Dog bites can cause severe pain, injuries, scarring and even death. Of the millions of Americans bitten by dogs each year, about 27,000 will need reconstructive surgery – and even a minor dog bite can become infected and develop complications. If you or someone close to you has suffered a personal injury in Dunwoody, help is available. You need to speak to a Dunwoody dog bite lawyer.
At John Foy & Associates, we have spent the past 20 years getting money for victims of dog bites and other types of attacks and accidents. From the first day we opened our doors as a local law office, we have committed ourselves exclusively to helping people who have been injured.
Today, we are known as one of the top personal injury firms in Georgia. Our Dunwoody dog bite lawyers would like to sit down with you for a free consultation to talk about your case and explain your options.
What Should I Do After a Dog Bite in Dunwoody?
Your first order of business is to get medical attention. Summon an ambulance to the scene if you need one. If you don’t need care immediately, we do recommend that you stay at the scene at try to get some basic information about the dog and its owner.
- If the dog owner is there, get the person’s name and address. If not, ask bystanders if they know who the dog belongs to and where they live.
- Ask the owner for the dog’s history of shots. It is especially important to know if the dog has had its rabies shots.
- Try to find out if the dog has bitten anyone before.
Don’t be surprised if the dog’s owner is uncooperative. Dog owners often become defensive, and the owner may try to minimize your injuries or even blame you for the attack. Or the dog may have been wandering on its own.
At John Foy & Associates, we know how to handle these situations and get the answers we need to pursue your claim. We will research public records for information about the dog and its past history, and we can go through the neighborhood to identify the dog and its owner.
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Reporting a Dog Bite
Always report a dog bite. In fact, in the City of Dunwoody you should report your bite to two different agencies:
- The Dunwoody Police Department. A police officer will come to the scene, talk to you and any witnesses, and make an incident report. The report is important to your claim.
- DeKalb County Animal Enforcement. Dunwoody Animal control keeps records relating to animal attacks. Animal control’s records can help to identify a dog and will also show whether the dog has been violent in the past.
What Will Happen to the Dog If I Report a Bite?
Dogs usually are not punished for biting people. In Georgia, the law gives dogs “one free bite,” meaning that the dog won’t suffer any consequences if it has never bitten anyone before. However, if a dog has a history of biting people or is part of a highly aggressive breed, the “one free bite” rule may not apply.
What Breeds of Dog Have the Most Attacks?
- Pit bulls
- Dog/wolf hybrids
- Breeds created especially for fighting
Who Is Legally Liable if a Dog Bites Me?
The owner is always liable for a dog’s actions. Georgia law is very clear about this: dog owners have a legal duty to keep their animals under control at all times. Depending on the situation, this might mean that a dog must be kept on a leash while walking on city streets, placed in a crate at home when visitors are around, or closely supervised when off leash.
If a dog attacked someone, the owner has failed to control the dog. This means the owner is legally responsible for the consequences. The owner may try to blame you or claim the bite was just a “playful nip.” It doesn’t matter—the owner is still liable.
What Kinds of Costs Can I Recover If a Dog Bites Me in Dunwoody?
Georgia law allows you to recover ANY cost or damage that was caused by the dog bite. The local courts in Dunwoody often award damages in a dog bite case for:
- Medical expenses, including plastic or reconstructive surgery
- Physical therapy or other rehabilitation
- Mental health treatment for the psychological effects of the bite
- Lost wages, if you lost time from work because of the bite
Courts also may award substantially more money in certain cases – for example, if you had severe pain or the bite caused a disability. Money cannot erase a tragic and unprovoked attack, but it can help you continue with all the treatment you need and help you and your family maintain financial stability as you put your life back together.
What If My Friend’s Dog Bit Me?
You should still report the bite and get as much information as you can about the dog. It’s normal to be worried about getting your friend in trouble or costing your friend money. But many dog bite claims are covered under homeowner’s insurance policies, meaning that you friend will not pay anything out of pocket and the entire matter will be handled between you and the insurance company.
The money you receive can make a dramatic difference in your life, and your friend should be relieved to see that the insurance can pay for the care you need.
What If I Was Bitten While Working on Someone Else’s Property?
Hired workers have the same rights as anyone else. Dog owners are required to make their property safe for the people who work there, and that includes crating or otherwise controlling a dog. You can make an injury claim for your dog bite. In some cases the bite may be covered by workers compensation insurance, which can make it faster and easier to recover money.
How Much does a Dunwoody Dog Bite Lawyer Cost?
At John Foy & Associates, we believe that a dog bite claim shouldn’t cost you anything out of pocket. That’s why we have developed a simple, no-risk system. Your first consultation is always free, and after that, we won’t charge you anything up-front to handle your claim. In fact, we won’t charge you anything at all if we don’t win money for you. We think this is the fairest way to get you the legal help you need, right away.
Talk to a Dunwoody Dog Bite Lawyer for Free
At John Foy & Associates, our dog bite lawyers are here to help. Our long track record of successfully helping dog bite victims speaks for itself. Let us give you a free consultation to talk about your claim and explain how we can help you get the money you deserve.
Call us at 404-400-4000 or fill out the form to your right and get your FREE consultation today.