Were you or a family member bitten by someone else’s dog in Lebanon, PA? You may be entitled to recover compensation. An experienced lebanon dog bite lawyer at Marzzacco Niven & Associates can help you fight to recover money for medical expenses, lost wages, pain, suffering, and more.
Our lawyers have over 120 years of experience between us. We’ve recovered tens of millions of dollars on behalf of injured clients in Pennsylvania.
We have the experience, resources, and reputation you need to build the strongest case possible. Contact our law offices at (717) 995-8963 in Lebanon, Pennsylvania, today to schedule a free consultation.
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Why Should I Trust Marzzacco Niven & Associates To Handle My Lebanon Dog Bite Claim?
Pennsylvania’s dog bite laws can be complicated. The dog’s owner won’t automatically be responsible for covering all of your costs or compensating for your personal losses. Most dog bite victims have to fight with an insurance company to get even a portion of the money they deserve.
An experienced Lebanon personal injury attorney can handle that insurance battle for you. At Marzzacco Niven & Associates, members of our team have been recognized by Super Lawyers, Rising Stars, and the Best Lawyers of America.
We’ve been fighting for injured clients like you since 2008 and are prepared to:
- Launch a detailed investigation into the circumstances of the dog bite
- Gather strong evidence to present to the insurance companies
- Defend you when you’re blamed for provoking the dog
- Document the specific losses you have suffered due to the dog bite
- Retain expert witnesses when necessary to prove elements of your case
- Handle all negotiations with the dog’s owner and their insurance companies
Even if you love animals, you shouldn’t be responsible for the damage caused by someone else’s dog. If you were bitten by a dog or attacked by an animal, contact our personal injury law firm to learn more about how our Lebanon personal injury lawyers can help with your case.
Statistics on Dog Bites in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
According to CDC reports, about 4.5 million Americans are bitten by dogs each year. While most bites are minor, around 800,000 are serious enough to require medical attention.
Dog bites can also be expensive. That’s particularly true in Pennsylvania. According to an Insurance Information Institute study, Pennsylvania ranks sixth in the nation when it comes to dog bite claims. In 2022 alone, Pennsylvania insurance companies paid out about $53.6 million in dog bite injury claims.
Overview of Pennsylvania’s Dog Bite Laws
Every state has its own dog bite laws. Some states adopt a “one bite rule.” In these states, dog owners are only held responsible when they have reason to know their dog has vicious tendencies. Essentially, each dog gets one “free” bite before the dog’s owner can be liable for damages.
Pennsylvania is different. Pennsylvania follows a mixed “one bite” and strict liability dog bite law. Dog owners in Pennsylvania can be held responsible for damage caused by their dog regardless of whether the dog had vicious propensities or has bitten before.
However, dog owners are only strictly liable for the victim’s medical expenses.
How Do I Prove Liability Under Pennsylvania’s Dog Bite Law?
To recover damages above and beyond medical bills, the victim must prove one of the following:
- The dog had bitten someone else in the past
- The dog’s owner was negligent
You can prove the dog’s owner was negligent by establishing the following four elements:
- The owner’s legal duty of care
- A breach of duty occurred
- The breach caused the dog bite
- You suffered damages
All dog owners in Pennsylvania have a legal duty to:
- Keep the dog confined within the owner’s premises
- Keep the dog secured on a leash when in public places
- Make sure the dog is confined and unable to roam freely
Our dog bite injury attorneys in Lebanon will conduct an investigation and gather evidence to prove your case.
Examples of this evidence may include:
- Prior complaints about the animal
- Testimony from neighbors and eyewitnesses
- Video surveillance footage
- Whether the dog is classified as a “dangerous dog”
It’s not always easy to establish your right to compensation after suffering a dog bite injury. Contact our dog bite injury lawyers at Marzzacco Niven & Associates today to learn more about how our attorneys can help.
How Much Compensation Can I Recover for My Dog Bite Injuries?
