Denver Dog Bite Injury Attorneys
Across the nation, 36 percent of households have one dog, and while their faithful companion will not harm the family, it is not the same for other interactions. Every year there are millions of cases of dog bites. While some breeds get a bad reputation for aggression, any dog can become vicious and attack under the right circumstances.
A dog attack is both physically and emotionally traumatizing. These animals are supposed to be man’s best friend, but they can still be the cause of extensive injuries and a new lifelong fear of dogs. You might have been a dog lover before the attack, and now you avoid dogs whenever possible, which changes your life.
Do not deal with the repercussions of another person’s negligence alone. When you suffer a dog bite, do not suffer in silence; take legal action, and get compensation for your losses. You will need a local dog bite injury lawyer to explain your rights and avenues for compensation recovery.
At Varner Faddis Elite Legal, we represent injury victims and achieve successful results for our clients, including six and seven-figure settlements and awards. Reach out to our team for a free case evaluation regarding your rights after a dog bite and severe injuries.
Table of Contents
- Dog Bite Liability
- How to file a claim?
- The severity of dog bite injuries
- Compensation available
- Evidence and documentation you need
- Speak with Varner Faddis Elite Legal, LLC
Dog Bite Liability
The most crucial element of a Colorado dog bite claim is determining liability. Since a dog cannot be legally responsible for its actions, someone else must bear the legal responsibility for the dog’s actions. There are some critical terms to note when determining liability in a dog bite claim.
The one-bite rule is a law that applies in certain areas where liability will depend on whether the owner was aware the dog was vicious or aggressive. Essentially the dog will get a one-bite pass before liability attaches to the owner. When the dog bites or attacks in a subsequent incident, the one-bite rule will no longer apply, and liability is more manageable.
Fortunately, Colorado is one state that has changed the one-bite rule. Instead, the law now holds dog owners strictly liable for dog bite injuries.
Other factors will affect your dog bite injury claim. The party that is most often held liable for a dog bite injury in Colorado is the dog owner. However, there are many stipulations where a dog owner may not be the responsible party.
If the dog was under the supervision of another person, such as a vet or boarding facility, those parties can bear some responsibility; dog walkers can also have some liability. You will need to discuss the details with a dog bite injury lawyer in your area.
If you were trespassing and their dog attacked you, the property owner is not responsible for your medical treatment or other losses. The only trespassing exception is if a person is under six.
Another factor to consider is a provocation that can exempt dog owners from liability. Provocation can include throwing rocks at the dog. However, the dog owner must prove that the victim provoked the dog before the attack.
Dog owners can become overly confident in their dog’s ability to control themselves and will disobey local leash laws or act in another negligent manner. There are state and local laws regarding dogs, and it is up to dog owners to follow these laws.
When a dog owner does not follow the law, they are liable for any damage the canine causes, especially if the dog attacks another person. Working dogs such as military or police dogs can exclude you from filing a claim. However, you can recover damages if these working dogs are not in an official capacity during the attack. Meet with our local dog bite injury lawyers to determine your legal options.
There are instances when a landlord is a liable party in a dog bite incident. The main reason a landlord will be responsible is if they knew the dog was on the property and it was a “clear potential for injury” to others who live or enter the premises.
How to file a claim?
Many dog bite victims do not think they have many options, but you do. You are not left to handle these traumatic events alone. You have the opportunity to file a personal injury claim in Colorado to recover compensation for your injury. These critical steps can help the outcome and validity of your claim.
After receiving medical attention, you will need to gather the contact information for the dog owner along with their renters or homeowners insurance information; you will also need to file a report with the animal control, which hospital staff can sometimes facilitate.
The local police department and humane society can file a report with animal control. You may not want to take this step, but it will help your recovery claim down the line. Your local animal control agency will also conduct an investigation and collect evidence, witness testimony, and more. Their investigation can help your personal injury claim.
The severity of dog bite injuries
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), one in every five dog attacks requires immediate medical attention. Many injuries result in permanent disfigurement or scarring. Dog owners or caregivers must be held responsible for the actions they took or did not take that led to your injuries and life-changing condition.
A minor injury might not result in legal action, but serious injuries do. Every dog attack is unique; even the same dog can cause different injuries in separate incidents. Treat every injury as severe. A small bite can quickly become infected, leading to emergency medical attention.
Reports show the following as the most common dog bite injuries:
- Teeth marks
- Broken bones
You might wonder how you can suffer from a broken bone from a dog attack. When a dog attacks, they do not only use their teeth, but they can knock victims over. When it is a large dog, its weight alone can crush you. Even the bite itself can crush bones in hands or other delicate body parts.
