Rhode Island Dog Bite & Animal Attack Lawyers
Dog owners in Rhode Island are responsible for keeping their pets under control — especially when around other people or animals. Unfortunately, even the most well-behaved dogs can lash out and attack those around them. Although dog bite injuries may not seem serious at first, they can lead to severe infection, illness, or permanent disfigurement.
Dog bites can cause significant injuries and illnesses that lead to substantial medical expenses. Sometimes, victims of dog bites are so fearful of the repercussions to the dog or its owner that they don’t seek proper treatment or compensation for their injuries. The truth is that insurance companies are the ones who should pay for a dog bite injury. But you can’t rely on them to pay what they should without a fight.
Mike and his experienced legal team at Bottaro Law understand the tremendous impact a dog bite can have on you and your family. Our Rhode Island dog bite attorneys are committed to helping you get the money you need to recover from your injuries.
You shouldn’t have to suffer because of a negligent dog owner. Act now to discuss your case with an experienced dog bite attorney with Bottaro Law. Our exclusive No Fee Guarantee means you can get honest legal advice and help navigating your claim without paying a dime upfront. In fact, we don’t get paid unless we recover compensation for you.
Contact our Rhode Island office today to set up a free case review.
Why You Need Our Rhode Island Dog Bite Lawyers
If you or a loved one suffered injuries due to a dog bite or dog attack, you deserve the best legal help.
Rhode Island dog bite claims can be challenging. The laws governing dog bites are complex. Seeking compensation can be emotionally taxing, especially if the dog’s owner is a friend or family member. You need an attorney who knows how to investigate an attack to prove a dog owner is liable and where to turn for the compensation you need. Often, this means negotiating with homeowners’ insurance providers rather than going up against the dog’s owner directly.
At Bottaro Law, we are ready to fight for the maximum compensation you deserve while helping you preserve your relationships. In cases where a more aggressive stance is needed, we won’t shy away from fighting to secure you all the money you deserve.
Common Types of Dog Bite Injuries
The domestic dog descends from wolves and other species of wild canines that hunt for their food. Like their ancestors, modern domestic dog breeds are still capable of causing traumatic injuries to other animals and people. Some of the most common types of dog bite injuries include:
- Puncture wounds
- Broken bones
- Facial injuries
- Eye injuries
- Soft tissue damage
- Nerve damage
- Internal bleeding
Bacteria colonies found in dogs’ mouths may also cause severe infections and illnesses. Studies indicate that as many as 15 to 20 percent of bite wounds become infected. Medical conditions caused by dog bites can include:
Responsible dog owners should keep their pets up to date on all necessary vaccinations, including rabies. Although cases of rabies caused by domestic dogs are rare in the United States, you should immediately seek medical attention if a dog bites you. Medical measures can prevent the disease from taking hold.
Dog Bite Laws in Rhode Island
Strict liability rules apply when a dog injures someone off the owner’s property in Rhode Island. Strict liability means the owner is liable for any damage the dog causes, regardless of the animal’s history.
Strict liability also applies when a person is injured while on the dog owner’s property, and the dog is in an enclosure, with a caveat known as the “one-bite” rule. The rule holds that a dog owner is liable for an injury only if they know the dog would act dangerously or aggressively. Evidence that might suggest an owner knows their animals may pose a threat to others includes:
- History of biting people or animals
- A history of aggression without a bite
- Owning a historically aggressive breed
The most important thing to know is this: you should never make assumptions about your legal rights until you speak with an experienced attorney. To determine whether you have a claim under Rhode Island law, you’ll need a legal team to conduct a thorough investigation and careful analysis. Mike and his team at Bottaro Law are ready to review your situation and discuss your options.
Compensation Available for a Rhode Island Dog Bite
Following a dog bite, you may be able to seek compensation for losses such as:
- Medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Loss of future earning capacity
- Pain and suffering
The value of your claim will depend on the circumstances of your case. Our experienced Rhode Island dog bite attorneys can help you calculate the value of your case.
Many dog owners are covered by their homeowners’ or renters’ insurance policy, meaning you can file a claim with the dog owner’s insurance provider. If the insurance company won’t agree to a fair settlement, you may need to file a personal injury lawsuit to recover the compensation you deserve.
Insurance adjusters are unlikely to advise you of your full legal rights, which means they’ll probably offer you a lowball settlement. It’s important to have a lawyer on your side who can make sure you get maximum compensation for not only your injuries but also for your related pain and suffering, emotional distress, and other financial losses.
Is There a Time Limit for Filing a Dog Bite Lawsuit in Rhode Island?
Rhode Island gives individuals three years from the date of an injury to file suit against the liable party. Failing to file a lawsuit within the statute of limitations can limit your ability to recover valuable compensation. If you attempt to file a lawsuit after the deadline expires, the opposing side can ask for a dismissal, which the court will almost always grant.
In any event, you need to contact Mike and his team as soon as possible so we can get started on your case, working to get you the money you need faster.
What to Do After a Dog Bite in Rhode Island
The aftermath of a dog bite or attack can be traumatizing. However, there are steps you should immediately take to protect yourself and potentially strengthen your dog bite claim. Consider the following:
- Seek medical attention immediately.
- Ask the dog owner for their information. If possible, get the dog owner’s contact and insurance information. Also, ask about the vaccination status of the dog.
- Report the attack. You should report the incident to the local police department or contact animal control.
- Document the attack and your injuries. If you can, take photographs of the location of the attack and the dog. Additionally, photograph the extent of your injuries.