Rhode Island Dog Bite Lawyer
Every year, 4.5 million people are bitten by dogs in the U.S., according to the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). Most dog bite victims are children or older adults. A fifth of all dog bite victims require medical attention for their injuries, and 27,000 people a year must go through reconstructive surgery to attempt to repair the damage done by dog bites.
The yearly cost of dog bites in the U.S. is nearly $483 million, the AMVA reports. Dog bite claims year account for about one third of all claims under homeowner’s liability insurance.
If you or your child has been bitten by someone else’s dog in Rhode Island, you may be entitled to significant compensation. Your best course of action is to consult with an experienced personal injury lawyer.
Marasco & Nesselbush stands ready to provide the quality legal counsel and representation you need to obtain the full compensation you deserve. We offer trusted legal care from experienced dog bite attorneys who know how to obtain extraordinary results for each and every client.
Contact us now for a free review of your case and advice about your legal rights.
Common Injuries from Dog Attacks
Dog bites most commonly affect the body’s extremities, such as the arms, legs, hands and feet, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The face and neck are also susceptible to dog bite injuries.
The most common dog bite injuries include:
- Puncture wounds
- Lacerations and abrasions
- Bone fractures
- Crush injuries, particularly to the head
It is crucial to seek medical treatment for a dog bite. Determining whether the dog has been vaccinated for rabies is also critical. Serious injuries may require hospitalization, reconstructive and cosmetic surgery and physical rehabilitation therapy, as well as help for emotional trauma.
Liability for Dog Bite Injuries in Rhode Island
Under Rhode Island Statutes Section 4-13-16, dog owners are strictly liable for injuries when a dog bites a person outside of the confines of the animal’s enclosed area. For example, if you were bitten by a dog while walking down the street, in a park, in your own front yard or while visiting a friend other than the dog owner, strict liability should apply to your claim. Additionally, according to the statute, a victim bitten by a dog that has bitten before is entitled to recover double the standard amount of damages.
Strict liability does not apply when a dog bites someone who enters a property while the dog is contained in the enclosed area provided by its owner. In such a case, the victim may need to prove that the dog owner knew about the dog’s vicious propensities in order to have a claim for compensation. This condition of common law dog bite claims is known as the “one-bite rule.”
If you or your child has been bitten by a dog belonging to a neighbor, relative or friend, you may be reluctant to file a claim for compensation. However, you should be aware that most homeowner’s insurance policies cover liability for dog bites. If you file a claim for compensation for dog bite injuries, an insurance company will most likely pay your claim, and the money will not come out of your neighbor or friend’s pocket.
Legal Help for Rhode Island Dog Bite Victims
Dog bite injuries can be serious or even fatal in the most terrible cases. If you or your loved one has sustained such injuries, you may have a right to recover for your medical expenses, lost earnings, pain and suffering, and other losses.
The experienced team of premises liability lawyers at Marasco & Nesselbush are committed to obtaining social, personal and economic justice for our clients. This includes securing compensation for the many physical, psychological and financial consequences of a serious dog bite injury.
As Rhode Island’s premier personal injury law firm, we have the legal experience and resources to hold responsible parties and their insurance companies accountable for their actions and to get you the compensation you deserve. To learn more about how we can protect your rights, or to request a free, confidential case consultation, fill out the contact form on this page for a free consultation.
- CDC: Preventing Dog Bites
- CDC: Nonfatal Dog Bite-Related Injuries Treated in Hospital Emergency Departments
- Rhode Island Statutes: Chapter 4-13 Dogs