Dog owners should always keep their pets under control. Failing to do so could put others in danger, especially if the dog has a history of aggression. If you were bitten by someone else’s dog, then you should take action now to pursue compensation.
The Indianapolis dog bite lawyers of Christie Farrell Lee & Bell can help you discover the best way forward after being bitten by an aggressive dog. You could have the option to file a claim or lawsuit against the dog’s owner, but you should also expect them to fight back. With us by your side, you can prepare a dog bite injury claim without stress.
Dial (317) 245-3709 now. Our injury firm has 40+ years of experience.
What to Do After a Dog Bite
The steps that you take after being bitten by a dog are important. You will be setting the foundation for a dog bite injury claim should you decide to file one later.
Let our attorneys know if you did the following after the dog bite:
- Received medical attention: All dog bites should be treated with medical attention. Minor bites that do not break the skin can be treated with first aid like a cold compress. If the bite breaks the skin, even in small amounts, then you need to go to urgent care because a dog bite can cause infections and rabies. If the bleeding is profuse, then emergency medical attention is required.
- Collected contact information: You will need to get contact and identifying information from the dog’s owner. Write down the information from any state-issued ID that you can. Depending on where the dog attack occurred, the insurance policy that you can file against will vary, so it might be difficult to figure out what insurance information to collect. Do not worry. Our attorneys can help decide what insurance policy or policies apply to your case.
- Photographed the dog: Don’t forget to get pictures of the dog that bit you if you can. You won’t be able to get an ID card for the dog, obviously, so you will have to document it in other ways.
Injuries & Trauma Caused by Dog Bites
A dog bite can cause severe, life-changing, or life-threatening injuries in only a matter of seconds. We can work with medical experts to uncover the extent of your injuries and how they might impact your life in the future.
Dog bites can cause these serious physical injuries:
- Deep lacerations
- Permanent scarring
- Broken bones
- Soft tissue damage
Many dog bite victims also suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) from the attack. They start to feel afraid of all dogs, even family dogs that they once trusted innately. If you are suffering from mental health difficulties caused by a dog attack, then we can factor that harm into the total compensation owed to you. After all, your mental health is just as important as your physical health.
Indiana One-Bite Rule
Indiana has a “one-bite” rule when considering liability in dog bite claims. This rule states that a dog owner can be excused from some or all liability the first time that their dog bites someone and if that dog never showed signs of aggression before. For example, if a dog has always been calm and kind to strangers but one day bit someone new and without warning, then the dog owner could argue that the one-bite rule should stop them from being liable for the resulting damages.
However, the court has some discretion over one-bite cases. It might be possible to argue that the owner should still be responsible for the plaintiff’s economic losses like medical costs and lost wages. Do not assume you don’t have a valid case just because the dog has apparently never bitten anyone before.
Possible Defenses to Dog Bite Claims
With our extensive experience, we can prepare your dog bite case for any defenses that the opposition might use. No matter the details that go into your case, we will know how to use evidence in your favor and argue that your compensation should be maximized.
Defense arguments against a dog bite claim can include:
- Provocation: A dog owner’s liability could be reduced if it is discovered that the plaintiff intentionally provoked the dog into becoming aggressive, such as pulling on its tail or taunting it even after the owner warned them to stop.
- Self-defense: A dog has the right to defend itself from undue harm just as a person does. If the plaintiff attacked the dog first and the dog bit them in self-defense, then the case could be weakened. The same is true if the dog bit someone who was trying to hurt its owner.
- Trespassing: Property owners are allowed to secure their properties with aggressive dogs if they keep a sign posted about the dog’s presence at entrances. If the plaintiff was trespassing when they were bitten, then it could reduce the dog owner’s liability.
How Our Dog Bite Lawyers Can Help
Are you struggling with the aftermath of a dog bite and the injuries it caused you? Adding legal responsibilities on top of everything would probably make things even more stressful for you. One of the main reasons that people hire our dog bite attorneys is to deal with the insurance company for them. We know how to build and advance a dog bite claim while completing all necessary interactions with the insurance company. There might be no faster way to take the stress of the situation off your shoulders than hiring us!
You can count on us to do the following and much more:
- Investigate the dog bite incident
- Calculate the damages owed to you
- Create a strong claim
- Negotiate or litigate on your behalf
Schedule a Free Consultation with Our Law Firm
Our Indianapolis dog bite attorneys have been fighting for the wrongfully injured in our community for more than 40 years. With so much depending on the outcome of your case, you should only entrust it to a team of our caliber. We are ready to fight for the money owed to you, whether it is $50,000 or $5 million!
Learn more about our legal counsel by contacting us online at any time.
Dog Bite FAQ
What breed of dog is considered dangerous?
Pit bulls are widely considered to be one of the most dangerous breeds of dogs. But this belief is not an absolute truth. Many pit bulls are friendly and would never hurt anyone. The most dangerous dogs are usually those who are raised to be dangerous. In this way, any breed of dog can be dangerous and cause a painful bite injury.
Does Marion County have a leash law?
A dog in Indianapolis or Marion County can’t be tethered outside and in public without close supervision from its owner. In other words, a dog on a leash, whether it is held by the owner or attached to a post or object, must be accompanied by its owner. When in public, dogs should be tethered and accompanied. However, Indiana does not have a wider leash law, which can complicate liability in some cases.
Is a dog bite claim filed against the dog owner directly?
If the dog’s owner has told you that they don’t have enough money to pay for your damages, even if they wanted to, then you would be right to be skeptical. Many dog bite claims are not filed directly against the owner’s finances. Instead, the claim can probably be filed against some sort of property insurance policy. For example, homeowner’s insurance policies will provide damages to visitors who were hurt due to the property owner’s negligence, which applies to dog attacks.
Will the dog be put down if I sue its owner?
Are you reluctant to file a dog bite claim because it might result in the dog being put down? You shouldn’t worry about what could happen to the dog when you should be concerned about what has already happened to you. Furthermore, the court will usually decide what to do about the dog and only if a criminal case arises due to the attack. The court could order the dog’s owner to always keep it securely in the backyard, for example. Dogs are usually only destroyed if they have a history of aggression or caused a catastrophic or fatal injury.