If you or a loved one were bitten by a dog, you may be able to collect for your medical expenses, lost income, pain and suffering, and other losses. Many dog owners have insurance to cover these claims. Our knowledgeable Massachusetts dog bite lawyers do not charge any fees unless you obtain an award or settlement. Call us 24/7 at (401) 200-4060 or fill out a contact form online for a free (no obligation) consultation.
Massachusetts Dog Bite: What You Need to Know
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Am I Entitled to a Settlement for My Dog Bite Injury?
If you were injured by a dog bite, you may be entitled to compensation. In Massachusetts, dog owners may be held legally accountable for the actions of their dogs. This means that if a dog bites someone, the owner could be held responsible by paying for the injuries suffered.
A dog bite settlement will compensate the injured victim for their medical costs, lost wages, scarring, pain and suffering, mental anguish, and other losses. Our experienced Massachusetts dog bite lawyers have settled many dog-bite cases over the past 30 years, and we know how to get you the compensation you deserve. For a list of our best dog bite settlements, click here.
Is It Worth Suing for a Dog Attack?
If you were injured in a dog attack, you deserve compensation for your injuries. Hiring an experienced dog bite lawyer can greatly increase your chances of winning your case or being awarded a larger settlement. Whether you are paying medical bills or having to look at scars that are a constant reminder of the pain and suffering the attack caused you, you may be entitled to compensation. Dog bite settlements average around $50,000 and can be as high as hundreds of thousands of dollars depending on the case and the extent of the victim’s injuries. See some of our largest settlements for dog bite injuries here.
What Is My Dog Bite Case Worth?
It is always dependent upon the circumstances of your case. Losses that occurred due to your injury will be factored in when all evidence has been collected and your medical treatment has concluded. Read more.
How Long Do I Have to File a Dog Bite Claim in MA?
In Massachusetts, under Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 260 section 2A, the statute of limitations for filing a dog bite claim is three years. You will have three years from the time of the incident to file personal injury and property damage claims. However, handling dog bite cases can be tricky, so it is advised that you contact a Massachusetts dog bite lawyer as soon as you can, so you have enough time to make your best case.
What Is Our Legal Fee?
Our firm charges the standard contingency fee in personal injury cases, which is 1/3 of your settlement or award. Our fee is contingent on us obtaining compensation for you. Until we win or settle your case, you are not charged.
Who Is Responsible for My Dog Bite Injury?
Massachusetts general law §155 provides that dog bite victims can hold the dog’s owner liable for their injuries and damages so long as the victim was not trespassing or engaging in another tort (assault, property damage, etc.) or provoking the dog when the dog attacked.
Massachusetts is a strict liability state when it comes to dog bites. This means that the dog’s owner is automatically responsible for the harm their dog causes and the victim does not have to prove owner negligence in order to get compensation for their injuries.
Most of the time, the dog’s owner will be responsible for the injury their dog caused. However, in some cases, a landlord can also be held liable for a dog bite if they knew a tenant had a dangerous dog. Read more here.
Massachusetts Dog Bite Statistics
Children under the age of 15 are the top demographic to fall victim to dog bites in Massachusetts. Read more here. Over 4.5 million people are bitten by dogs in the U.S. every year. Every day, almost 1,000 Americans require emergency medical treatment for dog bites.
I Was Bitten by a Service Dog. What Should I Do?
In this case, an experienced dog bite lawyer can help the victim to prove that the dog’s owner is responsible by gathering information about the dog’s behavioral expectations.
Dogs may attack for a variety of reasons. Dogs of any breed, age, or size could bite. It is always a good idea to look for behavioral signs that the dog may be preparing to bite or attack. Some reasons a dog bites include:
- Defending its territory or itself
- Protecting things that are valuable to them, like food, their owner, a toy, or their puppies
- They aren’t feeling well due to sickness or injury
- They’ve been startled or scared
What Should I Do After a Dog Bite Injury?
- Seek medical attention for injuries caused by the dog bite. Make sure to discuss treatment options with your doctor. If necessary, this may involve being tested for rabies, treating cuts and puncture wounds, and assessing mental harm, among other injuries. Read more.
- Report the dog bite as soon as possible following the incident. Report a Massachusetts Domestic Animal Bite Here.
- Take pictures of the scene, of your injuries, and, if possible, of the dog that injured you.
- Get the dog owner’s homeowner’s insurance information. An experienced attorney can help with this kind of insurance search.
- Take note of any physical and mental injuries you are suffering, as well as the financial effects that you are experiencing, such as lost wages and medical bills.
- Contact an experienced MA dog bite attorney to discuss whether you could file a claim to receive compensation for your injuries. Our MA dog bite lawyers are here to support you every step of the way. Contact us now to discuss your dog bite case.
What Are Some Common Dog Bite Injuries?
Many possible injuries can result from a dog bite. The most common injuries include bruising, cuts, puncture wounds, and scarring. However, the emotional damage caused by a dog bite can also take its toll on a victim and have long-term consequences. Scarring can lead to a great deal of emotional pain, serving as a daily reminder of what happened. Other common injuries include the following:
- Anxiety, Depression and Phobia of Dogs
- Broken Bones
- Pain and Suffering
- Wrongful Death
How Severe Is My Dog Bite Injury?
There are six main grades of severity of dog bite injuries, each of which our dog bite lawyers are equipped to address in a personal injury suit.
- Grade 1: Scratched and/or bruised skin
- Grade 2: Signs of biting but no puncture wounds
- Grade 3: Puncture wounds (skin is broken)
- Grade 4: Deep puncture wounds that tore tissue and possibly caused nerve damage
- Grade 5: Multiple separate bite puncture wounds (usually from a sustained attack)
- Grade 6: Fatality
What Is the Typical Treatment for Dog Bites?
The treatment will depend on the severity of your injury. As stated previously, it is important to seek medical attention right after a dog bite. Talk with your doctor about your best treatment options. Common injuries caused by dog bites include cuts and puncture wounds. Treatment for these injuries could require stitches or even reconstructive surgery to repair. Dog bite injuries can often leave scars. If the injury is on your face, plastic surgery may be required to lessen the visibility of the scar. Severe injuries can cause permanent muscle damage, tissue damage, or broken bones, which usually require extensive treatment and ongoing therapy.
Emotional damage, like anxiety, depression, fear, and PTSD, may also require ongoing professional treatment. These conditions can negatively impact a person’s daily life. Some dog bite victims are unable to socialize with friends who own dogs, go out on walks, or visit public places that may have dogs, such as parks, because of the trauma the bite caused. These mental injuries have a stronger effect on children in particular. Childhood is a time to develop mentally and socialize. However, dog bites can greatly alter a child’s mental and emotional state. It can take years to break out of this traumatic experience that left an imprint on their minds.
Contact an Experienced Massachusetts Dog Bite Lawyer
Our Massachusetts dog bite lawyers and legal staff have the experience and knowledge to help you with your dog bite claim. You may be entitled to compensation for your medical expenses, lost income, and pain and suffering, among other losses. There is no fee unless we obtain a settlement or award on your behalf. Call us toll-free at 1-(401) 200-4060 or fill out a contact form online for a free (no-obligation) case evaluation.