Virginia Animal & Dog Bite Lawyers
Animal bites can leave children and adults with severe scars and nerve damage that remain for a lifetime. Emotional injuries, infection, painful lacerations, punctures, abrasions, crush injuries, facial and other fractures are not unusual either. Victims of an animal attack may incur substantial medical bills for immediate care and treatment of their injuries. Years after an attack, they may need plastic or cosmetic surgery to improve the appearance of scars.
Who can you turn to for help when you or a loved one has been injured by an animal through the negligence of its owner? The lawyers at Allen, Allen, Allen & Allen have handled hundreds of animal bite cases and can advise and counsel you how to proceed with your claim. They understand the serious and long term impact such injuries can have on individuals and their families.
Contact us for a free consultation at 1-866-388-1307 or by email and put our attorneys who routinely handle dog bite and animal bite cases to work for you.
The attorneys at Allen, Allen, Allen and Allen know the Virginia laws and ordinances which impose liability on negligent animal owners for injuries their animals inflict on innocent victims. Most often, it is dogs that bite people. In some towns or cities, local ordinances require that dogs walking or running on public streets be secured by a leash and under the control of the owner or an attendant. Should an unattended, unleashed dog attack and injure someone, the owner may be held responsible. Likewise, an owner must use reasonable care to prevent injury to persons who may come in contact with his animals while visiting his home or property. This is especially true if the owner or caretaker knows one or more of his animals has a propensity towards dangerous or vicious conduct or if he is on notice that one of them has attacked or bitten a person in the past.
What should you do immediately after an animal has bitten or attacked you?
- Identify the animal and its owner. If you are physically unable to do so, ask a bystander or family member to obtain the information. This may be critical to your health. If you cannot identify the animal that bit you, it cannot be checked for rabies. As a result, you may face painful rabies treatment. Furthermore, if you decide to make a claim for injuries sustained during an animal attack, you must know the identity of the animal’s owner or caretaker in order to file a lawsuit against him.
- Identifying the animal’s owner and the place where the animal lived at the time of the incident is also essential for a proper investigation of your claim. This information will help your Allen and Allen lawyer and investigators answer many important questions. What did the owner and neighbors know before the attack about the propensity of the dog or other animal to attack or bite? Had this particular animal ever bitten a neighbor or others before your attack? If so, who and when? Was the dog allowed to roam freely in a town or city where there was a leash ordinance in effect?
- Report the incident promptly to the local animal control department. Officials may investigate the circumstances surrounding your attack and take action to prevent future attacks on others. Department records may also reveal that the same dog or animal which bit you has been involved in prior attacks. Information regarding the animal’s prior conduct may help your Allen and Allen lawyer win your case.
- Obtain the name, address and phone number of eye witnesses who saw the dog or animal attack or who came to the scene shortly thereafter. Allen, Allen, Allen & Allen investigators may interview these witnesses to determine if they have valuable information to support your case. Our investigators may also locate neighbors who know whether the dog or animal had attacked other people in the past.
- If you have contact with the dog or animal owner after the incident, ask him about insurance. His homeowners’ or renters’ insurance policy may provide you coverage.
- Get prompt medical treatment if your injuries involve more than superficial cuts or lacerations that will heal without scarring in a few days. Watch out for infection. If you sustained a severe facial cut or laceration, one which requires stitches or debridement, ask that a plastic or cosmetic surgeon perform the procedure. Most scars, even with plastic surgery, will never fade completely. However, plastic surgeons are trained to minimize permanent scarring.
- Take photographs of your injuries while they are fresh, within a day or two of your injury if possible. It is equally important to photograph your lacerations, bruises, scars, and other injuries as time passes. It usually takes a year or more for scars to reach maximum medical improvement. Your Allen and Allen attorney may want to show an insurance claims representative or a jury how severe your injuries were during the first few weeks after your attack and how long it took for your injuries to heal.
When an animal causes personal injury, it can be difficult to determine whether there is an actionable claim against the animal owner or caretaker. The attorneys of the Allen Law Firm can review the facts of your case and evaluate them. Call us at 1-866-388-1307 for a free consultation or contact us by email. We want to help you.
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Select one of our Virginia offices in the drop down menu for location addresses and contact information.
1809 Staples Mill Road
Richmond, VA 23230
7255 Mechanicsville Turnpike
Mechanicsville, VA 23111
|Short Pump / Glen Allen Office
11577 W. Broad Street
Henrico, VA 23233
|Chesterfield / Midlothian Office
6123 Harbourside Centre Loop
Midlothian, VA 23112
106 S. Market Street
Petersburg, VA 23803
3504 Plank Road
Fredericksburg, VA 22407
|Garrisonville / Stafford Office
50 Dunn Drive, Suite 105
Stafford, VA 22556
2100 Rio Hill Center
Charlottesville, VA 22901