No one really expects an attack by an animal, especially not a pet who is expected to be friendly and safe. If you've been injured by an animal, you've suddenly found yourself in a bewildering world of medical terms and treatments, laws and regulations, and blame and accusations. Even if the pet owner (or person otherwise responsible for an animal's behavior) is cooperating and assures you he or she will compensate you, you still need to contact a skilled New Hampshire personal injury lawyer. There might be several factors that you don't know about that affect your rights in this situation. If the pet owner is not cooperating and denies responsibility, then you absolutely need a lawyer who can help you to make your case and receive the compensation you deserve.
Animal bite cases can be tricky because unless it happened in a very public place with a lot of people watching, there might be only a very few witnesses (even just yourself, or yourself and the owner) and not very much evidence. Unlike a case of, say, a car crash, where experts can analyze the physical evidence of the skid marks on the road, damage to adjacent guardrails or trees, and other factors that help to determine what happened and why, an animal bite case might boil down to your story, one or more other witnesses' stories, the bite mark, and possibly the animal's history.
You could face accusations from the other party, who will try to discredit your story. You could be accused of baiting, teasing, or tormenting the animal. You could be attacked as being untrustworthy because of other things that you've supposedly done, and therefore that your account of the accident shouldn't be believed. On your own it will be difficult to fight these tactics, but a skilled New Hampshire personal injury lawyer can deflect those defenses.
The major component of your case will be to prove fault. Was the owner negligent (insufficiently careful) in restraining the animal (such as not having it on a leash?) Was the owner reckless by training the animal to be aggressive or egging it on to threaten and intimidate people? The owner might argue that he or she acted properly by licensing, training, and controlling the animal, and that he or she therefore wasn't responsible for its behavior. A lawyer can unravel all of these factors and build a case that proves you deserve compensation.
It is important to call a lawyer quickly after the incident. Pictures of your would and of the scene of the accident will need to be taken as close to the time of the accident as possible. A skilled lawyer can also work with the animal control officers as they test the animal for rabies or other diseases, and gather evidence not only of the test results but also of observations of the animal's behavior, appearance, or other characteristics.
If the animal does have any diseases, it could have two important consequences: first, it could make it easier to prove that the animal owner was liable. It is obviously more irresponsible to allow a diseased animal to harm others than a healthy one. It could also add to your medical costs, pain and disability, time for treatment that takes away from work, and mental and emotional suffering to know that the dog is diseased.
A skilled New Hampshire personal injury attorney with Liberty Legal Services will be able to gather all of the necessary evidence and present it effectively to a jury. He might also be able to negotiate a settlement with the other side, convincing them that your case is so strong that it is in everyone's interest to agree on an amount for damages and avoid going to trial. Call us today for a lawyer consultation and receive the help you need.
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Liberty Legal Services PLLC. Main office: 250 Commercial St #3020 Manchester NH 03101. (603) 262-3196