Answering Common Questions About Seeking Legal Help For Animal Attacks

personal injury settlementsMost people understand that even though household pets are intended for companionship, they can sometimes attack someone as a result of fear, intimidation, or aggression. If you’ve recently been injured in an animal attack, it’s important to understand that you may be entitled to personal injury settlements. But before you seek legal help, you need to know the facts. Here’s a quick FAQ to help you understand what steps to take in the event of an animal attack.

Can people who were bitten while at the owner’s residence performing work sue for personal injury settlements?
While each case is unique, most cases require the animal’s owner to take legal responsibility in protecting visitors and contractors from injury. This means that if the owner knows that the animal can be vicious or aggressive toward strangers, they’re obligated to keep it away from you, or at least warn you of its nature. Again, each case has different circumstances, so consult a personal injury attorney in Memphis for more information.

If a stray dog bites a person in a public place, who is responsible?
Most circumstances don’t call for any personal injury settlements since the dog has no owner. Findlaw.com says, “Most likely, a person bitten by a stray dog will not have a legal claim. Municipalities are generally not responsible for stray dogs. If, however, a dog is being kept at the local pound and escapes and bites you, you may have a claim against the pound. If you can argue that the pound’s negligence caused your injury, you may be able to recover damages.”

If a person gets bitten by a neighbor’s dog on their own property, could there be a claim?
This question’s answer varies depending on whether the state imposes “strict liability” on dog owners. If it does, you most likely only need to prove that the dog injured you, but if not, you’ll need to prove that the neighbor knew or should have known about the dog’s aggressive nature beforehand. Keep in mind that each case is different, so consult a professional for details.

Ultimately, 4% to 5% of personal injury cases in the United States go to trial, and knowing the answers to these common questions can help you make the right decisions regarding your case.