According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Humane Society of the United States, there are about 4.7 million dog bites every year in the U.S. The Kalamazoo attorneys at Keilen Law, PLC represent young children, teenagers, adults, United States postal workers, UPS and FedEx delivery drivers, service providers, and building contractors in in Kalamazoo, Grand Rapids, Portage and all throughout Michigan when they’ve been a victim of a dog bite injury.
The injuries resulting from dog bites can be severe and can have a long-lasting negative impact on the bite victim’s life, especially children. Some of the more serious injuries dog bites cause are lacerations, deep puncture wounds, scarring, infections, rabies, bone fractures, nerve damages and death. These injuries can result in emergency room visits, specialist appointments, surgery, counseling, having to pay unanticipated medical expenses, lost time and money from work, severe physical and emotional pain & suffering, disability and loss of enjoyment of life.
Dog bite victims are entitled to have their medical bills paid, lost wages reimbursed, and be compensated fully and fairly for the physical and emotional toll a dog attack can have on the victim. Dog bite victims are protected by a special law in Michigan that holds the owner or harboror of a dog that injuries another person strictly liability for the injuries caused. This means that the dog bite victim does not have to prove that the dog owner was negligent in owning or controlling the dog. Instead, he or she is automatically liable. However, a dog attack victim who provokes the dog to bite or attack is not entitled to be compensated for the injuries sustained by the bite or in the attack.
In many instances, the victim of a dog bite knows the owner of the dog that attacked him or her. It is usually a family member, friend or neighbor, which creates an awkward situation and puts stress on the relationship. The victim rarely wants to sue his family member, friend or neighbor over the attack. Fortunately, the victim usually does not have to sue. This is because most dog bite compensation comes from the dog owner’s homeowner’s insurance company and not out of the owner’s pocket.
Once a homeowner’s insurance claim is opened, there is still a lot of work to be done before the insurance company will pay the victim full and fair compensation. The bite victims usually have little experience dealing with insurance companies and insurance claims, especially claims related to dog bites. As a result, claims made by injured individuals on their own usually result in the insurance companies’ denial of the claim or a substantially inadequate settlement offer.
Whether the bite takes place near Kalamazoo or Grand Rapids, understanding and having experience navigating Michigan’s dog bite laws and dealing with insurance companies is critical to maximizing the amount of the recovery to which the dog bite victim is entitled. The Southwest Michigan attorneys at Keilen Law, PLC have that experience and understanding of how to handle dog bite insurance claims and cases so that you and your loved ones are fully and fairly compensated for the injuries and damages sustained.