Utah Dog Bite Lawyers
The experienced Utah dog bite lawyers at Swenson & Shelley can help you recover maximum compensation for your injuries. In the United States, so many people consider dogs as a man’s best friend. When a dog bites you, it’s likely that you won’t share that sentiment. Odds are you didn’t walk away with a little impact bruise from the dog bite. When a vicious animal attacks you, there is a lot of damage they can do and if you are a victim of this, you deserve compensation for what happened to you. We are here to guide you through every step of your dog bite case. Please call our Utah dog bite lawyer today to set up a free consultation.
How to Get Full Compensation
When you ask for compensation, you may be hesitant to bring a dog bite claim. There is a common misconception about these cases. It’s likely that you were at someone’s house that you know when you were attacked by their dog. What you should know is that you are not really going to be bringing your dog bite claim against your friend. You are bringing the claim against their insurance company.
In Utah, there is a shared fault rule that you we follow. What that means is that if you are 50% or more at fault, you will be barred from getting compensation. If you are less than 50%, your compensation will be reduced by what percent you are found to be at fault for. Our job is to make sure you get the most compensation possible.
Utah Dog Laws
In Utah, there are specific rules in place that require dog owners to act responsibly to protect others. When these rules are not followed, the owners can and should be penalized for acting irresponsibly with their dog.
Properly Restraining Dogs
Owners are required to always have restrained control of their animals. When at home, pets should be in a fenced-in area, on a secure lead, or in the house. Pets should never be allowed to roam around, especially if they are not supervised. Most dog bites occur when a dog is unrestrained, so it is important for all owners to adhere to dog restraint laws.
Veterinary Care Laws for Dogs
All dogs in the state of Utah must be up to date on vaccinations and have regular vet care. The most important vaccine for a dog to have in case of a bite is the rabies vaccine. This is because rabies can be transferred from dogs to humans and can be deadly if not treated in time. If a dog bites and the owner cannot provide proof that the dog has current vaccinations, serious legal action can be taken.
Stopping a Dog Attack
If a dog is attacking a person or other animal, the victim has every right to stop the dog from attacking. It is within the victim’s legal rights to use every force necessary, including injuring or killing the dog, to stop the attack. The owners of the aggressing dog have no legal standing to seek action against anyone who hurts or kills their dog in the effort to stop an attack.
Types of Dog Bite Injuries
As mentioned, these dog attacks can result in vicious outcomes. Your health is the most important thing after an incident. The possible types of dog bite injuries include:
- Nerve, tendon, and tissue damage
- Cuts and lacerations
- Fear of dogs
It is possible that these injuries are more than physical. Fear of dogs would be considered a damage, especially in children who were attacked. It would change their life forever if they had a permanent fear of dogs. Considering there is a dog in so many peoples’ homes, that would be a huge deal.
Avoiding Insurance Adjusters
Be warned that the insurance company for the dog owner is not your friend. They have a job to do and that involves reducing the amount of compensation they owe you or eliminating your claim altogether. Very soon after the attack, the insurance adjuster will reach out to you and ask you for a statement that will be recorded. You should never give them one as to avoid getting blamed for the incident. Instead, tell them that your lawyer will take over all communication.
Types of Dog Bite Claims
There are two different ways to handle dog bite cases in the court of law. The way the case will be handled varies greatly depending on the individual situation. No matter which of the two types of claims are being pursued, victims will have the best chance of acting against the dog’s owner by having a talented attorney in their corner.
If the victim can prove that the owner intentionally meant for their dog to attack, the victim would have a case for intentional tort. This includes owners “siccing” their dog on someone else or using their dog for the specific purpose of inflicting injury on another. While these cases are rare, they are taken very seriously and should be tried to the fullest extent.
The best route to take is to claim strict liability. This does not require proof that the dog has bitten before or is dangerous. Under strict liability, there are no second chances. The victim of the dog bite is owed compensation from the owners of the dog.
What to Do After You Are Bit
There are several extremely important things that you need to take into consideration after you have been bit by a dog. The top priority is your well-being. Do not delay getting to a doctor as there may be a chance of infection. You also run the risk of having any of your injuries get worse if you do not see a doctor in a timely manner. You may not need to get on an ambulance or go to the emergency room, but you should be planning on at least heading to an urgent care or getting in with your primary physician right away.
What is also important at the scene of the incident is to collect as much evidence as possible to ensure you have a strong case. Having the police come get record makes everything more certain, so that is a good idea to have them come and file a report. You can also do your own evidence collection. That can be photos and videos of the scene and the surrounding area. Perhaps you can take a photo of a broken gate that the dog got out of. You should also ask the owner of the dog or whoever is handling the animal if it is up to date on its vaccinations.
Call Our Utah Dog Bite Lawyers Today for a Free Consultation
When you or a loved one is bit by a dog, do not hesitate to give our office a call. Our experienced Utah dog bite lawyer will be there for you to guide you through your injury claim and help you get the fullest and fairest amount of compensation. You deserve to be fully reimbursed for all of the damages this incident has cost you. Remember, you are not bringing a claim against the person who owns the dog. If they are your friend, don’t feel guilty about pursuing this claim. Their insurance is going to be compensated you for the hurt you have had to endure. You owe it to yourself to seek what is fair and just. Please call our office today to set up a free initial consultation and see what your next steps should be. We are happy to take your call and get the ball rolling for you.