Thomaston Dog Bite Attorneys
Many dogs in Thomaston are part of the family and provide companionship to both adults and children, but they are also animals that may be prone to unpredictable behavior. Our committed and experienced Thomaston dog bite attorneys understand that dog attacks and dog maulings are often terrifying, stressful, painful and disabling. Most people in Thomaston or throughout Georgia do not worry about being bitten by a dog or attacked by an animal until it happens. However, dog attacks are much more common than many people realize, ranging in severity from minor bites that do not break the skin to potentially fatal maulings.
You Think Dog Bites Are Rare? Think Again!
Approximately five million people suffer dog bites annually in the United States, and almost 100,000 people suffer injuries that are serious enough to require emergency room treatment. Children are particularly vulnerable to dog attacks and often suffer serious or even fatal injuries. At our Thomaston dog bite law firm of Montlick and Associates, we have been representing Thomaston dog bite victims since 1984. We effectively navigate legal and homeowner’s insurance issues so that our clients can seek full financial compensation, including those who suffer significant injuries or require extensive reconstructive surgery to repair disfiguring facial injuries following a vicious Thomaston dog attack.
Georgia law provides multiple theories of liability in dog bite and dog mauling cases. If you are attacked, bitten, mauled, or injured in any fashion by the failure of a dog owner to control his or her dog, there are a number of legal theories that may provide a basis for seeking compensation for your injuries. Many people presume that a dog owner is not responsible for injuries caused in a dog bite incident unless the dog has previously bitten someone. However, this is a fundamental misunderstanding of Georgia law. The law in Georgia has been carefully constructed to protect dog bite victims and to shift financial responsibility for dog attack injuries to those who choose to own a dog.
Theories of Liability in Thomaston Dog Bite Cases
One Bite Rule: The common-law rule was referred to as the “One Bite Rule” and remains the law in Georgia. This legal principle is a bit of a misnomer because it suggests that in order to find a dog owner liable in a dog bite case, one must show that the dog bit someone before. While the name of this legal theory suggests that this is required, all that is really required is that it be shown the dog had vicious tendencies and that the owner knew or should have known of the dog’s propensity to be vicious. This knowledge requirement is called “scienter” and provides the foundation of the One Bite Rule. Although knowledge of a dog’s vicious tendency may be established based on a prior dog bite, other evidence may also be sufficient, including lunging at people, keeping the dog chained, training the dog to be aggressive, posting “Dog Bites” signs, muzzling the dog, or other similar acts that tend to show that the owner was aware or should have been aware that the dog might act viciously toward a third-party.
Violation of Leash Laws: When a dog owner violates ordinances that require dogs be confined or kept on a leash (i.e. leash laws), the owner may be strictly liable based on the doctrine of negligence per se. This theory of liability imposes legal responsibility for injuries caused by the violation of a safety law under certain conditions. Because negligence per se provides a basis for liability without fault and imposes no requirement that the owner have knowledge of the dog’s violent tendencies, it shifts responsibility back to the dog owner for the decision to own an animal that might injure a third-party.
Negligence: There is yet a third basis for imposing liability for a Thomaston dog bite or canine attack, which our knowledgeable team of Thomaston dog bite attorneys may utilize. Liability for a dog attack or mauling also may be based on negligence. If it is shown that a dog is not properly controlled or handled, liability may be based on negligence in controlling the dog. Negligence also is a theory that can be used when there are others besides the dog owner who contributes to the dog attack. Liability of third parties may be important when the dog owner lacks adequate insurance to cover the damages suffered by a dog bite victim.
Proven & Experienced Thomaston Dog Bite Lawyers
Although Georgia law provides extensive protection for those who suffer injuries caused by dogs, our dedicated Thomaston dog bite lawyers must carefully analyze the underlying facts surrounding our clients’ encounters with a dog to determine the legal theories likely to provide the best possible outcome. Typically, when negligence or the scienter requirement is relevant, careful investigation is necessary to establish that a dog owner knew or should have known that the dog had dangerous tendencies or to establish that the owner or handler did not take sufficient care to protect others from being injured. Our experienced Thomaston dog bite attorneys handle many cases involving attacks by dogs, ranging from simple bites to fatal dog maulings.
If you suffer injuries caused by a dog bite, dog mauling, or dog attack anywhere in Thomaston or the surrounding area, our experienced team of Thomaston dog bite lawyers may be able to help you recover a broad range of damages to compensate you for your injuries. Serious Thomaston dog mauling incidents can result in disfigurement, severe internal injuries, broken bones, or even fatalities. If you suffer any of these types of injuries in a Thomaston dog attack, our Thomaston dog attack law firm may be able to represent you in seeking necessary compensation, including lost wages, compensation for pain and suffering, medical bills, damages for disability and disfigurement, and other damages depending on the specific circumstances of your case.
If you or someone you love has suffered a serious personal injury or a loved one has died, our experienced Thomaston dog bite lawyers are committed to representing victims that suffer personal injury and wrongful death in obtaining the compensation they deserve. Call now for your FREE CONSULTATION with Montlick and Associates' experienced Thomaston dog attack attorneys. Our attorneys are available to help you and may even visit you if needed. You can call us anytime 24/7 at 1-800-LAW-NEED (1-800-529-6333) for your FREE CONSULTATION. Alternatively, you can visit our website, www.montlick.com, to make use of our FREE CASE EVALUATION FORM or 24-hour live online chat service.