Dog Bite FAQs

What is the “one bite” rule?

The “one bite” rule is a law that requires proof that a dog owner had prior knowledge of their dog’s vicious capacities before they can be held liable for an attack victim’s injuries. However, this rule does not apply in Massachusetts. For the “one bite” rule to apply in Rhode Island, you must be inside the dog’s enclosure at the time of the attack.

Can I seek compensation for non-bite injuries?

Yes. Although commonly referred to as “dog bite” laws, they actually cover all animal attack-related injuries. So, for example, if you fell while being attacked by a dog, you would still be able to seek compensation for your injuries from the fall, as well as any bite-related injuries.

Can I still file a claim if I provoked the dog, either accidentally or purposefully?

This question is complicated. The most important thing to know is this: you should never make assumptions about your legal rights until you speak with an experienced attorney. Massachusetts’ dog bite law includes a specific exception for cases where the victim “was teasing, tormenting, or abusing” the dog, but Rhode Island’s law does not. To determine whether you have a claim under these circumstances, you’ll need a legal team to conduct a thorough investigation and careful analysis.

Why should I hire a lawyer to assist with my dog bite claim?

Animal bites and other attack-related injuries can lead to severe and lasting damage to muscles, nerves, ligaments, and tendons in the body—so it’s important that you get maximum compensation. Unfortunately, many insurance companies try to get victims like you to settle for less than you deserve. A lawyer can help you gather your medical records, investigate potential wage loss and medical expenses, and calculate a fair and accurate settlement.

Can dog bite victims get financial compensation for their pain and suffering?

Yes. 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.

How do I file a dog bite claim in Massachusetts or Rhode Island?

In most cases, you can file a dog bite claim by contacting the dog owner’s homeowner’s insurance—this is typically the fastest way to secure compensation for your medical bills, pain and suffering, and other losses. But if you’re unfamiliar with the process of filing a claim, you may want to rely on an experienced attorney for assistance. Insurance adjusters will likely offer you a settlement much lower than you deserve, so we recommend that you let us file your claim for you.

How much will it cost to hire Bottaro Law for my dog bite claim?

We handle dog bite cases on a contingency-fee basis, which means:

  • We don’t charge hourly rates.
  • we won’t ask you to pay a retainer fee upfront.
  • there are no hidden costs associated with your claim.

If we help you secure compensation, we’ll keep a percentage as our fee for representing you. But unless we help you get money for your claim, you won’t owe us anything—that’s our No Fee Guarantee®.

We’re Available 24/7!

Case Results

  • $1,200,000.00

    Auto products liability case involving airbag deployment resulting in loss of vision in one eye and facial fractures.

  • $660,000.00

    A 61-year-old man underwent emergency surgery and a knee replacement procedure due to injuries sustained in a serious motorcycle accident.

  • $650,000.00

    A pre-trial settlement was reached for our client who suffered a knee injury requiring multiple surgeries.

  • $600,000.00

    Our client suffered multi-level disc injury when steel I-beams fell from a commercial truck on Route 10 resulting in multiple cervical surgeries.

  • $500,000.00

    Personal Injury Attorney Mike Bottaro helps client who suffered amputations from complications after a nursing home injury.

  • $500,000.00

    This case involved an elderly couple and their granddaughter who were injured after a car turned left in front of their vehicle. The injuries for the woman involved a fractured neck, broken ribs, and an eventual stroke. The man suffered from various injuries from which he never recovered, resulting in his untimely death.

  • $325,000.00

    This case involved deviations in the standard of care involving pressure ulcers resulting in death.

  • $325,000.00

    Our North Kingstown, RI, client was injured in a bike accident, fracturing his patella and requiring emergency surgery. We worked with experts, including a life care planner to ensure our client received fair compensation.

More Case Results