American households are home to roughly 78 million dogs. With that many dogs throughout the country, naturally some are going to bite. But according to the United States Center for Disease Control, even if you ARE bit by a dog, only about 20 percent of the dog bites in our country cause an injury, bruised egos notwithstanding. But what about the horrific dog attacks where the victims are not as fortunate; people are maimed, horrified into a lifelong fear of dogs and other animals, or worse, are killed. In Arizona, dog bite victims or families of dog bite victims need experienced legal support to be sure they get the help they need to correctly pursue any injury claims for damages caused by the dog attack.
When you see an attack between a dog or dogs, and a person, immediately call 911. If you can communicate with the dispatcher on the line, listen for any advice or questions the person on the phone has and answer as best as you can. Do not attempt to get between the person and the dog. If you can locate the dog’s owner to collect his or her contact information, you can also be a big help.
Record What You See
What happens before and during the dog attack can be very important to the victim’s case later. Do your best to remember any details that happened from when you began watching it and if possible, write it down. You may also use your telephone to record photographs or video of what you see. Your version of the story can mean a great deal to the person being attacked. If the dog attack is serious and the person is seriously injured or worse, killed, the information you secure can win or lose valuable assistance for the person attacked or his or her family.
A Deadly Dog Attack – What Happens Next?
A total of 41 human beings were killed in 2016 by dog attacks. The number is small when one considers there were more than 4.5 million dog bites in that same year. Yet, when someone is the victim of a vicious attack, everyone experiences a devastating loss. The family of the victim is heart-broken, the owners of the dog, which is often euthanized following a human attack, are crushed, and now the loved ones of the person killed are often ruined financially by the loss as well as emotionally. In Arizona, the law is clearly on the side of the victim. Dog owners have the responsibility to provide constant oversight over their pet. When they fail in Arizona, and their dog attacks a person, the dog owner is liable for its actions regardless of where the animal was when he or she attacked.
Helping Dog Attack Victims’ Families Win Just Compensation
If your loved one was killed by a dog attack, you could be entitled to recover medical expenses, lost pay, damages to any property, or loss of consortium. Sometimes, you may also secure compensation for punitive damages—dollars meant to punish someone for reckless or negligent behavior. In other words, if the dog’s owner knew he owned an historically dangerous dog yet did not secure the dog or allowed it to run free in a park or play area for children, a jury could decide to award punitive damages.
The laws are on your side if your loved one has been killed or seriously injured by a dog in Arizona. However, determining how to recover damages can be complicated, especially when insurance companies can get involved. Fighting adjustors and lawyers of huge American insurance companies can be expensive, and challenging. To learn more about how to fight to recover compensation for your loved one’s serious injury, or even death, contact Petersen Johnson today. We have years of experience in helping people know their legal rights and fight for their reward.