If you were attacked by a dog, our dog bite injury lawyers in Lebanon will carefully review your case to determine how much compensation you deserve. All personal injury cases are different. While the severity of your injuries is an important factor, our lawyers will evaluate the entire picture.
Some examples of the factors that will be most relevant in calculating your case value include:
- The cost of your medical treatment
- Whether your doctor thinks you will need future medical care
- The nature and estimated cost of your future care and rehabilitation
- Whether you lose wages because of your dog bite injuries
- The trauma and suffering you endure
- The circumstances of the dog bite or animal attack
The more severe the injury, the greater your compensation award is likely to be. That’s because serious injuries can change your life in the most dramatic ways. Our lawyers are here to help you fight for the full amount you deserve. All you have to do is call for your free case review today.
What Types of Damages Are Available to Dog Bite Victims in Lebanon, PA?
The types of damages that are available will depend on the nature of the harm you have suffered.
- Past and future medical bills
- Lost wages while you recover or care for a child who was bitten
- Reduced earning potential
- Physical therapy
- Reconstructive surgeries
- Property damage
- Pain and suffering
- Permanent disfigurement and scarring
- Emotional distress
- PTSD and fear
- Diminished quality of life
- Damages for wrongful death
If you were bitten by a dog while working, you may also be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits to help with your lost wages and medical costs.
Can I Recover Damages if I’m Being Blamed for Provoking a Dog To Bite in Pennsylvania?
Many dog bite cases are based on negligence. Under Pennsylvania comparative negligence laws, the negligence of multiple parties may be taken into account when determining whether the injured party is entitled to damages.
You may be entitled to partial compensation if the owner can prove you provoked the dog. However, you are barred from seeking compensation once your percentage of fault reaches 51%.
Don’t be surprised if someone tries to blame you for provoking the dog. The law gives the insurance company motivation to try pinning at least some of the blame on the victim. If someone is claiming you provoked the dog to bite, call our law firm to learn more about legal representation.
Our Lebanon Dog Bite Attorneys Will Fight To Recover Full Compensation for Your Injuries
At Marzzacco Niven & Associates, we often represent victims dog bites in Lebanon who have suffered:
- Puncture wounds
- Broken bones
- Nerve damage
- Facial injuries
- Damage to muscles, tendons, and ligaments
- Eye injuries
- Amputations caused by infections
Some animal attacks are so dramatic that the victim is forced to the ground, which can cause even more severe injuries, including:
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Head and neck injuries
- Back injuries
- Broken hips
It’s important to seek medical attention quickly if you were bitten by a dog. You should also consult the dog’s owner to determine whether the animal has been properly vaccinated. Prompt medical treatment is the best way to prevent infections and more serious damage.
Who Is Liable for My Damages After a Dog Bite Attack in Lebanon, Pennsylvania?
Typically, it is the dog’s owner who will be responsible for paying your damages. Most homeowners’ and renters’ insurance policies cover dog bite injuries.
That said, it’s also possible that someone else could be held responsible for your injuries. Identifying all liable parties can be especially important if the dog owner’s insurance doesn’t cover all of your damages.
Depending on the circumstances, the following parties may share legal liability for your damages:
- Dog walkers
- Pet sitters
- Business owners who allow unrestrained dogs on their premises
- Dog boarding facilities
Liability will often hinge on where the dog bite occurred and who was responsible for the dog at the time of the attack.
How Long Do I Have To File a Dog Bite Lawsuit in Pennsylvania?
After a dog bite, you have two years to file a personal injury lawsuit. The two-year statute of limitations starts to run on the date the dog bites you.
However, keep in mind that there are exceptions to this deadline in some instances. Contact our law office to determine the amount of time you have to file a lawsuit in your particular case.
Contact a Lebanon Dog Bite Lawyer for a Free Consultation
The animal’s owner may owe you compensation if you or a child were bitten by a dog. An experienced Lebanon dog bite attorney can help you understand the law and explain your legal options. Contact us at (717) 995-8963 today at Marzzacco Niven & Associates to learn more.