How Do You Value a Dog Bite Case?
November 10, 2018
Valuing a case–any type of personal injury case–can be very complex, and dog bite personal injury cases are no different. There could be many factors that may affect the value of a dog bite case.
Some dog bite injuries result in scarring. If it’s a scarring to the face, or hands, or feet, or scarring that’s particularly disfiguring or noticeable, then this could increase the value of a dog bite personal injury case.
Other types of injuries include lacerations, cuts, bruising, torn connective tissue, back injuries, broken bones.
These can all affect the value of your dog bite personal injury case. The actions that you take immediately after you suffer a dog bite injury can also affect the value of your case. Promptly seeking medical attention will document your injuries and help increase the value of your dog bite case. Gathering information or evidence that may disappear quickly after the dog bite attack is also important for the value of your dog bite case.
What Information to Collect
Establishing who owns the dog, or who’s responsible for the dog, or whether there are witnesses to the dog bite attack, gathering the names and contact information for these people is important to the value of your dog bite injury case. Contacting the local authorities such as County Animal Control or the police is also important to your dog bite injury case because it will document the incident. It’ll document the dog bite attack and your injuries, and the police have investigative tools that you may not have to investigate the dog bite injuries. If you are the victim of a dog bite, the other important thing that you should do is contact a qualified dog bite injury lawyer promptly.
The issue of whether there is insurance coverage is important for dog bite cases.
You could have a very good dog bite case with severe injuries. You could know the identity of the dog owner and can establish liability or responsibility on the part of the dog owner. But if there is no insurance, that may cause you to not have a viable dog bite injury case.
Paying for a Settlement or Verdict
A lot of people that I talk to are surprised to learn that homeowners’ insurance or possibly renter’s insurance would pay for the dog bite injuries. Those insurance policies can even be responsible to pay for dog bite injuries that happen when the dog attacks someone not even on the owner’s property. In these cases, the homeowner’s or renter’s insurance company would be responsible to pay for any verdict or settlement resulting from a dog bite personal injury lawsuit.
So, what happens if the dog owner has no insurance? Well, this can be problematic for your dog bite personal injury claim. In this case, a qualified dog bite personal injury lawyer would have to do an investigation into the assets of the dog owner to see if the dog owner has sufficient assets to pay a judgment or a settlement. Many viable, good dog bite personal injury cases never proceed because there’s simply no insurance coverage and the defendant does not have sufficient assets to pay a verdict, judgment, or settlement.