Were you seriously hurt when bitten or even attacked by someone else’s dog/animal? If your answer is yes, you deserve to be compensated for the losses and damages related to your injuries.
Every year in the United States, thousands of people suffer severe and sometimes even fatal injuries when they are bitten or attacked by a dog or other animal. In Delaware, animal attacks that result in severe or even deadly injuries are, unfortunately, more common than most people may realize.
At Edelstein, Martin, & Nelson, we are completely dedicated to advocating for those who have been hurt by the negligence of a third party, and helping them recover the maximum compensation available for their injuries.
If you or someone you love were bitten by a dog and injured in Delaware, you have come to the right place. Our mission is to provide our clients with exceptional legal representation, and get the maximum compensation possible for their losses so they can focus on their health and well-being.
In Delaware, it is the duty of the dog owner to make sure that their dog is on a leash and/or in a secure, enclosed space in order to prevent any potential injuries. Unfortunately, regardless of the assumed temperament of any animal, they can be unpredictable.
Any dog owner who does not exercise reasonable care in preventing the injury of another person by failing to properly control their animal may be held liable by Delaware law for any injuries caused by the dog or animal.
At Edelstein, Martin, & Nelson, we have recovered millions of dollars for our clients who have been injured by uncontrolled dogs and other animals. We are here to fight for your legal rights so you can recover without having to worry about money. For your convenience, we are available around the clock in order to answer any/all legal questions you may have.
Dog Bite Statistics
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) tracks dog bite statistics in the United States. Here are a few key statistics from the CDC:
- Approximately 20% of dog bites require emergency medical care.
- Children are more at risk for dog bites than anyone else, and they are more likely to suffer serious injuries.
- People who have dogs in their homes are at a higher risk of getting bit.
- Dog bite-related deaths are more likely to take place among children, with children under the age of 2 being the most at-risk.
- Serious and even life-threatening infections can result from dog bites, such as rabies and tetanus.
If I was seriously injured by a dog bite/attack, how can an attorney help me recover?
Information provided by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) shows that approximately 4.5 million people are bitten by dogs every year in the United States. If you or someone you love suffered significant injuries when you were bitten or attacked by a dog, a Delaware dog bite lawyer is able to help you recover in numerous ways. Some examples of how an attorney can aid in your recovery include:
- Providing you with skilled legal representation:
A dog bite lawyer will represent you in any/all necessary legal affairs connected to the event that caused your injuries. These may include filing a lawsuit or negotiating a fair settlement with the dog owner’s insurance company.
- Utilizing their keen knowledge of the law to help you recover:
Laws concerning dog bites/attacks may be different from state to state. A Delaware dog bite lawyer from Edelstein, Martin, & Nelson has a thorough, working understanding of the personal injury laws in Delaware, including any/all specified regulations and rules concerning dog bites that may be applied to your case.
- Gathering valid evidence to support your claim:
A Delaware dog bite lawyer will take the lead in gathering solid evidence that will help support your case. This evidence may include medical records, witness statements, and pictures of your injuries.
- Calculating damages:
A dog bite attorney will consider the full spectrum of damages you may have suffered due to the dog bite/attack. Some damages that may have resulted from the incident include medical care costs, lost wages, pain, suffering, disfigurement, future medical care costs, lost earning capacity, and more. The amount of compensation you receive greatly depends on the severity of your injuries and the extent to which they have affected your life.
- Negotiating a settlement:
A dog bite lawyer in Delaware will aggressively negotiate with the dog owner’s insurance company in order to reach a full and fair settlement on your behalf. The settlement should cover all of the expenses and damages you incurred as a result of your injuries.
- Going to trial:
Sometimes, a fair settlement cannot be reached through negotiations between your lawyer and the insurance company. If this happens in your case, an attorney will uphold your legal rights by representing you in court.
Overall, a dog bite lawyer will help you navigate the often complicated legal system and help ensure that you are provided with the financial compensation you need and deserve during this difficult time. Additionally, an experienced attorney will offer you peace of mind knowing your case is in well-qualified hands.
Liability for a Dog Bite
Generally, liability for a dog bite/attack is usually placed on the dog owner. Oftentimes, the dog owner is responsible for any injuries their dog causes, despite whether they acted negligently in controlling the animal or knew that their dog had an affinity for biting.
Many states have laws known as “strict liability.” Under these types of laws, dog owners are held liable for any/all injuries their dog causes, even if they didn’t know or think their dog might bite someone.
Some exceptions to strict liability exist. For instance, the owner may not be held responsible if the injured victim was trespassing on the dog owner’s property, or provoking the dog. Also, if the individual who was bitten or attacked was an animal control officer or veterinarian who was interacting with the animal as part of their occupational duties, the strict liability law may not be applied and the owner may not be held liable for the injuries caused by their dog.
