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Damages in Dog Bite Cases

Attorneys Helping Parties Pursue Damages in Dog Bite Cases in Syracuse, Rochester, and Upstate New York

Many people living in Upstate New York consider their pet dogs to be part of their families. While few people consider their dogs to be dangerous, even the friendliest dog can become aggressive and unexpectedly attack a person. Dog bites can cause substantial trauma, and dog bite victims have the right to seek damages in dog bite cases. If you were hurt by a dog bite, it is advisable to speak to an attorney about your options for seeking justice. The capable Syracuse personal injury attorneys of DeFrancisco & Falgiatano Personal Injury Lawyers possess the knowledge and resources needed to achieve favorable outcomes in claims against careless dog owners, and if you engage our services, we can assess the circumstances surrounding your harm and advise you of your options for pursuing damages. We frequently represent people in the pursuit of damages in dog bite case cases in Syracuse, Rochester, and throughout Upstate New York.

Injuries Caused by Dog Bites

Many dogs are well-trained, loveable, family pets who seem unlikely to bite anyone. Even the best-trained pets can unexpectedly attack, however, and when they do, they often cause substantial injuries. For example, victims of dog bites frequently sustain fractures, torn tendons and ligaments, muscle strain and sprains, and contusions. They may also suffer from hemorrhages, lacerations, puncture wounds, and brain trauma. Many people hurt by dog bites require extensive medical care, including hospitalization, surgery, and physical therapy. In some cases, dog bites cause permanent harm, like scars, and mental health issues like post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, and depression.

Damages in Dog Bite Cases

Typically, a plaintiff will have to prove the defendants’ culpability to recover damages in dog bite cases. Cases arising out of dog bites differ from other civil matters, though, in that the plaintiff generally does not have to prove negligence or fault. Rather, pursuant to New York dog bite law, which is a strict liability statute, a dog owner will be deemed strictly liable for damages caused by their dog attacking the plaintiff, but only if the owner knew of the dog’s dangerous propensities and such propensities were the cause of the plaintiff’s harm.

Knowledge of a dog's vicious propensities can be established not only by prior similar acts of aggression that the owner knew of but also by evidence of less overt signs, such as growling, snapping, or baring teeth, or even the owner's choice to restrain the dog in a particular manner. Even if a dog's behavior doesn't seem inherently dangerous or ferocious but still indicates a propensity to put others at risk of harm, it can be deemed to have vicious propensities, particularly if such behavior leads to the injury that prompts the lawsuit. Notably, though, strict liability may not be imposed if the plaintiff provoked the dog prior to the attack or if the dog was acting in defense of itself or its owners.

If a plaintiff establishes a dog owner’s liability for a dog bite, the owner will generally be responsible for any damages caused by their dogs. As such, people hurt by dog bites can usually recover compensation for any losses they incur. This may include the cost of any medical treatment, including physical therapy, and any other healthcare expenses directly related to the dog bite. If the attack caused the plaintiff to miss work, they may be entitled to compensation for the wages lost during their recovery period and future lost earning capacity if the injuries result in long-term or permanent disability. Dog bite victims may be eligible to receive compensation for the intangible harm, such as physical pain, emotional distress, and mental anguish, caused by the attack as well.

Talk to a Trusted Personal Injury Attorney in Syracuse, Rochester, or Upstate New York

Many people own dogs as pets without ever experiencing harmful incidents, but dogs can suddenly attack and cause grave harm. If you were injured by a dog bite, you should speak to an attorney about your potential claims. The trusted Syracuse personal injury lawyers of DeFrancisco & Falgiatano Personal Injury Lawyers can aid you in pursuing justice for your losses, and if you engage our services, we will work tirelessly on your behalf. Our primary office is located in Syracuse. We regularly represent parties in lawsuits arising out of dog bites in Syracuse, Rochester, and throughout Upstate New York. To set up a complimentary and confidential conference, you can contact us by calling us at 833-200-2000 or by using our online form.

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