Animal attacks are scary, and you can suffer from traumatic injuries and deep tissue wounds. Forty eight dog attacks have caused deaths in 2019 alone, and most of the victims were adults. About 4.5 million dog bites are reported every year, but California is where they happen the most. About 14% of dog bites occur in California each year. When a dog attacks you due to no fault of your own, you can seek the help of a Stockton dog bite lawyer to help you get a settlement for your wounds.
What Injuries Can I Receive From a Dog Bite?
After getting bitten by a dog, your personal injury can be anywhere from a surface wound to a severe injury. Your injuries can be any of the following:
Even light dog bites can result in painful inflammation and bacterial infections that can affect your entire body. Some of the most common bacteria you might find causing a dog bite infection include streptococcus, staphylococcus, and eikenella bacterial species. It is also possible that the dog has rabies if they haven’t been injected with a rabies shot. It is important that you get lab tests and antibiotics if necessary.
The pressure per square inch of a dog bite can sometimes result in crushed bones and fractures, though this is rarer. Dog bites that cause fractures are most likely caused in children.
Puncture Wounds and Scarring
Most dog bites leave tears in the skin, where there may be puncture wounds from the dog’s teeth. Although this is a more superficial injury, it is still just as painful. The dog bite can also cause hard-to-remove scarring, leaving a person with low self-esteem due to disfigurement.
You may have experienced tears in your muscle tissue after a dog bite, which can be extremely hurtful. Muscle injuries can be debilitating and take some time to recover from, as you will have limited ability to move after a dog bite has wounded a limb.
What Should I Do After a Dog Bite in Stockton, CA?
After you have experienced a dog bite personal injury, you should begin documenting how this happened to you. Documenting the incident will help your attorney get the information they need to start your dog bite personal injury claim. California is a fault state, which means that the dog’s owner can be held responsible for your dog bite injuries.
Photograph Your Injuries
You will want to take pictures of your dog bite wounds and the dog if possible. Also, it may be helpful to take photos of the environment around you and where the dog bite injury occurred. For example, the dog may have escaped from its leash, or the gate is open. You can take a photograph of the broken leash or any other evidence that led up to your personal injury.
Collect Contact Information
After a dog bite, it is imperative that you get the contact information of the dog owner. If the dog owner doesn’t know that their dog bit you, you can locate the owner and inform them how this accident occurred. It also helps to ask if the dog had a rabies shot. Your attorney will need their information so that they can contact them at a later date.
Get Medical Treatment
Even if you believe your dog bite wasn’t that bad, you still should get medical help. Your doctor can clean your wounds and give you antibiotics to make sure you don’t have a bacterial infection. They can also give you stitches, a cast, pain medication, or any other necessary medical treatments to help you recover from your wounds.
Speak to a Dog Bite Lawyer
Once you’ve gotten the medical treatment you need, it is time to get professional advice from a lawyer in Stockton, CA. Your attorney can inform you of the process on how to begin your dog bite settlement claim.
How Do Dog Bite Lawyers Help?
Your lawyer will do their best to support your claim for a settlement after you experience a severe dog bite. If you are eligible for compensation, they can provide years of experience and knowledge in personal injury to help you get a settlement.
Create a Case
Even if you aren’t sure that you are due compensation, your lawyer can investigate your case and identify if you are at fault for your injuries. If you had a normal reason to pass through the area you were injured in, for example, jogging, going to a store, or any other normal activity, and were bitten, you are not at fault. Also, if the owner didn’t advise you to stay away or make an effort to keep their dog away from you, this can make them liable for your injuries. There are many other reasons why you may not be at fault for your dog bite injury. You can seek counseling from an attorney to navigate you through how this works.
Your attorney will calculate how much you are owed based upon the damages you experienced and the severity of your injuries. Your settlement will include economic and non-economic damages, and you can add in income loss from missed time at work, medical bills, as well as pain and suffering. If your attorney identifies any other damages, they may advise you to include this in your compensation.
Lawyers are very organized and will clearly communicate all of your damages and estimations on paper. These documents will be shared to all involved parties in a prompt and easy-to-understand manner. This way, there is no confusion about the settlement costs and why it was estimated that way.
Negotiate a Settlement
Attorneys will spend weeks, months, and even up to a year negotiating a settlement with the other party to come to a fair resolution. They will stay in contact and update responses between you and the dog’s owner to reach a settlement agreement. If the other party does not want to settle, your attorney can represent you in court and file a lawsuit.
You Can Work With a Stockton Dog Bite Lawyer For Help
Dog bite injuries shouldn’t be brushed off or dismissed, as they can result in damages that can significantly impact your life in a negative way. When a dog bites you, they put you at risk of a bacterial infection. You also may have a temporary disability to a limb, hand, or foot after a dog attack. This can result in severe pain that prevents you from working a normal full-time job. The cost of medical bills and lost wages can become a financial burden over time. After you have experienced a dog bite – personal injury, you can consider speaking with a law firm that knows all about representing your type of settlement claim. Your settlement will be estimated based upon the severity of your injuries, including the emotional impact of the attack. Additionally, your attorney can identify how the other party is at fault and prove that you are owed a settlement. Contact Brown & Gessell for a free consultation.