Have you or your child been bitten by a dog?
While the great majority of dogs are lovable and friendly companions, there are certainly exceptions to this rule. In fact, hundreds of thousands of dog bite victims are admitted to emergency rooms each year. You need a Michigan dog bite attorney who will do whatever it takes to insure that you are compensated for you or your family member’s injuries.
Dog owners have a legal duty to protect the public from their pets, especially in cases where the animal has a history of aggressive or hostile behavior. When owners fail to take this responsibility seriously, a Michigan dog bite lawyer at Baldwin Legal Services PLLC stands ready to help injury victims. Whether your neighbor failed to properly fence in his or her pet and caused you or your family member to sustain a serious wound, or you suffer injury while intervening during an animal attack at a dog park, our skilled dog bite attorney can provide you with the legal advice and guidance you need to secure compensation for your injury or a wrongful death fatality.
Our firm advocates for dog-bite victims who sustain severe to catastrophic injuries, and in the most severe cases, child fatalities. We understand that while some wounds heal completely within a few weeks after an accident, others can result in lifelong impairments such as amputation or disfigurement. We make it a priority to provide families with serious and caring legal representation after a traumatic dog bite injury.
We can help if you suffer any type of injury from a dangerous animal, including but not limited to the following:
- Pain and suffering
- Fatal bites
- Fractured bones
- Hip displacement surgery
- Puncture wounds
- Rabies vaccination reactions
- Permanent scarring
If you or a loved one has sustained a dog bite injury, you may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses, lost wages and other damages. The Michigan dog bite attorney at Baldwin Legal Services has the knowledge and resources to handle your claim. We have attained substantial Michigan dog bite lawsuits for victims of dog bite attacks, and we can do the same for you. Please call 877-886-1441 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation.
Michigan Dog Bite Laws
The Michigan Dog Bite Statute, MCL 287.351, states:
If a dog bites a person, without provocation while the person is on public property, or lawfully on private property, including the property of the owner of the dog, the owner of the dog shall be liable for any damages suffered by the person bitten, regardless of the former viciousness of the dog or the owner’s knowledge of such viciousness.
In Michigan, dog owners face what is known as strict liability. This means that if their dogs bite people, they must pay all medical or veterinary bills that stem from the incidents, regardless of their dogs’ histories or what the owners knew about their dogs. Many people believe that “every dog is allowed one bite.” Under Michigan law, this is simply not true. A dog’s “good behavior” before an attack does not shield the dog owner from responsibility.
What You Can Do – Now
Ideally, after a dog bite, you should seek medical care for the injuries and report the event to a local animal control agency or the police. Reporting the dog is especially important if the dog that bit you was a stray, as the animal control agency will need to find the dog and pick it up to prevent additional dog bite injuries.
After seeking medical care and making the report, be sure to get copies of your records and the written report. These documents will be needed when you talk with a Michigan personal injury lawyer. Other items that may prove helpful in building your claim are photographs of the injuries and receipts from medical bills and prescriptions. Contact us if you have any questions about what to do.
After the Attack
The steps you take immediately following an attack will help protect your rights. Here are few steps to take right away:
- Obtain the dog owner’s name, address and phone numbers. You should also collect information from anyone who may have witnessed the attack.
- Wash your wounds with soap and lots of water. Cover your wounds with a clean bandage and cloth and go to the hospital that same day.
- Report the dog attack to the Michigan animal control agency in your community.
- Keep records of all of your expenses including your medical bills and lost wages.
- Take photos of your injuries as they heal.
- Research your legal options and pursue guidance from a Michigan personal injury lawyer who has handled cases similar to yours.
How Does Insurance Come Into Play in a Dog Bite Case?
You may be wondering how insurance plays a role in dog bite cases. Millions of people are bitten by dogs each year, and many claims (and lawsuits) are filed on behalf of the people who are injured. Many homeowner policies will cover the costs associated with the dog bites. Industry statistics indicate that as many as one-third of all homeowner liability claims are for injuries sustained as the result of dog bites.
What does this mean for you? On the plus side, it usually means the presence of an available source of funds to compensate you for your injury. But it also means that at one point or another an insurance adjuster will be involved in the case. Negotiating with insurance companies is neither easy, nor should it be undertaken on your own. Insurance companies are interested in their bottom line, and for them, negotiating on your case is a “zero-sum” game. This means that for every dollar they pay you, it is one less dollar on their bottom line. The goal of the insurance company will always be to minimize your injuries and your losses, and to pay you the absolute minimum they can get away with.
In order to combat the rigid posture of the insurers, your best interests are served by having an experienced attorney by your side, one who knows how to negotiate with insurance companies; who means business; who is experienced and knowledgeable; and who is not afraid to proceed to trial when necessary in order to protect your interests.
Experienced Michigan Dog Bite Personal Injury Lawyer
When you hire us to help you get maximum recovery after a dog bite or animal attack, we will conduct a thorough investigation of the facts of your case. We take care of all matters related to a personal injury claim resulting from a dog bite or animal attack, obtain and assess all relevant evidence, and prepare and present the strongest arguments for your case. We will file all the necessary documents with the court, and will be your advocate in all proceedings, from settlement conferences to trial. We will also be your liaison with insurance companies, helping you get all the benefits you need and deserve.
The insurance company wants to settle your case as soon as possible – and for as little money as possible. Our personal injury attorney has a Master of Laws (LL.M.) in Insurance Law and knows how to protect you from the insurance companies and to present your claim in the best way possible to ensure your rights are protected and that you get the maximum compensation available. Recovering your damages starts with an evaluation of your case. Please call 877-886-1441 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation. We are available 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. Home and hospital visits are available upon request.