Dog Bite Lawyer in Lehigh County
Have you or a loved one been bitten by a dog in Lehigh Valley, PA? You may have the right to recover compensation from the dog’s owner (and other potential parties) to offset the costs of your medical treatment, lost wages, and suffering. The experienced dog bite lawyers at Cordisco & Saile LLC can maximize your financial recovery.
Our top-rated personal injury attorneys in Lehigh Valley are dedicated to helping injured victims and devastated families stand up to powerful insurance companies and defendants. Our legal team has decades of experience and has helped clients like you win millions of dollars in compensatory awards.
Contact our law office after your dog bite injury, and you’ll soon discover why we’re the award-winning litigators you want on your side for this fight. We offer a free consultation, so please give us a call or contact us online for assistance today.
Why should I hire a Lehigh Valley dog bite lawyer?
Animal attacks can be traumatic and have long-lasting effects. Unfortunately, you can’t expect the dog’s owner to admit responsibility or acknowledge that their animal attacked you. They might even try to say that you provoked the dog. You’ll need to make a strong case to win and recover the compensation you deserve.
That’s where our Lehigh Valley personal injury lawyers can help. At Cordisco & Saile LLC, our attorneys have been handling dog bite claims and other complex personal injury matters for decades. We know what you’re up against and have the experience, resources, and legal skills you’ll need to get the results you deserve.
We’ve helped dog bite injury victims recover top dollar in their claims, including a recent $750,000 settlement for a dog attack victim in Bucks County.
We also provide the level of service and compassion that you’ll need to get through this trying time. Our commitment to our clients is unmatched, and it’s why we have numerous five-star ratings and reviews.
While you take the time you deserve to recover from your dog bite injury, our legal team will:
- Investigate the circumstances leading up to and surrounding your dog bite
- Gather evidence that can help build your case and contest claims that you share responsibility for the attack
- Work closely with animal behaviorists, medical professionals, vocational rehabilitation specialists, and other experts as we build and value your claim for damages
- Negotiate with the dog owner, insurance company, and/or other parties on your behalf
- Bring your case to a jury if you aren’t offered a fair and reasonable settlement
Let us take on the stress and complexities of your dog bite injury lawsuit. We’ll fight to get you the money you deserve – and not a penny less. We offer a free initial case evaluation, so reach out to our team serving the Lehigh Valley region of Pennsylvania to get started.
Understanding Liability in Dog Bite Cases
If a dog has bitten you, you may have questions. Who’s responsible for your injuries? What do you have to prove? Here’s what you need to know about liability in your dog bite injury claim.
Does Pennsylvania have a one-bite rule?
Unlike many other states, Pennsylvania does not have a one-bite rule. This is good news for you as a victim of an animal attack.
A one-bite rule means that the dog’s owner isn’t automatically responsible the first time they bite someone. In Pennsylvania, liability is automatic, regardless of the dog’s history. However, dog owners are only liable for the resulting medical bills and the treatment cost. Unless the dog can be classified as dangerous under state law, you’ll have to prove the owner’s negligence to recover additional damages.
What is a dangerous dog?
According to the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture, a dangerous dog has:
- Attacked a human and caused severe injury without provocation (on public or private property)
- Attacked a domestic animal, causing severe injury or death, without provocation off its own property
- Been used to help commit a crime
A severe injury includes trauma that causes disfiguring lacerations, broken bones, or injuries requiring multiple stitches or cosmetic surgery.
The dog must also have a history or propensity of attacking humans or pets unprovoked. Once a dog is classified as dangerous, owners must take additional precautions to prevent the dog from harming people or animals.
A dangerous dog must be kept in a proper enclosure and leashed and muzzled when off the owner’s premises. Owners must also display a sign indicating a dangerous dog on the premises to warn others.
If you’re bitten by a dangerous dog and the owner has failed to take any of the steps required by law, the path to proving liability and recovering compensation can be more straightforward.
What do I have to prove to win a dog bite injury case?
To recover expenses, you simply have to prove that you were bitten by a dog and identify the owner. To recover additional damages, you’ll typically have to establish that the dog’s owner was negligent.
