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Seattle Dog Bite Cases: Owner Liability and Victim Rights

 Seattle Dog Bite Cases: Owner Liability and Victim Rights

Seattle has an extremely dog-friendly atmosphere with outdoor spaces and beautiful parks. However, dog owners need to ensure they have control over their animals and do not cause unreasonable harm to others.

If a dog bites you, it is imperative to understand your rights. Contacting our Seattle dog bite attorney can ensure you take the necessary steps toward protecting your legal rights and best interests.

Liability for Dog Bites in Seattle

Washington follows a strict liability approach when it comes to dog bites. Under RCW 16.08.040, dog owners are held responsible for injuries caused by their dogs, regardless of their history of aggression or the owner’s knowledge of it. Unlike some states that operate on a one-bite rule, Washington does not require a prior incident to establish liability.

In addition to strict liability, negligence can play a role in dog bite cases. Seattle dog owners are responsible for ensuring their pets are controlled and do not threaten others. This includes properly restraining dogs in public places, securing them within their property, and preventing aggressive behavior.

If a dog owner is found negligent in controlling or restraining their dog, they may be held liable for any resulting injuries. In Seattle, dogs must keep their pets on a leash in public locations. If owners allow their dogs to roam unleashed in a public space and an attack occurs, they could be considered negligent. It is important to note that Seattle has dog parks where dogs can run off-leash. However, it is still crucial that owners ensure the safety of others around them.

How to Handle a Seattle Dog Bite Case

If you are in the unfortunate situation of being bitten by a dog in Seattle, taking specific steps to protect your rights and ensure proper case handling is essential.

First, it is vital to seek medical attention immediately. Even if the bite seems minor, it is crucial to have a healthcare professional assess the injury and provide necessary treatment. Dog bites can lead to serious injuries and potential illnesses, including:

  • Puncture wounds
  • Lacerations
  • Fractures
  • Nerve damage
  • Tendon or ligament injuries
  • Abrasions
  • Contusions
  • Hematomas
  • Infections
  • Rabies exposure

For this reason, you must seek medical attention immediately to ensure your health is protected.

Next, you must gather information about the dog and its owner. You must obtain their contact details and relevant insurance information to file a claim. Take photographs of your injuries as soon as possible. These visual records can serve as valuable evidence in your case.

Finally, contact our dog bite accident attorney. We can help you better understand your rights as a victim.

Challenges in Dog Bite Cases

Several challenges may arise during your dog bite case. These include:

Problems Identifying the Dog Owner

In some instances, identifying the dog’s owner may pose a challenge, especially if the incident occurred in a public place. However, the responsible party can often be identified with the help of witnesses, surveillance footage, or other evidence. Our dog bite accident attorney will thoroughly analyze all available evidence and help you identify the owner.

Determining Liability in Shared Spaces

There are instances where dog bites occur, and multiple parties may share liability. Our Seattle dog bite attorney will help establish who was watching the dog and who owned the property where the attack occurred.

Defenses by Dog Owners

Dog owners may attempt to defend themselves against liability by claiming that you provoked the dog or trespassed onto their property. Our dog bite accident attorney can help counter these defenses with evidence and legal arguments.

Recovering Compensation for Your Damages

Our dog bite accident attorney will help you seek maximum compensation for your damages, including the following:

  • Medical Expenses: We will help you seek compensation for medical expenses resulting from the injuries. This includes immediate medical care, surgeries, medications, and necessary rehabilitation or therapy.
  • Lost Wages: If the injuries sustained from a dog bite result in you being unable to work, you may be able to recover compensation for lost wages. This includes both current and future earnings that are impacted by the injuries.
  • Pain and Suffering: You can pursue compensation for pain and suffering caused by the incident. This includes emotional distress, physical pain, and the overall impact the injuries have on your quality of life.
  • Property Damage: In some cases, a dog attack may damage property, such as torn clothing or damaged personal belongings. You may be entitled to compensation for these losses.

Call Our Seattle Dog Bite Attorney Now

If you or a loved one has been injured in a dog bite incident, seeking legal assistance from the Bernard Law Group can be invaluable. Our Seattle dog bite attorney will guide you through the complex and overwhelming legal process with compassion and dedication.

By understanding the necessary steps to pursue a claim, we can provide our clients with comprehensive support and work towards holding the responsible party accountable for their actions. With over $500 million recovered for past clients, let us help you obtain the compensation and justice you deserve. Contact our personal injury attorneys today for a free consultation.

You Pay No Fee Unless We Win.

Fill out our contact form for a free injury case consultation. We will call you back right away.

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