Hiring a dog bite attorney in Atlanta can be important if you or someone you love suffered serious or fatal injuries. It’s critical to work with someone who understands the laws and has handled claims involving dog attacks.
Dog Bite Law and Proving Liability Can Be Complex
One of the primary reasons you should hire an attorney is that the laws in Georgia may make it difficult to hold an owner liable for injuries inflicted by his or her dog.
Georgia’s dog bite statute (Sec. 51-2-7) states that owners could be liable if, unprovoked, a dangerous or vicious dog inflicts injury on another person. However, there are three elements that must be established if you hope to be successful with your case.
The first is proving that a dog was dangerous or vicious. The second is proving the owner had knowledge of the dog’s propensity to cause injury. And lastly, that the owner failed to manage the dog (such as using a leash) or failed to contain it (by allowing it to run at large). Proving these three elements may be difficult, and having a legal professional familiar with these cases can be beneficial.
An attorney can also evaluate city or county codes and ordinances pertaining to dog owners. For instance, some cities have put restrictions on certain breeds of dogs. Other breeds of dogs have been declared dangerous or potentially dangerous.
Account for All Damages in a Dog Bite Claim
Another reason to hire an attorney is that if you or a loved one was seriously or fatally injured, it’s critical that all damages suffered are addressed in a claim.
For instance, you would want not only your initial medical costs addressed but any future ones as well:
- ambulance services;
- treatment in an emergency room;
- surgery; or
But there may be additional costs later on, such as reconstructive or cosmetic surgery.
If the victim worked, then any income that is lost while recovering will also need to be included in a claim. And if there will be future time off from work, you want to make sure those wages are taken into account as well. A dog bite attorney in Atlanta will make sure that your economic damages are calculated correctly.
Dog attacks don’t just cause physical harm. Victims oftentimes deal with emotional distress as well. An attorney will make sure those are addressed in your claim, too. This could include pain and suffering and mental anguish.
Furthermore, a dog bite attorney in Atlanta knows that other damages may be considered such as disfigurement and disability. It will be important to make sure all of your financial, physical and emotional losses are incorporated into your claim.
Preventative Measures: Dog Bite Attack Info for Children
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have released a tip sheet for children so that they can avoid dangerous dogs and dog bite attacks, so for future reference:
- don’t pet or talk to a dog you don’t know;
- if a dog you don’t know comes toward you, don’t scream or run;
- ‘stand still like a tree’ if a dog you don’t know comes toward you;
- ‘lay still like a log’ if a dog knocks you over; and
- don’t bother a dog that is sleeping, eating, or taking care of puppies.
Seeking Help from a Dog Bite Attorney in Atlanta
Dog attacks are devastating to victims and their families, sometimes resulting in permanent scarring and disfigurement. The attorneys at the Law Office of Jason R. Schultz have dealt with cases like yours before and realize the emotional and physical trauma with which you may be struggling.
That’s why we’ve dedicated our practice to helping injury victims like you seek compensation and justice. To learn what your rights are and what steps need to be taken in order to protect them, contact a dog bite attorney in Atlanta at 404-474-0804.