Arizona Dog Bite Lawsuits
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Dogs are often called “man’s best friend,” but unfortunately this is not always the case. Millions of people are bitten by dogs annually throughout the US. It has been reported that every day, nearly 1,000 people require emergency care treatment for serious dog bite injuries.
Dog bites can cause very serious – and at times permanent – physical injuries. Additionally, the victim is often left emotionally traumatized. If you or a loved one has suffered significant injuries due to a dog bite in Arizona, you may have legal recourse.
The idea of pursuing a legal claim in regard to a dog attack may seem overwhelming, but the personal injury lawyers at Phillips Law Group can make your life easier. With decades of combined experience, our compassionate legal team is dedicated to defending the legal rights of personal injury victims and their families.
It is our desire to make quality legal services affordable to everyone. We provide our legal services on a contingency fee basis, which means there are no upfront legal fees for our work, and you only have to pay us if and when we recover fair compensation on your behalf.
Contact an experienced dog bite lawyer at Phillips Law Group as soon as possible. The sooner we review your case, the sooner we can put our legal resources to work for you. You can call us at (602) 222-2222 or fill out our online form to speak with a member of our legal team.
Arizona Dog Bite Laws
In Arizona, dog bites are subject to strict liability. A.R.S. § 11-1025 (A). This means that the owner can be found liable for your injuries even if the dog had never bitten anyone before or if the owner did not know that the dog was potentially dangerous.
In order to bring a dog bite lawsuit under the statute, the victim must be able to prove that:
- His or her injury was caused by the dog bite
- The victim suffered the injury while he or she was in a public place or lawfully on private property
There are exceptions to the victim’s right to recover damages in a dog bite lawsuit:
- The dog owner is not liable if it is found that the victim provoked the dog
- The dog owner is not liable if the victim was trespassing on his or her property. However, in such cases, the owner may be found liable for failing to clearly post warning signs of a vicious dog on the property
In addition, Arizona has fairly strict leash laws. In general, dogs are not permitted to be left unrestrained in public areas. In such instances, if a dog is running free and bites someone, the owner or handler could be held responsible under common law negligence in addition to the dog bite statutes that were broken.
Types of Injuries Sustained in Dog Bite Incidents
All dog bites should be taken seriously. Injuries can range in severity from minor cuts and abrasions to inflicting life-altering physical and emotional harm. Some injuries can lead to serious complications.
Physical and psychological injuries can include:
- Scrapes, bruises, and rashes
- Puncture wounds
- Bone fractures
- Torn ligaments
- Nerve damage
- Bacterial infections
- Viral infections
- Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
If you have been the victim of a dog bite that has significantly impacted your quality of life, it is in your best interests to reach out to a personal injury attorney experienced in such lawsuits. The lawyers at Phillips Law Group can help you to establish your claim and regain your peace of mind.
What Steps to Take After a Dog Bite
After a dog bite, you should seek immediate medical attention. You will also want to document the incident as best as possible.
After you have received medical care, it would be wise to:
- Contact police
- Get the contact information for the dog’s owner or handler
- File a report with your local animal control agency
- Get the names and contact information of any witnesses to the incident
- Take picture of the wounds caused by the dog bite
Having this information will make the legal claims process easier. Further, it will help your attorney in evaluating your case and deciding what your best legal recourse is.
Recovering Damages in a Dog Bite Case
The amount of material compensation that you may be able to recover in a dog bite case will depend on the extent of your injuries, your likelihood of recovering, and whether you will be able to return to your job, among other factors. You may be able to recover damages for both economic and personal losses.
These may include:
- Past, present, and future medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Reduced earning capacity
- Pain and suffering
- Reduced capacity to participate in normal activities
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Scarring and disfigurement
- Emotional trauma
- Counseling and therapy
- Wrongful death
An experienced personal injury lawyer can help you attain restitution for these and other damages if you have been the victim of a serious dog bite.
Potential Sources of Recovery in a Dog Bite Case
At times, people hesitate to file a dog bite claim when the dog belongs to a friend, relative, or neighbor. Understandably, people want to maintain good relationships with those they are close to.
Generally, the insurance policy of the dog’s owner will pay for your damages. Insurance policies that cover dog bites frequently include renter’s insurance, landlord insurance, homeowner’s insurance, or business insurance. If the dog owner does not have an insurance policy that will cover your damages, they may have income or other assets that will be able to compensate you.
How a Personal Injury lawyer Can Help Arizona Dog Bite Victims
As a victim of a serious dog bite, you may be suffering physically and reeling emotionally. At Phillips Law Group, we are committed to helping our clients to recover fair compensation so that they can be made whole again after a dog attack. We will handle the entire legal process from beginning to end so that you can focus on your recovery.
In practice since 1993, our dedicated and knowledgeable legal team can assist you in resolving your case in several ways:
- Giving you reliable and sound legal advice
- Protecting you from hasty and unfair settlement
- Gathering evidence on your behalf
- Establishing all liable parties
- Calculating your past, present, and future damages
- Negotiating with the defendant and insurance companies
- Representing you in court if necessary
How to Avoid Missing Out on What You Need
If you or a loved one has been the victim of a dog bite in Arizona, it is critical that you take timely action to recover damages. Arizona has a relatively short statute of limitations for claims under the strict liability statutes, which include the state’s dog bite laws.
Thus, it is important for victims to consult with a lawyer and file their dog bite lawsuit as soon after the attack as possible. Failing to take timely action can result in missing some statutory deadlines and thus becoming ineligible to recover full compensation.
The legal team at Phillips Law Group has recovered hundreds of millions in compensation for accident victims throughout Arizona. Let us help you attain the restitution you deserve. Please contact one of our personal injury lawyers for a risk-free consultation today. You can call us at (602) 222-2222 or fill out our online form to speak with one of our attorneys.
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