It is common for many dog bite victims not to report their injuries. Sometimes, they do not report because they fear what will happen to the dog. Other times, they know the owner and do not want to tarnish a relationship. When the bite seems minor, that situation can cause a victim not to report it. The issue is that you can do more harm than good by not reporting a dog bite. You should report the bite to the insurance company and authorities. You should also speak to the New Jersey Dog Bite Lawyer.
Studies show that over 80% of dog bites happen at home. This is a contributing factor in why victims do not report bites. When bites occur in the home, some of the following factors can also contribute to not wanting to report them:
Reporting that your friend or relative’s dog bites you is challenging. It can even seem overdramatic. However, the report of the dog bite immediately shows a paper trail. This will come in handy later on. Even a minor bite can lead to severe infections like staphylococcus.
When you file a dog bite report, it will help you get damages. If there is no report, it can hurt those recovery options. You may not realize the dog bite’s impact on your life until much later. You will start to face medical bills, permanent lifestyle changes, and loss of employment. You can recover some of these losses through an insurance claim or lawsuit. Without the injury report, there is no documentation of the following:
You can file an insurance claim or lawsuit without an official report. However, it will make the recovery process more challenging. It is best to speak to the New Jersey Dog Bite Lawyer for help getting financial recovery.
Since you do not have a report, you have less evidence for your injury claim. That also means the other party has the advantage. The insurance company will cite your lack of reporting as proof of minor injuries. They will argue you do not need medical attention or compensation. The insurance company can also bring up disputes for other things like:
You should prepare to fight about every detail of your injury when you don’t report it. This can become stressful and overwhelming. You can feel like you will never get justice. When you have a report, it makes it difficult for the other party to contradict it.
It might not matter if you suffer an injury and do not report it. When you get medical treatment, the doctor and medical staff can report your dog bite to animal control or the health department. They are not doing this to be mean or get anyone in trouble. Doctors must have all the information about the dog to treat you adequately. In some areas, they are also legally required to report dog bites. Relevant agencies use these reports to document and control rabies cases.
When you don’t report a dog bite, it puts others in danger. When you report a dog attack to authorities, they can investigate the incident. They can review their vaccination records and bite history when they find the dog. This can help them rule out whether the dog is dangerous. Sometimes, the court will intervene and rule on the dog’s status. When the dog is considered dangerous, owners may have to do the following:
These steps are not meant to harm the dog or anyone else. They are established so the dog does not injure anyone else. Victims often feel these steps are punishing the dog and its owner. The reality is they are protecting the community by implementing these rules.
When an owner follows these regulations, they are also protecting themselves. By taking proper steps, they have safeguards for liability. Additionally, they show the owner is taking action to prevent future incidents regarding their dog. Things can become tricky when a dog owner has taken these steps and you are an injury victim. Schedule a consultation with a dog bite lawyer in New Jersey to determine the next steps.
Dangerous dog laws have many intricacies that can impact the dog and its owner. The process will start when animal control believes a dog is dangerous. This can happen after the dog bites someone or during an investigation. Once the animal control officer determines the dog is dangerous, they will impound it.
Next, they will notify the court and the owner about their intentions. When the court reviews the facts, they will determine if the dog is dangerous and which restriction to impose. Owners will have a time limit for adhering to these restrictions. If they do not, they will pay fines nearing $1,000 for every day they are in violation.
One other possible outcome is the dog is put down. This happens when the dog is considered vicious after severely injuring someone unprovoked. It can also apply when the dog is part of an organized dog-fighting ring. This is not an outcome anyone wants; it happens rarely. If a dangerous or vicious dog attacks you, the result for the dog will be very different than the first time around.
However, every case is different, and you should work with the New Jersey Dog Bite Lawyer for assistance.
Every state has different dog bite laws, and these are constantly changing. In New Jersey, we have strict liability laws regarding dog bites. The dog owner is responsible when their dog bites someone on public property. They are also liable if the incident happens when the person is legally on private property. The dog’s history and owner’s knowledge of aggressive behavior will not matter in these instances.
This law applies to situations other than dog bites. It also applies when a person suffers an injury when a dog jumps on them. Different types of attacks may also fall under this premise. The laws surrounding dog bites can be complex, and you should get legal representation.
If you fail to report your dog bite and want to seek compensation later, you may be out of time. New Jersey has filing deadlines. You can file a claim under strict liability or personal injury. In both cases, the deadline is two years after the dog bites. Failure to report can muddy this deadline. You may think you have two years from a specific date when it was a different one.
Report your dog bite to the authorities immediately, then speak to a dog bite attorney in New Jersey. We can review your report and other relevant facts. Then, we will review applicable statutes and ensure you do not miss any deadlines. Our goal is to get you justice for your injuries and losses.
When you pursue an insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit, the goal is to recover compensation. You can request economic and noneconomic damages. They each have their benefits and cover a range of losses. Economic covers tangible, and noneconomic covers intangible losses.
Economic damages are items that have receipts or other documentation attached. You can seek recovery for things like:
Noneconomic damages are intangible, making them harder to prove. They often apply to cases where the person suffers significant lifestyle changes or a physical limitation. A prime example is losing a limb, resulting in your inability to participate in activities you once enjoyed. Some examples of noneconomic damage include:
Often, the payment for these losses comes from a homeowner or renter’s insurance policy. However, if the dog owner does not register their dog or have either of these policies, you can seek payment from other resources. Legal representation is essential to recover losses from any source.
When you wait to report your injuries, you can face significant pushback from insurers and dog owners. They will attempt to withhold compensation for and use your lack of reporting as proof. If the dog bites someone in the future, they can face additional hurdles trying to get justice because you did not report. You should report a dog bite to protect yourself and the community. You have one more call to make after you report a dog bite and get medical attention. Call us at 866-259-4377 for a free legal consultation or reach out via our web contact form.