advice
- Do NOT admit fault or apologize
- Do NOT avoid reporting the incident
- Do NOT delay in seeking legal advice
By avoiding these actions, you can protect your legal rights and ensure that you take the necessary steps to hold the dog owner accountable for their negligence.
We encourage you to share this information with your friends and family to increase awareness and promote safety. And if you or a loved one has been injured in a dog bite incident, don’t hesitate to contact a personal injury lawyer for a free case evaluation.