If you have a dog in Louisiana, you should understand what can happen if your dog attacks another party. Every day, dog bite attacks prompt many hospital visits. As a matter of fact, every year over 1,000 Americans have to visit hospital emergency rooms after they are bitten by a dog.
Large mastiff breed dogs, like pit bulls, account for most of these serious injuries. The physical injuries usually begin with the knockdown. When dogs slam into victims, these victims often sustain head injuries, broken bones, and other serious wounds. The physical injuries continue with bite injuries, which are often gruesome. These victims also sustain emotional injuries, especially if the victim is a child.
The home insurance companies that handle most of these claims have large groups of lawyers on their side. These attorneys look for ways to reduce or deny compensation to victims. In contrast, a Louisiana personal injury lawyer looks for ways to obtain maximum compensation for these victims. This compensation usually includes money for economic losses, such as the cost of medical bills, and noneconomic losses, such as pain and suffering. Additional punitive damages may be available as well, in some extreme cases.
The Pelican State has primary dog attack laws on the books. Essentially, Louisiana’s dog bite laws say that a dog’s owner will be the party liable to victims for the damages suffered after an attack. The law does indicate, though, that the owner must be shown to have known the dog’s nature was aggressive and was well aware of previous dangerous behavior towards others. If the dog owner did not have a history of his or her dog attacking, but given the dog’s demeanor and temperament, should have known that an attack could have happened, the owner will be held responsible for the costs to compensate a victim.
The provocation defense is available. Generally, in this context, provoking an animal is a physical activity that’s almost like torturing an animal. Aggressive teasing isn’t provocation.
Provocation usually makes victims ineligible for compensation. In negligence claims, provocation generally reduces the amount of compensation the dog owner must pay.
The assumption-of-the-risk defense is available in negligence cases. If the owner displayed a “Beware of Dog” or other warning sign, the assumption-of-the-risk defense is easier to prove. This proof requires the insurance company to show that the victim saw the sign, could read the sign, and could understand what the sign meant.
Work With a Compassionate Attorney
Dog attacks are horrifying and can also be traumatic, causing significant emotional damage to victims. The physical and emotional destruction a dog bite attack can have on a victim could be permanent and lifelong. Due to the severity of dog bite attacks, dog bite injury victims are usually entitled to substantial compensation.
For a confidential consultation with an experienced personal injury attorney in Shreveport, contact the Law Offices of Philip B. Adams. We handle legal matters throughout the Pelican State, including cases concerning dog bite attack victims.