A dog bite poses physical and mental effects on a victim. A severe dog bite can often result in serious costs from the long-term treatment duration and several reconstructive surgeries for your skin.
Some minor bites can also be incredibly painful and can become infected if not treated properly on time. Apart from the physical damages, there is an extensive range of emotional impacts of a dog bite. Most people, especially children, might develop devastating phobias or other mental concerns because of an animal attack.
Dog bites are so persistent in Georgia that the Department of Public Health has considered them health distress, particularly for children and the elderly. In 2016, Georgia was ranked in the top 10 U.S. states that have undergone the most dog bite insurance claims.
If you or your loved one has been injured, due to a dog bite in Georgia, you should know that the dog bite victims are eligible for compensation to recover from the damages caused.
You can ask an experienced personal injury lawyer in Georgia to determine the proper procedure and benefits you can attain through dog bite compensation claims.
What Costs Can I Recover in a Dog Bite Claim in Georgia?
As with many other personal injuries in Georgia, the person accountable for the accident is responsible for all damages and their coverage. As a victim, you can pursue financial recovery for the costs of your dog bite.
The costs you may be able to recover include:
This includes all the medical incidentals sustained immediately after the dog attack such as ambulance bills, prescription medications, emergency room treatment as well as ongoing costs for medical care, such as reconstructive surgery to repair scarring by a plastic surgeon or physical therapy.
A dog attack injury can prevent you from performing your work. That’s why you can also make a wage loss claim as part of your injury compensation coverage.
Pain And Suffering
The law gives dog bite victims compensation options for past and future pain and suffering. The court has constantly rejected restrictions on this type of non-economic compensation.
Many dog attacks might result in noticeable scarring caused by punctured wounds and nerve damage to the face, hands, and arms. Even after reconstructive surgery, most of these injuries stay visible throughout your life. Georgia laws and regulations allow retrieval for disfigurement in these circumstances.
A dog attack can not only cause physical injuries but also many psychological traumas to both adults and children. This results in depression and anxiety. In such situations, the law allows coverage for damages related to emotional trauma.
While infrequent, if a dog attack is severe and leaves a person with serious physical injuries that can prevent them from continuing their normal activities, a disability claim can also be made.
The total costs for these expenditures are added to create a compensation value against the dog bite. Georgia law has created policies for the ease and comfort of dog bite victims. A professional lawyer can further support an insurance claim against a dog’s owner to acquire compensation for your damages.
What Is the Average Settlement for a Dog Bite?
The exact value for each dog bite settlement might differ based on the details of the case. Insurance companies may try to evade paying what you deserve for a dog bite claim. That’s where a professional attorney can help you settle your claim without any issues.
To keep in mind, not all dog attacks cases are the same and financial damages differ. Typically, the awards can be categorized based on the severity of the dog attack. Factors that can impact the settlement amount for dog attack cases include:
- Visible scarring or disfigurement
- Permanent disability
- Emergency medical attention
- Surgery or extended medical care
- Need for mental health therapy and counseling focused on victims of dog bites
How Do I Get a Good Settlement for My Dog Bite Injuries?
The dog bites claim is submitted to the at-fault dog owner’s homeowners insurance companies. To pursue monetary reclamation for all your damages, your compensation claim will have to contain thorough evidence of the dog attack and the owner’s responsibility.
There are three main sections a dog bite insurance claim should contain:
- Demonstration of Georgia dog bite law
- All the applicable evidence, i.e. medical evidence
- Demand for compensation based on your damages and suffering
The evidence should include information regarding the victim, medical treatment, lost wages, photographs of your injuries, and reports from witnesses to the attack. Plus, you should also highlight any scarring or disabilities resulting from the attack.
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Even after providing all evidence, the dog owner’s insurance company can contradict your first claim or try to offer you a smaller sum of money upfront. Their main goal is to force you to accept a small settlement so that the case is closed for good.
You should never accept such offers and refer to a professional personal injury attorney. We, at 1Georgia Injury Lawyers, will support your claim and fight for your rights as a victim. We will estimate a fair settlement value based on your costs and losses, counting emotional pain and suffering.