NYC Dog Bite Lawyer
In a typical year, around 3,500 dog bites are recorded in New York City. Although the severity varies, this is nearly 10 dog bites every day – meaning dog bite injury cases are a common sight in emergency rooms.
Dog bites can be extremely traumatic – even small breeds are extremely powerful and can inflict significant wounds. When larger, even larger and more powerful breeds are involved, the wounds inflicted can easily become life-changing or fatal.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a dog attack, it’s essential that you understand your rights and work with an experienced dog bite lawyer. This gives you the very best chance get the kind of compensation that reflects the pain and suffering that you’ve experienced – as well as the trauma that may stay with you moving forward.
Acting on behalf of child victims
Tragically, children under the age of 17 are far more likely to be hurt by dogs than any other age category. In fact, dog bites are the leading cause of non-fatal life changing injuries each year in the U.S.
If you child or a child you’re responsible for has been injured in a dog attack, we can help you. We have a long and proud history of getting justice and damages for children and other vulnerable people – so you can be absolutely certain you’re in caring and compassion hands at Sakkas, Cahn & Weiss, LLP.
New York Dog Bite Laws
New York dog bite law can seem quite complex at first glance – especially because it mixes the approaches often taken in other areas and states. Most states implement either a ‘one-bite rule‘ or a ‘strict liability‘ approach.
Under the standard one-bite rule, dogs are effectively given one ‘free’ bite before an owner becomes liable for damages that could come from dog bite injuries. This approach is designed to give owners a level of leniency – since they may not know about the dog’s behavior until it has been demonstrated.
On the other hand, strict liability areas disregard this requirement for prior knowledge. The dog’s owner is responsible for economic damages resulting from an attack – regardless of whether or not the dog has shown this type of behavior before.
In New York, dog owners are subject to a blend of these approaches. For medical bills, a strict liability approach is adopted – but for damages other than medical costs, NYC operates a one-bite rule.
That said, if an owner is proven to be negligent in caring for or handling an animal, a dog bite claim could pursue compensation for additional damages even without prior behavior issues.
This mix of rules in New York law can be it tricky for dog bite victims to understand exactly what situation they’re faced with after an attack. Don’t worry though, an experienced New York dog bite attorney will understand the state’s “Dangerous Dog” statute and be able to pursue the maximum compensation for your case.
What happens when a dog has shown vicious behavior in the past?
Of course, one-bite rules can only apply the first time a dog is shown to be dangerous. If the was adequate previous evidence to show the dog’s “vicious propensities” then strict liability standards are likely to be imposed on the dog owner.
Such behavior could include:
- Previous complaints against the animal
- Previous dog attacks by the animal
- His or her dog wearing a muzzle
- Previous instances of the dog growling or baring teeth
There’s no cut-and-dry indicators of behavior though – each dog’s history will be considered individually before any decision is made.
Typical dog bite injuries
A dog bite victim could incur any number of injuries, including:
- Cuts, lacerations, and tears to soft tissue
- Broken bones
- Sprains, strains and bruises
- Crush injuries
- Head injuries
- Lost digits or limbs
- Spinal cord damage
Unfortunately, as animals that have descended from wild dogs, even pets can have a primal instinct that makes them effective at inflicting swift and extremely serious injuries. In the worst cases, this can lead to the death of someone who is attacked – especially if they are young or frail.
Whether we are helping your New York City dog bite injuries are minimal – or you’re exploring a dog bite lawsuit for wrongful death, you can be 100% confident that you’ll get the same level of dedication and compassion from a dedicated New York dog bite lawyer when you trust Sakkas, Cahn & Weiss, LLP, with your case.
Who can be held liable for dog attacks?
It’s natural to assume that dog owners are the people who are liable for dog bite injuries – but this isn’t always the case.
An absolutely vital part of personal injury law is understanding premises liability – and there are lots of instances where other people could be entirely or partly responsible for the attack.
Those people may include:
- Dog walkers
- Pet sitters
- Property owners
We will leave no stone unturned when it comes to investigating your case. By holding the right people responsible, we’re not just helping you to get the financial compensation you’re entitled to – we’re also working together to make sure these kinds of attacks are less-likely in the future.
What kind of damages might be available in dog bite cases?
There’s no guideline amount that a New York city dog attack lawsuit will bring – but we will do everything in our power to make sure you’re made “whole again”.