If you or someone you love were bitten by a dog, seeking medical attention immediately is extremely important. Also, you should report the incident to the authorities in order to properly and legally document it for future reference, especially if you plan to file a personal injury claim for compensation. It is also smart to consider talking to a personal injury lawyer in Delaware with extensive experience handling cases involving dog bites.
Negligence in a Delaware Canine Attack
When a dog owner fails to exercise reasonable care when controlling their pet, injuries can result. Negligence may be established if the owner of the dog was aware of or should have been aware of the fact that their dog was dangerous or was likely to bite, but did not take the proper safety precautions to keep the dog from hurting others.
In order to establish negligence in a dog bite claim, the injured party has to show the dog owner had the responsibility to demonstrate reasonable care in controlling their dog and neglected that responsibility. Also, you must prove that the act of failing to exercise reasonable care caused the injuries suffered by the plaintiff in the case.
For example, if a dog owner knows that their dog has previously bitten someone, and is rather aggressive, but they fail to keep the dog in a secure enclosure/on a leash, and the dog ends up biting another person, the owner may be found negligent.
If the victim (plaintiff) is able to establish negligence with the help of an attorney, they may be eligible to collect financial compensation for all damages related to their injuries. Sometimes, extra punitive damages may be awarded if the dog owner’s behavior was specifically egregious or reckless.
It’s important to note that every dog bite case is unique, and the specific facts of each case will determine the legal outcome. If you have been injured in a canine attack in Delaware, it’s recommended that you seek the advice of a personal injury lawyer who can help you understand your legal rights and options.
Is there a leash law in Delaware?
Delaware’s leash law does exist and was designed to help keep dog bites from happening, as well as to prevent other problematic incidents involving dogs and other animals that are not properly controlled by their owners. Pets need to be controlled when they are in public places, including on sidewalks, in parks, and in other areas where people are present.
In Delaware specifically, the law requires that dogs and any other animals are restrained by a leash that is 6 feet or less. The law also states that a responsible person must be in reasonable control of the dog/animal at all times.
Pet dogs in Delaware must also be properly vaccinated against rabies and licensed to their owners. These laws help to make sure that dogs/animals are identified accordingly and that they do not pose a threat to public safety and health.
The importance of following these laws for dog owners is paramount to aid in the prevention of dog bites and other injurious incidents that may occur when animals are not properly controlled by their owners. If you or someone you love were bitten or attacked by a dog in Delaware, it is highly advised that you seek help from a personal injury attorney who can help you to better understand your legal options and rights moving forward.
Delaware’s Dangerous Dog Law
The National Canine Research Council (NCRC) reports that certain dog breeds, such as rottweilers, pit bulls, and German shepherds, are more often involved in bite incidents than other breeds. No specific dog breeds are outlawed in Delaware. However, the state does have a dangerous dog law that allows for some dogs to be determined ‘potentially dangerous’ based on their temperament and behavior, despite what breed they are.
The law in Delaware states that a dog may be deemed a potential danger if it has chased, bitten, or attacked any person or domestic animal without being provoked. If a dog is labeled as potentially dangerous, it must be registered with a local animal control agency, muzzled and leashed while in public, and the owner must post reasonably visible warning signs on their property.
A dog becomes dangerous when it has caused serious injury or death to another person and/or their pet. Whoever owns a dangerous animal has to get liability insurance, keep the animal securely confined, and possibly microchip them.
An important point to remember is that breed alone does not define a dog’s behavior. Dog owners must be responsible and proactive in keeping their pets and the people who come into contact with them as safe as possible at all times. They can do this by including the proper socialization, training, and supervision needed to keep their dogs healthy and happy, regardless of breed.
Filing a Personal Injury Claim in a Dog Bite Case
Nothing can diminish the trauma that Delaware dog bite victims experience, or return their lives to exactly what they were prior to the dog bite injury. However, dog attack victims in Delaware can collect compensation from the dog owners who caused their injuries. Financial compensation can ease some of the stress you may be feeling if you were bitten by an uncontrolled dog.
The average dog bite claim usually amounts to more than $30k, and some claims may even be worth more. With decades of experience handling these types of claims, Edelstein, Martin, & Nelson have what it takes to get you the justice and financial compensation you need and deserve during this difficult time in your life.
What damages can I collect in a dog bite lawsuit?
If you or someone you love were injured when they were bitten or attacked by another person’s dog, working with a Delaware dog bite lawyer can help you get compensation for an array of damages, such as:
- medical care
- lost wages
- property damage
Speak With a Delaware Dog Bite Lawyer from Edelstein, Martin & Nelson
If you are seeking full and fair financial compensation for injuries you sustained due to another person’s dangerous, uncontrolled animal, call Edelstein, Martin & Nelson to schedule a free case evaluation. A lawyer from our firm is happy to help you learn more about your legal rights and options. Call 302-504-4815 as soon as you can or fill out our contact form on our website.