Holding Pet Owners Accountable For Dog Bites And Animal Attacks
Dog bites can be severe and even deadly. A dog attack also takes an emotional toll on victims and their families, which can last a lifetime. If a dog recently bit or attacked you or a loved one, the experienced dog bite lawyers of Lindner Law, LLC, in Milwaukee and Appleton, will protect your rights. For more than 40 years, we have fought for compensation for dog bite victims. We are ready to work for you and handle every aspect of your case.
Determining Liability Is Not Always Easy
While it may seem like a dog bite case is easy to resolve, that’s not necessarily true. Insurance companies may make a settlement offer that is far less than what you need to cover the medical expenses, lost wages and other expenses you encounter. Also, Wisconsin state law for dog bite cases is complex. For example, you may be entitled to double damages under the law if the offending dog previously bit someone else.
At Lindner Law, LLC, our attorneys know how and where to obtain records from government agencies in order to uncover prior dog bites. We also have the resources to investigate every aspect of your case, including:
- Determinations as to whether there was proper restraint of the dog
- Determining where the bite occurred and the severity of the injuries
- The degree of the owner’s or keeper’s negligence
- Refuting insurance company arguments that you were somehow at fault for the dog biting you
We will identify and collect all evidence that supports your claim, and we will challenge any defenses that the dog owner or keeper tries to argue. For instance, we will know how to respond if the dog owner claims that you trespassed at the time of the attack or provoked the dog. We will always aggressively stand up for you.
Wisconsin Dog Bite Laws
In Wisconsin, the owner is strictly liable for the full amount of damages caused by the dog, subject to the defense of comparative negligence. However, Wisconsin law also recognizes that children under the age of seven are incapable of being guilty of negligence. For those children, the fact that the dog may have been teased or provoked is not a defense.
Wisconsin law states that if the owner knew that the animal had attacked or injured a person or property in a previous incident, then the owner is liable for two times the full damages. What many people do not know is that even if the dog injures another dog in a fight the owner could be liable for double damages on subsequent incidents, if he or she had been notified. Further, the law provides statutory penalties up to $500 if the owner had no prior notice of the dog causing previous injury and up to $1,000 if the owner had notice. Patrick O’Neill likes dogs but has seen the serious injuries they can cause. Dog owners need to be vigilant in order to avoid the damage they can inflict, especially to children. Families need to know that sometimes the family pet can do serious harm.
What Are Common Dog Bite Injuries?
Dog-bite facts from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
- 4.5 million people are bitten by dogs each year.
- Almost one in five of those who are bitten – a total of 885,000 – require medical attention for dog bite-related injuries.
- In 2006, more than 31,000 people underwent reconstructive surgery as a result of being bitten by dogs.
A dog bite injury can range from mild to catastrophic. Doctors can address some dog bite wounds with minimal medical care. In the worst cases, victims can suffer horrific injuries that include:
- Disfigurement, scarring and internal organ damage
- Punctures and infections
- Tendon, ligament and nerve damage
- Eye injuries
- Emotional distress
Dog bites can be traumatic for everyone involved. A large percentage of dog bite cases involve children as well as parents or family members who witnessed the attack. Our legal team will consider all aspects of your case and identify all sources of compensation available to you and your loved ones.
Dog bite cases often lead to significant bills for medical treatment, rehabilitation, surgeries, future operations and nursing care. At Lindner Law, LLC, we can help you manage your medical bills and gather your medical evidence. We can also assist you in paying your medical bills through health insurance or other coverage. Finally, we will work with your medical care providers to prevent bill collectors from harassing you during your recovery.
Our goal will be to fully calculate your losses and pursue a settlement that provides maximum compensation to you. However, we will be ready to fight for you at trial if that’s what it takes.
Speak With Us About Your Case
Regardless of whether you hire our firm to handle your claim, we can help you understand your options so you can make an informed decision about your next steps. Please don’t wait to contact us by calling 414-488-6870 or 888-217-1625 toll-free to set up a free initial consultation.