Myrtle Beach Dog Bite Lawyer
Dogs can be valuable companions and can even end up feeling like members of the family. They can, however, also be extremely dangerous. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that as many as 4.5 million people are bitten by dogs every year in the U.S. Dog bites, besides being more common than most people realize, can also often lead to injury claims that are difficult for victims to pursue on their own. For help navigating your own dog bite claim, please reach out to an experienced Myrtle Beach dog bite lawyer today.
Common Dog Bite Injuries
Animal attacks, and dog bites in particular, can result in serious injuries, including everything from puncture wounds to lacerations. Bites also come with a serious risk of infection, nerve damage, fracture, and amputation. Treating these injuries isn’t always simple either. Many people require multiple surgeries, physical therapy, expensive prescription medications, and antibiotics. Even when healed, dog bite victims often suffer from permanent repercussions, like scarring and disfigurement, muscle loss, and limited mobility. These physical problems don’t even account for the emotional trauma of being attacked by an animal, which can cause anxiety and depression that affect a victim’s quality of life. Besides being able to recover compensation for their medical bills and lost wages, a victim could be entitled to reimbursement for pain and suffering and even emotional distress.
South Carolina is a strict liability state when it comes to dog bites. This means that unlike many other states that follow a “one bite rule” South Carolina courts will hold a dog’s owner liable for causing an injury even if it is the first time the dog was aggressive. This, however, is only true in cases where the dog was in public, or lawfully in a private place. There is also an exception to this rule, under which a dog’s owner could escape liability that applies in cases where a dog was provoked or harassed into biting someone.
Filing a Claim
Most dog bite injury claims are initially filed with the dog owner’s homeowners’ insurance policy provider. The first step in this process usually involves sending a demand letter that states how much the injured party is seeking, an amount that must be based on a clear and honest evaluation of the case. Eventually, the claimant will need to provide proof of treatment in the form of medical bills, as well as paystubs demonstrating how much he or she lost in wages while recuperating. It may also be necessary, however, to seek out the aid of a medical expert who can give a clearer estimate on expenses that are more difficult to calculate, like future medical costs. If a person doesn’t have adequate insurance to cover these losses, the victim may need to file a claim against that individual in court.
Schedule a Free Consultation with a Myrtle Beach Dog Bite Lawyer
To learn more about filing a dog bite claim in South Carolina, reach out to the dedicated and compassionate Myrtle Beach dog bite lawyers at The Stanley Law Group today.