Dogs are supposed to be a man’s best friend. However, when these animals get aggressive, anything can happen in the blink of an eye or a flash of fangs. Dog bites often take victims by surprise. Many times, those who experience injury due to a dog or animal bite are not expecting this to occur. These accidents primarily affect individuals who are unable to defend themselves, such as young children or the elderly. It is essential to be informed of your rights and to know how to file a liability claim regarding an incident where a loved one or family member suffered a dog bite. These bites can be extremely severe depending on the size of the dog and the age of the victim. With a thorough understanding of your rights to file a claim due to a dog bite attack, the attorneys at Torgenson Law will stand at your side and protect you or your loved one during this difficult time.
If you or a family member was attacked and bitten by a dog, an experienced personal injury attorney who understands dog bite laws in Arizona can help. The lawyers at Torgenson Law are here to help you in your time of need. We have a team of professional and skilled dog bite attorneys who have helped many dog bite victims in Arizona recover physically as well as financially after a dog attack.
Dog owners should be held accountable for their dog’s actions and for the role that they played in the attack. Contact the lawyers at Torgenson Law to discuss your dog bite incident and find out if you have the right to pursue a claim for your injuries and losses.
Knowing Who is at Risk
Dog attacks are often very sudden and typicaly happen before victims can process what is occurring. Not only are these incidents quick, but they can ultimately result in severe and significant injuries. Often, victims do not anticipate the actions of the animal or misread signals that the dog may be dangerous or unwelcoming. Most victims view the animal as a friend and may have had peaceful interactions with the dog in the past. This expectation of an enjoyable interaction can make these kinds of attacks even more devastating.
In a majority of cases, dog attacks are due to the negligence of the owner who does not adequately take measures to protect others, including friends and strangers. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that nearly 4.7 million attacks related to dog bites occur each year. A significant number of these attacks involve young children, with at least half of all incidents happening to kids.
High rates of bite attacks happen to young kids aged between 5 and 9-years-old. Even more shocking, nearly two-thirds of all injuries involve children who are under 4-years-old. A majority of these attacks include injuries to the neck and head area. Statistics show that boys experience dog bites significantly more than girls, making young boys the group most likely to suffer severe injuries as a result of a dog bite. The same gender split is true for adults, with men being more likely to suffer from these injuries than women. No matter the victim’s age or gender, the lawyers at Torgenson Law believe that all dog bite victims should be informed of their rights and how to seek the compensation they deserve and are entitled to following a dog attack.
Arizona Laws Involving Dog Attacks
The law in the state of Arizona asserts that owners of dogs are liable for attacks and the injuries that are caused by their animals. If you were involved in a dog attack and bitten while in public or while lawfully on another’s property, you can file a claim against the owner of the dog or another animal. For example, if the incident occurred on another individual’s property, while walking the dog, or if the animal was wandering without the owner, then the owner of the animal is liable for the event in question.
However, there are certain conditions which can affect your ability to file a claim against the owner of the animal. Under certain circumstances, the owner would not be liable for any injuries suffered. The owner is not liable if the victim was trespassing, provoking the dog in any way, or acting generally aggressive toward the animal or its owner. It is imperative that you understand your rights as a victim of a dog bite attack, and the lawyers at Torgenson Law will work diligently on your behalf to ensure that you are fully and fairly compensated for the injuries you sustained in the dog bite attack.
Leash Laws in the City of Phoenix
Outside of the legislation that is enforced in Arizona, Phoenix has its own laws that are related to the leashing of dogs in public. These requirements are specific to the city of Phoenix and need to be known before filing a claim. This municipal code states that dog owners must:
- Not allow their dogs or animals to run freely without a leash. This includes whether the animals are on their own property or in a public area.
- Provide adequate measures to confine the animal on their own property. If the owner does not comply with this measure, they may be liable for injuries sustained when their dog attacks another individual.
- Keep their dog on a leash no longer than six feet when the animal is not confined.
- Supervise and observe the dog at all times.
- Adorn their dog with a collar that has a license and identification attached, once the dog reaches three months of age. This rule is mandatory for all dog owners.
Violations of these regulations can result in fines or penalties that apply to a class one misdemeanor, depending on which portion of the law was breached by the owner. However, these rules do not apply in a designated dog park and, depending on the rules of the dog park, dogs may be allowed to run freely without a leash.
Statute of Limitations
There are specific statutes of limitations in the state of Arizona regarding claims involving dog bites or attacks.
In some cases, you do not have to provide evidence that the dog owner had prior knowledge that the dog or animal was prone to aggression or biting. In these cases, you have just one year from the date of the incident to file an accident claim.
In other circumstances, you must provide evidence that the dog or animal owner had prior knowledge that his dog was prone to aggression and biting. When this is the case, you have two years to file an accident claim.
If you have been attacked by a dog and sustained injuries as a result of that attack, it is crucial that you contact the experienced legal professionals at Torgenson Law as soon as you have received medical treatment for your injuries. Our experienced personal injury attorneys specializing in dog bite attacks at Torgenson Law are here to help you assess your accident claim to help determine which statute of limitations is relevant. Call us to discuss your injury today.
