As friendly as most of us like to believe dogs are, the harsh reality is that dogs can be territorial and very aggressive. For this reason, dogs can attack at any given moment, whether or not you are familiar with the dog. According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, over 4.5 million people are bitten by dogs each year in the United States. Sadly, most dog bite injury victims never receive any form of compensation for their injuries.
If you or someone you love was injured after a dog bite attack, it is imperative to seek legal counsel. An experienced and professional dog bite injury attorney will ensure you receive the compensation you deserve.
Dedicated Legal Support Helping Injured Dog Bite Victims
At Smith & Williams Law Firm, LLC, the dedicated team of attorneys is committed to bringing exemplary legal support to dog bite injury victims, helping them recover the compensation they need for their damages. The attorneys at the firm are passionate about making sure negligent pet owners are held responsible for their inability to control their pets and ensure the safety of others. The attorneys at Smith & Williams Law Firm, LLC put their resources to work, ensuring the rights of their clients are protected. After a dog bite injury, schedule a no-obligation consultation with the firm by calling (908) 264-7228 or complete the confidential online contact form here.
Strict Liability in Dog Bite Injury Cases
When a person is bitten by a dog, the injury caused by the attack can be devastating. Fortunately, New Jersey laws favor injured victims. The state recognizes that while dogs can bring happiness, safety, and love to many families, the dog owners have an obligation to ensure the dog does not place others in danger of harm. In most cases, dog owners are subject to the state’s strict liability law, codified as N.J.S.A §4:19-16.
According to New Jersey’s strict liability law, when a person suffers a bite attack resulting in damages, the dog owner will be held strictly responsible for those damages when the attack took place in: A public area, such as a park; or a private place the injured person was legally within, including the dog owner’s home.
Dog owners will also be held accountable regardless of whether or not they knew the dog was aggressive, had previously bitten another person, or had vicious tendencies.
Common Types of Dog Bite Injuries
A dog bite attack can take a number of different forms, and it can lead to a wide range of injuries. The following list highlights the most common types of dog bite injuries.
- Deep Lacerations – These injuries are deep tears or cuts in the skin, and they often go past the epidermis and into the person’s muscles, nerves, bones, and blood vessels. Most of these wounds will appear uneven and in a zig-zag pattern. They also tend to result in excessive bleeding. When a person suffers a laceration, it is important that the injury is treated by a medical professional, as the injury will likely require stitching and prescription medication.
- Puncture Wounds – Since dogs have very sharp teeth, most bites will include puncture wounds, where the teeth will pierce the person’s skin. While these injuries may give the appearance of being far smaller than most injuries, they can be deep. For this reason, puncture wounds can be very serious, as there is a heightened risk of infection.
- Infections – There is a large percentage of dog bites that lead to infections. An infection can come from the bacteria typically found in a dog’s mouth. After every dog bite attack, it is always important to clean the wound, regardless of whether the injury appears to be very small. When a dog bite has become infected, there may be swelling, pain, and redness around the bite. Every infection should be treated by a medical professional.
- Rabies – The worst type of infection a person can get from a bite is rabies. Every year, there are approximately 50,000 deaths caused by rabies around the world. Fortunately, the risk of death caused by rabies is minimal in the United States. Still, it is important to keep in mind that if an owner is not responsible for making sure the dog is properly secured, the owner is likely not responsible for the dog’s vaccinations either.
- Scarring – When the dog bite injury involves deep abrasions, the injury will likely scar. Depending on the extent of the laceration and its location, the scar tissue can be socially debilitating and embarrassing. It can also cause nerve damage and affect the victim’s mobility. To reduce such effects, doctors may need to use laser therapy on the affected area or do a skin graft.
Obtain the Support of a Skilled Dog Bite Injury Attorney
Dog bites can cause serious injuries, including deep lacerations and infections. Depending on the extent of these injuries, emergency medical care may be needed, which could result in extensive medical expenses. If you or someone you love was bitten by a dog, the State of New Jersey’s strict dog bite law is on your side. The state acknowledges the seriousness of these cases and holds dog owners strictly responsible for the damages their dog has caused in the aftermath of a bite attack. To ensure your rights are upheld, consider obtaining the support of a skilled dog bite injury attorney who will advocate on your behalf.
After a serious dog bite injury, effective legal representation is absolutely necessary. The experienced dog bite injury attorneys at Smith & Williams Law Firm, LLC have established a reputation of skilled and strategic representation, which makes a difference in successful cases. If you have suffered a dog bite injury, the firm will work tirelessly to resolve your case as efficiently and effectively as possible. The proficient attorneys at Smith & Williams Law Firm, LLC will work relentlessly to ensure you obtain the highest compensation possible. To schedule a no-cost consultation with the firm, fill out the confidential online form or call (908) 264-7228 today.