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According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) there are 4.5 million dog bites reported every year in the United States. Of these, 1 in 5 dog bite injuries will become infected and require medical treatment.
It can be hard to think that man’s best friend could hurt anyone, but it happens all the time. So the question is: What happens if you’re bitten by someone else’s dog? One of the most important steps you can take is to contact the Madison dog bite attorneys at Boller & Vaughan.
Our skilled dog bite lawyers have extensive success in personal injury cases, including those related to animal bites, and we can help you pursue the compensation you need for medical expenses and other damages.
Wisconsin is a “strict liability” state when it comes to injuries caused by dogs. This means that the dog’s owner can be held liable regardless of whether they knew the dog had aggressive tendencies.
A dog’s owner is liable for any injuries their dog causes to people, property or other animals. Additionally, if the owner “was notified or knew” their dog had caused injury before, they are liable for double the amount of damages.
The law does not specify what an injury is, so the owner’s liability is not limited to dog bites but includes other dog-inflicted injuries as well. For instance, if a dog knocks someone over, their owner is still liable for any injuries caused.
There is one way an aggressive dog’s owner may not be responsible for all damages the dog caused, and that is if Wisconsin’s modified comparative negligence rules apply. Under these laws, the person who was injured could be partially or wholly responsible for their injuries if they provoked the dog before it attacked.
If the injured person provoked the dog and is found to be 50 percent or less responsible for their injuries, the dog’s owner will only have to pay 50 percent of the damages. However, if the injured person is responsible for 51 percent or more of their injuries, they cannot recover any damages from the dog’s owner.
Dogs may be domesticated, but that doesn’t mean they lack their wild, natural instincts. Some dogs can become aggressive in certain situations or around certain people, causing them to become vicious or bite. Even well-trained dogs can be aggressive in some circumstances.
Some people think that certain breeds of dog are more prone to biting than others, but the truth is that any dog, regardless of breed, size or gender, can lash out and bite.
Dogs may bite because they are:
Like any animal, dogs deserve respect of their personal space. We may own them, but that doesn’t change the fact that they are animals with unique personalities. A dog’s reaction depends on that specific dog and the situation it’s in.
Responsible dog owners should be aware of their dog’s mannerisms and tendencies. They should educate others on how to approach their dog and warn people if their dog can be aggressive.
The following tips won’t necessarily prevent a dog bite, but they can help avoid situations where dog bites may occur:
We live in Friendship, Wisconsin, and Boller & Vaughan came to our doorstep to discuss our mother’s wrongful death claim on a Saturday morning. Not only were we pleased with the large recovery, we were so thankful to have lawyers who were willing to explain to us every twist and turn along the way. It is great to know there is a law firm that will fight for the rights of elderly people all over Wisconsin.
Mr. Boller and Ms. Vaughan were incredible in working on my case and my daughter’s case. I was out of work and in the hospital with a new baby. Mr. Boller and Ms. Vaughan protected our rights and it was a pleasure to work with them. I hope never to be in another motor vehicle accident, however, if I am and I am injured, I will contact Boller & Vaughan immediately.
I was referred to Michelle through a friend. I have never had a better experience. It took a little over a year to get my settlement but the staff there stayed in constant contact and kept me in the loop. Oh, and Michelle actually got me MORE money than we discussed. I will refer anyone to this firm. Words cannot do justice the thanks that I have for Michelle and her staff (Mary especially) thank you guys so much!
After my husband died as a result of a motor vehicle accident, Boller & Vaughan spent countless hours talking with me, meeting with me in person, and making sure that I was okay. The drunk driver who hit us did not have any insurance, and we had to make a claim through our own insurance. Boller & Vaughan was fantastic at explaining the law to me and the handling of our claims.
After my son was injured in a daycare setting, Ms. Vaughan took the time to thoroughly investigate our case and my son’s injuries. Michele was approachable and had answers to our questions. Talking with her helped to relieve many of our anxieties.
A dog can bite in an instant with little to no warning. While adults are often dog bite victims, children are much more likely to be injured by attacks. Remember the following tips if you or someone you know is bitten by a dog:
Your initial consultation with our lawyers is FREE. During your consultation we will evaluate the merits of your case and give you our honest opinion of whether or not it is worth pursuing.
Not only do dog bites leave physical scars, they can leave emotional scars as well. Some people have had such traumatic experiences with dogs that they cannot own or be around them.
If you or a loved one was the victim of a dog bite, you may be able to seek compensation for medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Wisconsin’s statute of limitations for dog bite victims is three years from the date the injury occurred, so don’t wait.
To find out what your case could be worth, contact the attorneys at Boller & Vaughan. We provide FREE consultations and won’t charge for our services unless we win your case. Contact us online to schedule your appointment or call us at 608-268-0268.