Bismarck Dog Bite Injury Attorneys
Get Compensation for your Dog Bites Injury in Bismarck, Burleigh County, and across North Dakota
Anybody, adult or child, can be traumatized by the injuries and scarring from a dog bite. As much as we can forget it sometimes, dogs are predators, and even a familiar dog, like a friend’s pet, can bite if provoked enough. Whether you know the dog or it belongs to a stranger, victims of dog bites have the right to pursue compensation for their injuries in North Dakota. But you need to act quickly after the injury to protect both your legal rights and your health.
Insurance companies will often seek to mitigate their payments to you. They will fight to sway the court’s opinion and keep you from getting full and fair compensation. If you need help covering medical expenses related to a dog bite, the experienced attorneys at Sand Law may be able to help. We serve the city of Bismarck as well as Burleigh County, and the entire state of North Dakota.
Common Dog Bite Damages
Depending on the severity of the bite, you can be eligible for a variety of damages. While circumstances vary, here is a general list of damages that you may be able to pursue in the event of a dog bite injury:
- Payment for medical bills
- Future medical expenses that may be related to the bite injury
- Pain and suffering from the trauma of the event
- Punitive damages against the at-fault party; in this case, the owner of the dog
Insurance companies will look for any way to avoid paying out for damages like these, and will likely seek to prove you were the cause of the bite by implying you provoked the dog, and thus are responsible. Sand Law’s attorneys can help make your case solid and prove that you were not at fault for your injury.
Who Can Be Held Responsible for a Dog Bite?
The Owner of the Dog
Dog owners have a responsibility to ensure that their pets are well trained and socialized to get along with humans. Some dogs, however, have timid personalities or a fear of humans other than their owners. Most dog bites happen because the dog feels threatened or otherwise uncomfortable, and it is the owner’s responsibility to keep an eye on their pet. If a dog seems like it may bite due to feeling threatened, they should move it to another room until it is safe to let it out, or otherwise remove it from the threatening situation.
A Dog Sitter
Sometimes owners have to leave their pets with sitters or caretakers while away for extended periods of time. When this happens, they will often need to leave instructions for taking care of the dog relating to food and activity habits. If a sitter neglects those instructions, it can make the animal agitated and stressed, increasing the chances it may lash out and bite someone.
Dogs require a level of physical activity to stay healthy, and daily walks are an essential part of that. During such times, however, dogs need to be kept on a leash, as the often chaotic sights, sounds, and smells of the outside world may agitate them. The same goes true for dog parks, where the presence of so many other animals may cause a dog to become stressed out, leading to aggressive behavior. It falls on the owner of the dog, or the provider of the walking service if that’s the case, to be familiar with the animal in their care and keep it under control.
Any of the above people can be held responsible if a dog bites you. While sometimes dogs develop aggressive personalities by nature, in most cases, dogs raised in human homes are well socialized and friendly. However, even the most well-trained dog has a limit before it becomes uncomfortable, and if it’s early warning signs are ignored, it may lash out and bite. It’s on owners and caretakers to watch their pets for signs of them being uncomfortable, and take steps to address it before the dog lashes out.
The “One Bite” Rule
One important thing to keep in mind about dog bite legislation in North Dakota is that the state doesn’t have any specific statute in state law about bites – only using dogs as hunting partners. Thus, the idea informally known as the one-bite rule is often the go-to legal route when it comes to proving negligence on the part of a dog owner.
To put it simply, the one bite rule gives a dog owner one “free” bite. It assumes that the first time a particular dog bites someone, the owner had no idea it would do so, and thus is not responsible for that particular bite. However, if the dog ever bites another person again, the owner can be held liable. Once an owner knows that the dog might bite someone, it is their responsibility to mind the animal and keep it out of situations where another bite might occur.
The exception to the one-bite rule is if the owner had reason to believe the dog may bite beforehand. A scenario where this would apply would be something like if the dog had a previous owner who documented aggressive behavior, and whoever took ownership of the dog after the original owner knows about that behavior but does nothing to mitigate it.
Common Injuries Caused by Dog Attacks
Dog bites can cause all different types of injuries, each of which can be painful, debilitating, costly, and emotionally damaging. Some common injuries from a dog attack, include:
- Crushing Injuries
- Nerve Damage
- Brain Injury
- Death from Dog Attacks
Experienced Dog Bite Lawyers in Bismarck, North Dakota
When it comes to injuries resulting from an unprovoked dog bite anywhere in Bismarck or Burleigh county, you need an experienced team to advocate for you. You deserve compensation for the harm you’ve suffered as a result of a pet owner’s negligence, and our team is the best to help you get it. Contact our experienced dog bite lawyers at (701) 609-1510, or fill out our online contact form today.