5 steps to take after a dog bite
- Identify the owner
Take down names and address of dog owner and the people who were looking after the dog at the time of incident. Make a note of any witnesses. This will be especially important if you do not know who the owner is at first. More info can be found at: car accident lawyers nyc.
This is important because if the dog was a stray you may have to have treatment for rabies. This can be painful and if you cannot identify an owner you may find it difficult to obtain any compensation for your injury.
Compensation from an owner should be made in order to cover any medical bills, lost income, any cosmetic surgery needed and to help you with any pain or suffering.
- Photograph any personal injury
Taking photos of any wounds before they are treated will show the full extent of damage caused. There will be no discrepancies if you have clear evidence.
Nearly all of us have camera phones these days. Use these to your advantage whenever something like this happens. Having a camera on you nearly all the time will mean as soon as the incident takes place you can begin gathering evidence for your case. If you are not too injured and are quick enough to react, videos of the situation and people involved could provide even further evidence in a court room.
- Seek medical attention
Even if your personal injury is small always seek medical attention for dog bites. It is not uncommon for dog/ animal bites to become infected which could lead to further complications. Every day in the U.S.A there are reportedly over 1000 people who require emergency treatment after being bitten by a dog!
It is also advisable if you have been bitten on the face to insist that you are seen by a plastic surgeon. Medical staff will do a good job treating your wound but stitches could leave lasting scars.
The medical staff that treat you may or may not decide that you need a rabies shot. Sometimes rabies will not be prevalent in the area you were bitten so it would be unnecessary. It can be a painful treatment so unless it is absolutely necessary it shouldn’t be given.
- Report the bite
There will be an agency in your jurisdiction which will be in charge of animal control. It is important you make your own report to these as soon as you are feeling up to it. The hospital will report it. However, the purpose of their reports are to keep statistics on injuries and diseases and not for ensuring dangerous dogs are kept under control.
The agency in charge of animal control in your area could be the animal control department of the city, the humane society or your local police department. By reporting the incident to animal control they will help establish who the owner of the dog is with you.
They will also interview any witnesses and help you do other things which will help you with your case. Perhaps most importantly they can ensure a potentially dangerous dog is off of the streets if needed.
In New York you can report a dog bite through The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. Fill out this form within 24 hours if you have been bitten by a dog.
- Consider hiring a personal injury attorney
Unfortunately only 1% of dog bite victims receive compensation. A good attorney will be able to present your case in the best possible way and give you the best possible chance.
Having a lawyer is more efficient and less stressful. Around 98% of personal injury cases are settled out of court. If you retain an attorney you can probably ensure the claim will be handled quicker and more efficiently.
An attorney will also be able to give a better estimate of how much your claim is worth. An experienced attorney will offer guides and key evidence to insurance companies. If an inexperienced person were to do this they risk not giving enough evidence or even giving the wrong information all together. Get your lawyer today by visiting: car accident attorney nyc .
Receiving a call from an insurance company
Eventually after you have taken all the correct steps after you dog bite incident you should receive a phone call from the dog owners’ insurance company. That is if they were insured!
The most important thing to remember when you receive this phone call is to not discuss money with them in any way. This is up to your attorney or insurance company. Click here.