Dog bites can happen at any time in Smyrna, leaving the victims with painful and costly injuries. Recent national plastic surgery statistics from 2018 show that more than 20,000 people received reconstructive surgery for their dog bites. Don’t pay for any of your damages out of pocket.
Let our Smyrna personal injury lawyers at John Foy & Associates help you with your injury claim. We have been doing so for over 20 years and helping bite victims win money to recover their costs. Our attorneys have worked on minor to the most severe cases, and we are ready for anything.
How Our Dog Bite Lawyers in Smyrna Can Help You
You get much more than just simple legal services when you hire a Smyrna dog bite lawyer from John Foy & Associates. We can help you in a variety of ways that will allow you to recover the maximum amount of compensation possible.
Gathering Important Evidence and Documents
After your dog bite, you may wonder where to even begin building a solid case for your claim. Filing a claim without strong evidence won’t get you very far in negotiations. While you recover from your dog bite injury, our lawyers will gather critical evidence and documents such as:
- Medical records, police records, animal control history, etc.
- Pictures of the dog, your injuries, and the location of where you were bitten
- Testimonies from witnesses to your dog bite incident
- Supporting testimony from experts in various fields
We won’t hesitate to take your dog bite case to court if needed. We will use all of the evidence available for your claim to win you the settlement you deserve.
Calculating Your Damages
Economic damages, such as medical expenses and lost wages, are relatively straightforward to calculate. However, non-economic damages like those below need to be properly assessed:
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish and emotional trauma
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Loss of a loved one
- Disfigurement and disability
We can calculate all of these damages accurately according to the context of your case, the severity of your injuries, and the extent these damages have had on your life. Our dog bite lawyers in Smyrna use various formulas and techniques to calculate how much your settlement is worth accurately.
Handling the Insurance Companies
Insurance companies are large businesses with lots of money and legal resources available at their disposal. Trying to challenge them on anything can be extremely difficult if you don’t also have those same legal resources. That’s where a dog bite attorney in Smyrna comes in.
Our lawyers will increase the chances of you getting a fair settlement. Don’t accept the insurance company’s initial settlement offer, and don’t believe their lies about hiring a lawyer. Remember, they want to protect their bottom line and don’t want you to have the ability to get more money out of them.
Never let the insurance companies force you into settling for less. We won’t let that happen to you. We won’t stop until you get the settlement you need to heal and recover from your dog bite injuries.
Get the strong arm
Dog Bites in Smyrna Can Be Incredibly Serious
Every dog bite is different, but it’s common for even seemingly minor bites to become serious quickly. We routinely see dog bite cases that have resulted in:
- Severe maulings
- Extensive surgeries
- Wrongful death
Although many dogs make excellent pets, those that attack can be extremely dangerous. When a dog feels threatened, instinct can take over. As a result, the dog may grab hold of the victim, pull them down, and continue holding on or attacking. This can quickly become deadly.
There is the emotional side to dog bites and attacks, too. Getting bitten can lead to years, or even a lifetime, of fear of dogs or other emotional trauma. Plus, dog bite injuries can cause scarring or disfigurement that affects the victim’s confidence and quality of life.
Finding Out Who Owns the Dog that Bit You
After a dog bite, the owner might try to take their dog and run. Other times, the owner is nowhere to be found, or the dog is a stray. Here are some ways you can try to find out more about the dog and its person.
Ask the Neighbors
If the dog bite happened in a neighborhood, people who live nearby might know who the dog belongs to. You might also go door to door in the area where you were bitten and ask if anyone recognizes the dog.
Many dog bites occur when the owner has been negligent before, such as freely letting their dog roam around the neighborhood. Those who live around the area might have more facts about the dog.
If you work with a Smyrna dog bite lawyer, they can also help you investigate the attack and ask around for more details.
Walk Around the Area
A dog sometimes runs away after biting someone. Or, the owner tries to leave the scene quickly with the dog, hoping you’ll let it go.
Walking through the area helps you look for any sign of the dog. Just make sure you’re not trespassing on anyone’s property while looking.
Tell Animal Control
Contacting Cobb County Animal Services may also get you more answers regarding the dog. You should also let Animal Services know about the bite anyway, as they can record what happened and possibly come collect the dog.
What If the Dog Was a Stray?
The dog’s owner is almost always liable for the costs of a dog bite. However, if the dog is a stray, it will make seeking compensation difficult or even impossible. Don’t give up, though. You may still have options.
Often, it turns out that the dog is not a stray after all. They may have temporarily gotten away from their owners and traveled a long way. Or, the owner might have been careless and let their dog roam, making it seem as if the dog has no home when they really do.
Animal Services and your lawyer can help investigate and determine whether or not the dog has an owner. In situations when there is truly no owner to hold liable, property insurance may cover some costs from the attack. It’s best to talk to a Smyrna dog bite attorney about your options before assuming nothing can be done.
What to Do If Your Child Was Bitten By a Dog in Smyrna
Unfortunately, children are common victims of dog bites in Smyrna. Children are more likely to get bitten because they are less aware of how to interact with an animal. They may think the dog is playing when they feel threatened. Kids are also smaller and, in some situations, may seem more like prey to a dog that has vicious tendencies.
Since kids are smaller, they also tend to suffer more serious injuries from dog bites than adults. A dog bite can be incredibly traumatic to a young child, both physically and emotionally. Just like adult victims, children who have been bitten have rights.
While compensation cannot undo what happened, it can help support your family as you pay for medical bills and work to help the children recover as fully as possible.
The Dog’s Owner May Try to Blame You
Be aware that the dog’s owner may try to blame you or your child. It’s natural to be defensive of their dog, but they are not immune to the law.
If you were injured because their pet attacked you, they’re likely liable. Stand firm and contact your dog bite lawyer. They can help ensure your rights are protected, and you shouldn’t be blamed for something you didn’t do.
The Statute of Limitations for Dog Bites in Smyrna
The Official Code of Georgia Annotated (OCGA) §9-3-33 states that you only have two years from the date of your dog bite injury to file a claim. With this in mind, it’s best to get started on building a strong case for your claim as soon as possible.
While we don’t recommend you blindly rush through the whole process to get a settlement, we do recommend that you take the initiative to gather evidence and speak to one of our lawyers in a timely manner.
Get a Free Consultation with a Dog Bite Lawyer in Smyrna Today
At John Foy & Associates, we can help you seek full compensation after a dog bite in Smyrna. Over the last 20 years of working on dog bite cases, we have grown to become one of the most experienced and well-respected law firms in Georgia. Contact us today to schedule an appointment for your free consultation.