That doesn’t just mean recovering medical expenses and lost earnings. Those things are important – but they’re just part of a much larger list that includes:
- Past and future medical treatment and rehabilitation
- Plastic surgery or reconstructive surgery
- Lost wages and lost opportunities
- Specialist support and nursing case
- Property damage
- Pain and suffering
- Therapy to address emotional distress and potential PTSD
- Living with disfigurement and scaring
- Damages for the wrongful death of a loved one
We have expert in-house knowledge and a team of external experts who can provide outstanding advice around all of these areas. We will get you the compensation that accurately reflects what you have been through – and any challenges that the future may hold.
How long do you have to bring a dog bite lawsuit?
Personal injury law here in NYC gives you three years from the date of the attack to file a lawsuit.
That might feel like plenty of time – but it’s essential that you act sooner rather than later if you want the best chance of your case being successful.
With every day that passes, witnesses are less likely to be forthcoming or helpful, evidence becomes harder to find, people are potentially left unaccountable for their actions.
Steps to take after a dog attack
As experienced New York dog bite lawyers, we’ve seen countless cases where incorrect steps have been taken after an attack.
Doing the right thing doesn’t just keep you safe, it also increases your chances of success when your lawsuit is filed.
After making sure you and your loved ones are safe, you should:
- Try to identify the dog and owner. If it is safe to do so, neighbors, bystanders, and even local animal control can help with this.
- Get contact details and evidence from as many people as possible.
- Take photographs of the scene and injuries – and take as many notes as possible. Notes and photos are better than any memories of a traumatic event.
- Document all medical symptoms, medical visits, and how the attack has disrupted your life and routines.
Of course, this is in an ideal world – and we appreciate this won’t always be possible. Either way, your next step should always be getting in touch with a good NYC dog bite lawyer as soon as possible.
What Makes a Good New York Dog Bites Lawyer?
There are plenty of attorneys in NYC who can help you with a dog bite lawsuit – but not all will handle your case in the same way, and not all will get you the compensation you deserve.
So, what’s the difference? And how can you make sure you’re getting the best New York dog attack lawyer to fight in your corner?
It starts with how you and your case are handled. At Sakkas, Cahn & Weiss, LLP, we’ll do everything we can to make sure your initial free consultation is with a partner here at the firm. When it’s time for discovery work to be done, your case will still be handled by a highly experienced parter – never passed off or put to the bottom of the pile.
Then, there’s also your wishes to think about. With Sakkas, Cahn, and Weiss, LLP, we take the time to listen – no matter how long it takes to talk to us about your experience. We might be the legal experts – but you’re the expert about you, your circumstances, and your experiences.
We’re here to help you recover compensation and make sure that justice is properly served – but you’re in the driving seat. We’re here to serve dog bite victims in the best possible way.
Whether you sit down to talk to us or another law firm, we encourage you to keep these factors in mind – and if you ever feel like your attorney isn’t listening or doesn’t have your best interests at heart, then it’s time to find a law firm that does.
How Much is a Good Dog Bite Lawyer: New York Prices
Many people are under the impression that good legal representation is expensive. Sadly, this means many potential lawsuits never see the light of day – and justice is never served.
At Sakkas, Cahn and Weiss, LLP, we don’t want upfront costs and out of pocket expenses to get in the way of what’s right for you, so we don’t expect a single cent to be paid upfront.
Instead, we’ll talk to you about recovering our fee from the compensation you receive when your case is successful. It’ll be an agreed percentage too – so you never have to worry about legal costs spiralling out of your control.
What happens at an initial free consultation?
Most people don’t sit down with lawyers on a day-to-day basis, so the idea of coming to a law firm and talking about yourself and your case can feel a little intimidating.
At Sakkas, Cahn and Weiss, LLP, we do everything we can to put you at ease.
Firstly, you don’t necessarily have to come to us. We often visit potential clients in their own homes and sometimes even in hospital. It’s important to act quickly after a dog attack, so we’ll make it happen as quickly as we can.
When we get together, we’ll let you talk. We’ll listen carefully to you about the attack and what’s happened since. It’s our job to put together a full picture of your situation and talk to you about the kind of compensation we think could be suitable. We’ll consider everything from medical bills to the on-going need for support.
Sakkas, Cahn & Weiss, LLP, is here to help you in any way possible, so you should not wait to call our office today: 212-571-7171. You can also reach us by email.