A dog bite lawsuit can recover compensation for damages if you’ve been injured by a dog. Managing the fallout after a dog attack can be expensive. The average cost per claim rose 39% from 2012 to 2021 due to increased medical costs with a 2.2% increase in the number of dog bite claims from the previous year.
When you’ve been injured by a dog, the dog owner is responsible for your injuries but a dog bite lawsuit in New Jersey may be needed to pay for your recovery. You need a dog bite lawyer that thoroughly understands dog bite laws.
There are many misconceptions about the law surrounding dog bite attacks, especially since every state and some localities have their own relevant statutes. Phrases like “one free bite” and “history of viciousness” are thrown around a lot by people who don’t have a firm understanding of the law.
Of course, David J. Cowhey possesses an exceptionally firm understanding of the law governing dog bite attacks and the resulting injuries. This page will provide some vital information for you regarding New Jersey’s laws, but the best way to decide on the proper course of action is to arrange a consultation with our attorney.
Here’s the reality of New Jersey’s laws: “one free bite” and “history of viciousness” are irrelevant here. Instead, the important legal phrase to keep in mind is “strict liability.”
We talk in more detail about strict liability in our page on a dog owner’s responsibilities, but the core of it is that a dog owner is responsible for any injuries his or her dog causes to a legally present victim. Regardless of the dog’s history or any precautions the owner might have taken, he or she is liable for the attack.
There are some exceptions to this, including trespassing and alleged provocation. Absent these factors, liability is not debatable in dog bite cases.
This does not mean these cases are easy or that you can handle them yourselves. Quite the opposite. Determining liability is just the first step, and it’s also the easiest. It’s what comes next that matters.
Any compensation you are awarded will be determined by a couple factors. First is the extent of your injuries. More severe injuries require greater expenditures to treat. You need a dog bite lawyer who understands the severity of your injuries and has experience working with relevant medical professionals to evaluate the extent of the physical damage.
Second, you have to deal with the insurance companies. Settlements and jury awards in our cases are not paid out by the dog owner him or herself. Instead, it’s an insurance company that makes these payments. This is a good thing, because it means an entity with resources is accountable, but it also means an entity with resources might fight you.
Our New Jersey dog bite attorney understands the state’s dog attack laws. He understands the severity of the injuries you’ve suffered. And he understands how to successfully battle insurance companies on your behalf.
If you live anywhere in the state of New Jersey and you’ve been the victim of a dog bite attack, you need a lawyer with deep experience in these cases. Please call David J. Cowhey at 609-283-5636 or contact us online for a free consultation.