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Dog bites can be deeply traumatic events, capable of causing severe short term and/or long term injuries or trauma. Addressing these incidents involves more than just medical care; it also requires navigating a complex legal landscape to seek fair compensation. Understanding the specifics of liability, negligence, and local dog-bite statutes is essential for victims to effectively advocate for their rights and secure the necessary support to heal and recover.

Liability Held by Dog Owners

Liability refers to the legal responsibility one party has for the damages or injuries caused to another. In the state of Indiana, there is a strict liability rule in place for situations where a dog bites someone, provided the victim was conducting themselves peaceably and lawfully. This liability rule is also not dependent on whether the dog has previously shown aggression or the owner knew of any aggressive tendencies. This essentially means that Indiana does not require the victim to prove the dog was known to be dangerous beforehand in order to receive compensation for their damages. However, strict liability in Indiana may not apply if the victim was provoking the dog, trespassing, or committing a crime at the time of the attack.

Statute of Limitations

Statute of limitations refers to the law that sets a maximum time limit after an event takes place for the victim to file the case and for the legal proceedings to be initiated. In Indiana, the statute of limitations for initiating a dog bite case is two years within the date of the attack. It is crucial to file your case within the two year time period because once the statutory time limit has passed, claims can no longer be filed surrounding the dog bite incident.

How to Recover Compensation from a Dog Bite?

The main steps required to recover fair compensation when going through these cases would be to document the incident, get in contact with the dog’s owner, keep record of evidence and related documents, as well as consulting an attorney. 

Document the Incident: It is crucial that you document the incident thoroughly by taking photographs of the injuries and the location where the dog bite occurred, as well as collecting contact information from any witnesses. This information will help in establishing a detailed account of the incident, which is essential for gaining compensation in the case.

Contact the Dog’s Owner: It is also essential to obtain the contact information of the dog’s owner, and note any information about the dog’s history of aggression if known. This information will be beneficial to establishing the owner’s liability for the attack.

Keep Record of Evidence/ Related Documents: By maintaining a detailed record of all medical treatments, expenses, and any lost wages due to the incident, it will be a lot easier to determine fair compensation that must be received in the case. 

Consult an Attorney: Finally, you should be consulting an attorney that specializes in personal injury so that they may initiate the legal proceedings and get you the compensation you deserve for your damages.  

Our team at Kooi Law specializes in personal injury cases. If you’re dealing with a dog bite, let us know—we’re here to help you through the legal process and ensure you receive the compensation you deserve!

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