The beautiful Massachusetts village of Revere is an ideal place for pets, including dogs, with Revere Beach allowing dogs on its sands during certain months. Dogs, however, if not restrained, can cause serious injuries to anyone either by attacking someone or by its exuberant behavior.
If you were injured by a dog attack or bite, contact Revere dog bite lawyer Deborah Gold-Alexander who can advise you regarding the viability of your claim and your legal options.
Liability for a Dog Bite
Some states use the common law rule regarding dog bite liability, allowing a dog owner one-bite without liability unless the owner knew or had reason to know that the dog was likely to bite or attack someone. The owner may still escape liability in these states if the victim provoked the animal or knowingly exposed him or herself to injury.
Massachusetts has a strict liability law regarding dog attacks or bites. Under its law, a dog merely has to bite someone to hold the owner civilly liable. There is no requirement that the victim prove the owner was negligent or that the owner was aware of the dog’s vicious propensities or had bitten someone in the past. You merely have to show that you suffered an injury, that the dog was owned by the defendant, that you were not trespassing and did not provoke the dog. A victim who is under the age of 7 is legally presumed to be not trespassing unless other facts show otherwise.
The law also applies to whomever is caring for the dog including a dog walker if the person violates an ordinance relating to the dog such as allowing it to roam without a leash if not in a designated area where dogs can be off leash.
Injuries from a Dog Bite or Attack
Dog attacks can result in catastrophic injuries in some cases, including:
- Head injuries
- Severe hand injuries including damage to tendons and ligaments
- Puncture and tear wounds
- Broken limbs
- Psychological trauma
Many dog bite injuries occur to the throat or facial area. Ears, noses or mouths may be ripped or disfigured, requiring a number of painful reconstructive surgeries to repair the damage. Broken limbs can occur from being knocked over by the animal or while fleeing. A dog attack can be so traumatic as to cause Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, or PTSD, that can cause problems for some individuals that can last many months or years.
Damages in a Dog Bite Case
Injured claimants can usually collect compensation from the homeowner’s policy of the owner. If not insured, then the owner’s assets need to be examined for possible seizure following a judgment.
Damages in a dog bite case include:
- Past and future medical expenses
- Past and future income loss
- Lost earning capacity
- Cost of Rehabilitation
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of consortium by a spouse
- Permanent scarring
Your damages are proved by documentary evidence and testimony from yourself, family members and medical experts. Damages for pain and suffering, generally the largest award in a dog bite or other personal injury case, is determined by the nature and extent of your injury, if your face was disfigured, and how your injuries have affected or changed your daily life.
Consult Revere Personal Injury Lawyer Deborah Gold-Alexander
Although liability may not be an issue if you or a loved one was injured by a dog, many other issues do arise that can complicate or delay your receiving compensation including medical and wage loss matters. Negotiating with the dog owner’s insurer to get you the compensation you deserve must be supported by convincing evidence of the severity of your injuries that an experienced personal injury lawyer like Deborah Gold-Alexander can demonstrate. Contact her office today at (781) 289-4235 for your free, confidential consultation and have your injury claim assessed.