Animal bites occur more frequently than people realize, and many victims aren’t prepared to handle an attack properly. When you know how to respond to this situation, you can prevent further medical and financial complications. If someone else’s animal has bitten you, personal injury attorneys recommend taking the following actions to protect your health and your right to compensation.
What to Do After Being Bitten by Another Party’s Animal
1. Get Medical Attention
An animal attack can cause a variety of complications, including infection, nerve damage, or disfigurement. As such, it’s vital to get a medical examination right away to determine the full extent of your injuries and ensure you receive the correct treatment. This is not only crucial for your recovery, but it will also provide official records from a healthcare professional to help support a personal injury claim.
2. Gather Information About the Animal & Its Owner
Find out everything you can about the animal that bit you, such as whether it has a history of aggression and if it’s up-to-date on vaccines. You should also get the contact information and insurance details of the animal’s owner. In many cases, owners can be held liable for injuries their pet causes, which means they’ll be financially responsible for covering your medical expenses and other injury-related damages.
3. File a Report
Next, contact the correct law enforcement authority or animal control agency to report the attack. They will notify the owner that they must take precautions to prevent someone else from becoming a victim in the future. It also serves as legal documentation that can be used as evidence in your case.
4. Document Your Injuries
Take photos of your injuries before and after you receive medical care. This is essential for proving your diagnosis and showing how you’ve progressed. File away all medical bills, receipts for medications, and pay stubs showing your income loss. It’s also wise to keep a journal that describes how your injuries have affected your quality of life.
5. Explore Legal Options With a Personal Injury Attorney
A personal injury attorney will assess the circumstances surrounding the incident and determine if you have a valid claim. If so, they’ll help evaluate how much your injuries are worth and negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf. If necessary, they can also take your case to trial.
After experiencing an animal bite, seek counsel from Fitzpatrick, Skemp & Associates, LLC. Their personal injury attorneys will advise you on the complexities of filing a claim and help you build a strong case that demonstrates your right to maximum compensation. Since 1982, they’ve provided injury victims throughout La Crosse County, WI, with valuable guidance in the pursuit of justice. Call (877) 784-1230 to schedule a free consultation, or visit them online for more information about the cases they represent.