Dog Attack Cases and Third Party Liability
You might think that assigning liability in a dog bite case would be a simple process. Victims assume that the owner must always pay, no matter the conditions. However, our knowledgeable and skilled dog bite lawyers at Torgenson Law understand that these cases are often much more complex than they seem. One option involves third party liability, and this usually relates to workers’ compensation benefits and rights.
For example, when a dog bites a worker from the postal service or a city meter reader, worker’s compensation can be initiated in the claim process. This pathway offers the victim payment before the resolution of a personal injury case. Utilizing this type of compensation in combination with a legal claim can be extremely confusing. Without adequate legal guidance and representation, the victim often experiences difficulty when attempting to understand whether he or she is getting what they deserve from their claim. In these situations, it is essential to be represented by an attorney who understands the ins-and-outs of personal injury laws in Arizona as they pertain to dog bite attacks.
The Costs and Expenses Involving a Dog Bite Injury
Many people love dogs tremendously, and they can be great friends and companions. However, this does not mean that they can’t be dangerous. Regardless of their size, dogs can cause severe injuries because they have incredibly sharp teeth and generate a very powerful bite due to the strength of their jaws by chomping down alone. The strongest dogs can bite with the force of over 700 pounds per square inch (PSI). To put that into context, the average car tire will have a pressure of 32 PSI. In addition, a dog’s mouth can be a breeding ground for bacteria that can cause serious infections to develop from a bite.
Depending on the size of the dog itself, these attacks can leave terrifying, severe, and even life-altering injuries. Individuals who have experienced dog attacks can suffer many potential health concerns, including:
- Deep wounds and cuts;
- Damage to the muscles and tendons;
- Broken or fractured bones;
- Spinal cord damage;
- Neck injury;
- Blood loss;
- Infected wounds; and
- Anxiety and fear of animals.
Dog attacks can be incredibly violent, which can create long-lasting mental trauma and high anxiety for dog bite victims. This leads to difficulties in the recovery process, as individuals must learn to cope and deal with this emotional anguish. The experienced Phoenix personal injury attorneys at Torgenson Law are here to provide you with the guidance necessary to navigate these concerns and recover from these traumatic events.
Knowing the Compensation You Can Receive from a Dog Attack
All financial loss damages that are the result of the attack, as well as future losses caused by the incident, can be compensated for with the help of a skilled personal injury attorney. The sources of financial compensation can include current and future hospital and medical costs, physical and emotional suffering, scarring and disfigurement, long-term injury, lost income, psychological treatment for recovery, and more.
The seasoned and dedicated personal injury lawyers at Torgenson Law can help you get the compensation that you are entitled to for any damages incurred as a result of the dog attack. We want you to know we are here to help you in your time of need.
Will the Dog Owner’s Insurance Policy Cover It?
Claims involving dog attack injuries are often covered under the owner’s homeowners insurance policy, but this is not always the case. Many times, homeowners policies will only cover animal attacks that occur on the owner’s property or at their home. Some policies will not cover certain, more aggressive breeds, such as pit bulls or rottweilers. It is also possible that the owner will not have any type of insurance. All these facts must be considered when filing a personal injury claim.
Do Not Talk to an Insurance Company Without Representation
It is always a mistake to trust in an insurance company to provide you with a financial settlement that is worthy of the injuries sustained. Insurance companies are not interested in your wellbeing. Their main priority is making money. More often than not, insurance companies will try to lowball you and offer you significantly less money than you will need to completely recover from your injuries. They will offer you this substantially-underwhelming amount because it is in their best interest to do so; their primary concern is their own wellbeing.
Due to their self-concerned perspective, you should never speak with a member of the insurance company without proper legal representation. It is vital that you hire a trusted legal consultant who is experienced in claims related to personal injury law and dog attacks. Torgenson Law is here to provide you with the expertise you need to get the most out of your personal injury settlement.
Consult with an Experienced Dog Bite Attorney in Phoenix
To successfully win the compensation that you deserve and are entitled to, you need to hire a law firm who cares about your wellbeing and has the skills and resources needed to go up against these insurance companies. By filing a claim that places liability on the at-fault party who is responsible for the dog attack, we can ensure that your rights are protected.
The claim process can be incredibly complex, and it is easy to underestimate the final cost of all injuries sustained during the incident and the subsequent recovery. You need to find the right Phoenix attorney to represent you and your needs. The personal injury lawyers at Torgenson Law will provide you with the necessary guidance to get all restitution that you deserve.
Nearly 800,000 dog attacks a year require some medical attention. The statistics show how severe dog bite attacks can be, but you are not alone. If you or a loved one has been the victim of a dog attack, contact our experienced Phoenix dog attack lawyers at Torgenson Law today to get started with your claim. We can hold the at-fault party responsible for the attack, and we are here to help you in your time of need. Call us today at (602) 833-2774.