Severe dog attack injuries include:
- Nerve damage
- Traumatic brain injury
- Permanent scars
- Wrongful death
When a dog attacks, the owner might be unable to stop them from attacking, and the victim is at their mercy. A dog can continue to attack until the person is no longer conscious or breathing.
Per the CDC, close to 27,000 people across the country had reconstructive surgery after a dog attack. Additionally, the Insurance Information Institute reports that in 2018 there were 17,297 dog bite claims filed nationwide.
Any loss you suffer from a dog bite is recoverable through a Colorado dog bite injury claim. The severity of your injury will majorly impact the damages you can recover.
Most often, victims will recover payment for:
- Future Medical expenses
- Emergency medical expenses and surgery
- Emotional distress
- Pain and suffering
- Lost wages
- Scarring and disfigurement
- Permanent impairment damages
Every dog bite attack will have different outcomes. Dogs come in various breeds, meaning they can cause various damage. The bigger a dog, the stronger its teeth are. Small dogs can also cause significant damage since they are known for protecting their owners and space ferociously.
Evidence and documentation you need
When you file a report with animal control, they will investigate the cause of the incident, and your local dog bite injury lawyer will also conduct an investigation. We will look at the findings of the animal control agency and look for further evidence relevant to your case. An investigation is necessary if you did not file a report with your animal control agency.
You can also provide vital documents and evidence that your attorney is not privy to, like:
- Proof of rabies vaccine
- Dog owner contact Information
- Pictures of the dog
- Pictures of your injuries
- Dog license information
- Renters or homeowner’s insurance information for the dog owner
- Information on any prior incidents the dog had, if applicable
You should collect as much evidence and documents as you can. Often, dog attack victims in Colorado are physically unable to collect these items, which is why you need a local dog bite injury lawyer.
Choosing a dog bite attorney
After a dog bite injury, you will want to focus on recovery and may not want to focus on getting an attorney. However, you must choose the right attorney to ensure you get all the compensation you need. Looking at the attorney’s experience, especially regarding dog bite cases, is crucial.
Personal injury law covers various injury topics, and you must have a lawyer who understands local canine laws and your case’s implications. Varner Faddis Elite Legal, LLC has 32 years of experience in the personal injury space, including dog bite cases in Colorado.
Ask for references to get a firsthand account when you find a few lawyers you like. You can also schedule several different initial consultations to ensure you feel comfortable. Decide on the attorney who makes you feel comfortable and is not offering false promises.
Most law firms will offer free initial consultations in personal injury cases to determine if they can take the case and whether you want to move forward with your claim. Our firm provides hospital and home visits for victims with debilitating injuries.
Colorado dog bite laws
Colorado law addresses dangerous dogs. CRS § 13-21-124 classifies any domesticated animal related to foxes, wolves, coyotes, or jackals as a dog.
Some dangerous dog breeds include:
- Siberian husky
- Chow chow
- German shepherd
- Doberman pinscher
There are many other dangerous dog breeds in Colorado, but these are a few examples. Under the same statute, any person who suffers severe bodily injury or death after a dog bite can pursue and obtain economic damages from the dog owner. The Denver dog bite victim must be on public or private property in a legal capacity. Essentially the person must be on the property by implied or explicit consent by the property owner or performing an official duty.
Additionally, bodily injury in Colorado is any bodily injury with a risk of death, long-term loss, or permanent impairment. Injuries considered severe bodily injury include broken bones, fractures, burns, and more. Furthermore, the injury doesn’t have to happen at the moment of the attack; it can result later. For example, an infection may not appear until a few days after a dog bite.
Dog bite cases fall under strict liability, meaning the dog owner will have to pay for damages to the victim regardless of negligence.
Speak with Varner Faddis Elite Legal, LLC
Dog owners have a responsibility to supervise and control their dogs. All dogs must be on a leash when not in the home, especially those with aggressive tendencies. Homeowners must ensure they have a tall fence to keep the dogs inside and beware of dog signs that the public can see when approaching the property.
Even when owners do the right thing, however, dogs can attack unpredictably.
Varner Faddis Elite Legal, LLC offers creative options for compensation recovery. We have recovered substantial personal injury awards upwards of $1,130,000. Results will vary per the specific intricacies of your dog bite injury. Dog bites and injuries vary, and there is no way to tell how much your claims will be worth without looking at all aspects of your situation.
Our firm has over 32 years of combined experience in personal injury matters, including dog bites. We are result-oriented and innovative. You will have diligent and aggressive representation through every stage of your injury claim. We have innovative case management technology, so you are always abreast of where your case is and what will happen next.
It is critical to have a local dog bite injury lawyer who can explain dog bite laws and ensure you get the most for your damages. Contact our firm today at (720) 770-8335 for a client-invested approach to your claim.
6025 South Quebec St.
Centennial, CO 80111
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