Negligence means proving:
- The dog’s owner owed you a duty of care
- The dog’s owner breached this duty of care by failing to act reasonably
- You suffered injuries because of the owner’s unreasonable behavior
- You have sustained damages – medical bills, disability, chronic pain – as a result
In Pennsylvania, the burden is on you, the dog bite victim, to prove your claim by what’s known as a preponderance of the evidence. Simply put, this just means that your argument has to be more likely true than not.
What happens if the owner says I provoked the dog?
Provocation can be used as a defense in dog bite injury cases. If it’s established that you provoked the dog, you could share responsibility and find that your damages are reduced. Under Pennsylvania Statute § 7102, the state operates under a modified comparative negligence system with a 51 percent bar to financial recovery. Damages are directly proportional to the degree of fault – up to 51 percent. Once you’re primarily at fault, the right to compensation disappears.
The provocation defense typically can’t be used when the dog bite victim is a young child. It’s generally accepted that children, especially very young children, lack impulse control and don’t always appreciate the potential consequences of their actions.
Who can be liable for a dog bite injury in Pennsylvania?
It’s not just dog owners who can potentially be liable for a dog attack in Lehigh Valley. You could have a legitimate premises liability or negligence claim against anyone who contributes to your injury, including:
- Property owners
- Dog walkers
- Dog groomers
Work with an attorney who will get to the bottom of what happened and hold all liable parties fully accountable for your dog bite injuries and suffering. Contact Cordisco & Saile LLC today.
Have you suffered an injury?
Damages Available to Dog Bite Injury Victims
As a dog bite victim, you may have the right to recover compensation for your financial losses as well as the pain and suffering you’ve experienced.
These compensatory damages are referred to as economic damages and non-economic damages, respectively, and can include:
- Present and future medical expenses
- Physical therapy
- Vocational rehabilitation
- Lost wages
- Lost work benefits
- Nursing care
- Chronic physical pain
- Loss of consortium
- Reduced quality of life
Our dog bite attorneys in Lehigh Valley will work hard to identify all damages and understand the full scope and impact of your dog bite injuries. We’ll consult with experts and rely on their insight as we work to calculate what your dog bite injury case is worth.
Types of Dog Bite Injuries We Handle
At Cordisco & Saile LLC, our personal injury attorneys represent dog bite victims who have suffered a range of injuries:
- Puncture wounds
- Lacerations and cuts
- Eye injury
- Facial damage
- Dental injury
- Vision or hearing loss
- Broken bones and fractures
- Crushing injury
- Soft tissue injury
- Traumatic brain injury
- Spinal cord injury
- Partial or complete amputation
- Nerve damage
- Neck or back injury
- Wrongful death of a family member in a fatal dog attack, and
- Other catastrophic injuries.
What should you do after a dog bite?
A dog bite can be a traumatizing and emotional experience. Keep the following tips in mind following a dog bite:
- Seek medical treatment immediately after a dog bites you or a loved one. Travel to the closest emergency room or hospital to get checked out. Dog bites can be severe, and waiting to get treatment can affect your recovery.
- Contact the proper authorities. The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture Dog Law Enforcement Office is a good start. An official dog warden will investigate your dog bite and incident.
- Document the incident by gathering information about the dog, owners, and dog bite. Take pictures, if possible, and keep all medical records from the incident.
- Once your condition is stable, don’t hesitate to reach out to our compassionate legal team to discuss your dog bite injury case.
Contact Our Lehigh Valley Dog Bite Lawyers for a Free Case Review
Pennsylvania law gives you two years from the date of your dog bite to file a claim for damages, known as the statute of limitations. Once the statute of limitations expires, so does your opportunity to assert your legal rights and demand the compensation you deserve.
Don’t let well-deserved money slip away. Reach out to the Lehigh Valley dog bite lawyers at Cordisco & Saile LLC as soon as you can after you’re attacked. We can build a strategy for financial recovery and implement a plan as soon as you ask for our help.
We work on contingency, which means there’s no out-of-pocket cost to hire our personal injury law firm. You only pay if we win your case – and our fee comes from your financial award. There’s no risk in asking for our help. Contact our Lehigh Valley team to schedule a free consultation today.
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