A dog bite may not sound severe, but all dog bites should be taken seriously. Even a relatively minor bite can become infected or require stitches. More serious dog attacks can lead to long-term pain, scarring and sometimes even death. Every year, about 27,000 Americans undergo reconstructive surgery because of dog bites.
And some of the most tragic cases involve young children. If you or one of your family members has been bitten by a dog in East Point, a dog bite lawyer can help you.
At John Foy & Associates, we have built our reputation on helping people recover money after animal attacks and other injuries. We have a 20-year track record of getting results for dog bite victims. This is because from day one we have focused only on helping victims—never insurance companies or the owners of vicious dogs.
We’d like to put our experience and reputation to work for you. Let our East Point personal injury lawyers give you a free consultation to talk about your case and explain how we can help.
What Should I Do If a Dog Bites Me in East Point?
Always call for emergency medical help if you need it. However, if you don’t need an ambulance, it is helpful to find out as much as you can about the dog that bit you. Talk to the owner, if the owner is around, or people who may have stopped to help you. Try to find out the following:
- Who does the dog belong to, and where do they live?
- Is the dog up to date on its shots? Which ones?
- Does the dog have a history of biting people?
Don’t be surprised if you can’t get much information out of the dog’s owner. And don’t worry if you can’t find the owner at all. At John Foy & Associates, we are used to investigating dog bite claims. We have an investigative team that can go back to the scene of your bite and ask around to find out who owns the dog.
We will also research public records to learn if the dog has bitten people before. Our investigation will help us build a strong case showing who is responsible for your injuries.
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Should I Report a Dog Bite?
Yes. You should report any dog bite in the City of East Point to two different agencies:
- The East Point Police Department. If you call the police immediately after you are bitten, they can come to the scene and prepare an incident report. The report is an important part of your claim.
- Fulton County Animal Control. Animal control keeps records of all animal attacks. Animal control’s records can help identify the dog and its owner, and they will show whether the dog has bitten other people in the past.
What Will Happen to the Dog If I Report an Attack?
Most of the time, the dog will not be punished. Georgia’s dog bite laws include a “one free bite” rule. This allows dogs to escape punishment if they have never bitten anyone before. However, the rule does not apply to dogs that have a history of violence or dogs from certain highly aggressive breeds. Example of these aggressive breeds include:
- Pit bulls
- Hybrids of dogs and wolves
- Breeds created for fighting
Who Is Liable If a Dog Bites Me?
While dogs get one free bite, their owners do not. A dog’s owner is always liable if a dog bites you. This is because Georgia law requires dog owners to keep their canines under control.
The definition of “under control” varies depending on the situation, but it could include using a leash, muzzling the dog, putting the dog in a crate when visitors are around, or installing a fence around the yard where the dog lives. If a dog bites someone, it means the owner has failed to control the dog. No matter what the owner says, the dog bite was not your fault.
What Kinds of Costs Can I Recover in a Dog Bite Claim?
Georgia law applies in the local courts in East Point, and that means you can get ALL of your costs and damages. A typical dog bite victim recovers these types of costs:
- Medical expenses, including hospitals, emergency rooms, doctors and surgery
- The cost of physical therapy or other rehabilitation
- Mental health treatment for trauma caused by the attack
- Lost pay, if you had to miss work because you were bitten
In a severe bite case, you may also be eligible for additional large amounts of money for pain and suffering or a disability. We know this money can never undo the traumatic effects of an animal attack, but it can give you the financial security to take care of your family and continue with your treatment and healing.
What If My Friend’s Dog Bit Me?
Being bitten by a friend or relative’s dog is awkward, but you should still report the bite. We understand you don’t want to upset your friend, but you deserve to get the best possible care for your injuries. Your claim is not with your friend personally—it will be handled by insurance, usually a homeowner’s policy. Your friend will not have to pay out of pocket for your costs.
What If a Dog Bit Me While I Was Working on Someone Else’s Property?
Property owners have a legal duty to make their property safe for people who work there—and that includes controlling their animals. If a dog bites you while you are a hired worker, you have the same rights as anyone else. You can file a dog bite claim, or in some cases you may even be able to file a workers’ compensation claim.
How Much does a Dog Bite Lawyer Cost in East Point?
At John Foy and Associates, our philosophy is that you should never have to pay out of pocket for legal advice when you are struggling with an injury. We won’t charge you a thing up front, and we won’t charge you at all unless we win money for you. We believe this is the fairest way to get you quality legal help without asking you to take on a financial risk.
Talk to an East Point Dog Bite Lawyer for Free
At John Foy & Associates, we are one of the few law firms with a strong track record for winning dog bite cases. Let us put our 20 years of experience to work for you. Sit down with us for a free consultation and we will answer your questions and explain how to get started with your claim. Call us or fill out the form to your right and get your FREE consultation today.