Tennessee Personal Injury Law: Dog Bite Injuries
In the state of Tennessee, dog owners are required to maintain proper safety precautions and exercise appropriate control over their dogs in order to ensure that the animal does not roam beyond their properties. In accidents involving dog bites, the owner is responsible for damages and injuries that result. Under today’s legislation, a dog owner might not be liable if they can prove unawareness of a dog’s capacity to cause dangerous situations. Other exceptions include, but are not necessarily limited to:
- Trespassers on properties with dogs;
- Situations in which a dog is kenneled, or boarded during the incident;
- Victims tease or tempt dog into initiated the attack;
- Situations in which the offending dog was protecting its owner;
- Military or police dogs.
Statistics For Dog Bite Injuries
A yearly study conducted by the American Humane Association reports upwards of 78 million dog owners in the United States. Bite statistics show that about half of these dogs will cause harm in a bite-related situation, with approximately 800,000 of victims in such cases needing medical treatment. The factors involved in the environment in which a bite occurs are important considerations, and over half of reported dog bite cases involve minor children with increased fatality risks.
Damages For Dog Bite Victims
Insurance companies generally cover dog bites across the board. A victim of a dog bite is allowed to receive compensation for medical expenses, resulting decreases in earnings, long-term disfigurement or incapacitation, and other reasonable damages.
Dog Bite Insurance Policies
Yearly studies show that insurance companies report dog bites as the most common cause of homeowner lawsuits, resulting in about a billion dollars in damages. Tennessee recognizes certain breeds of dogs as more likely to cause injury or accident, and these can limit or void potential homeowner insurance coverage for the dog owner. Dog owners may need supplementary insurance to cover risk of dog bite related accidents, since victims are almost always encouraged to press charges.
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Prevention Of Dog Bites
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, or CDC, offers the following tactics for dog bite prevention:
- Stay away from strange dogs.
- Do not move if approached by a strange dog.
- Do not disturb a dog with puppies, or who is sleeping or eating.
- Supervise all children playing with dogs.
- Do not make eye contact with strange dogs.
- Treat dogs with care and respect.
- Report any accidents involving dog bites immediately to the closest adult or relevant authority.
- Make strong efforts towards training new dogs.
- Contact veterinarians at the first sign of aggression in a dog’s behavior.
Filing Dog Bite Cases During Medical Treatment
Those who have been injured in a dog bite accident have the ability to pursue damages for any suffering or injuries incurred, even they are currently receiving medical treatment. Victims in these cases are advised to seek compensation as soon as possible, since circumstances are often time sensitive.
Legal Representation For Dog Bite Cases
Contact our offices if you or a loved one have suffered from a dog bite related accident. Dog owners are usually required to pay damages to victims in these situations, so you will probably be eligible for compensation. Our team of attorneys has the experience, connections, and resources ideal for securing the best possible outcome in any number of dog bite accidents. The longer you wait to seek representation and take legal action for injuries or suffering sustained from a dog bite, the higher the risk that you will not receive the full amount of compensation that you deserve. Set up an initial consultation as soon as possible, and start working one on one with a lawyer who can provide you with efficient navigation through the procedure and a successful outcome.