Kaufman & Stigger, PLLC, represents Louisville residents seriously hurt in dog bite incidents. Our lawyers protect victims who suffer hand injuries, including broken fingers and nerve damage, due to the negligence of a dog owner. Contact a dog bite lawyer to schedule a free consultation and find out what you should demand for your injuries. It’s an easy way to determine the best way to hold a dog owner and an insurance company responsible.
Should I Call a Lawyer After Getting Bitten on the Hand?
Some encounters with frightened and confused dogs end with a painful bite wound on the hand. A victim’s hands are often the easiest body part to reach for a dog. Victims may also be trying to pet a dog when an attack occurs.
If a bite barely breaks the skin or just leaves some bruising, victims may not need the help of a lawyer for their case. But when serious injuries and long-lasting damage are the result, the medical bills will be much higher. Insurance companies for dog owners will also fight much harder to avoid blame. Adjusters may try to blame you for what happened or try to cast doubt on how serious your injuries are.
Your Louisville Dog Bite Lawyer is a safeguard for your case and your recovery. Your lawyer fights back against these tactics and handles the frustrating parts of an injury claim and dealings with insurance adjusters. This gives you time to focus on healing. Your lawyer works to secure the most in compensation possible while you make strides toward a full recovery.
Who Is Responsible If I’m Bitten on the Hand by a Dog?
Dog bite victims may be left injured during a walk at Seneca Park when a dog is allowed too much room on a leash. A homeowner’s dog might lash out at a party for family and friends. These risks are common and in Kentucky, the dog’s owner is usually responsible for helping victims with recovery costs.
Kentucky follows the legal concept of “strict liability.” In some states, the dog owner isn’t held liable for a bite unless the dog has bitten before or has been labeled a dangerous dog. However, under Kentucky’s strict liability rule, owners are legally accountable, even if the dog has never shown aggression before.
Dog owners must show a “duty of care” to protect others from the possibility of a bite. They must restrain their dogs and control them so they aren’t given unwanted access to others.
Dog owners are held liable for most bites, but Kentucky law also permits pet owners and victims to share the fault in a dog bite incident. Victims may be assigned some blame if they were trespassing on private property when they were bitten. They may bear some blame if they provoke the dog or make a reckless decision such as approaching a growling dog.
The victim may still be able to secure financial help with recovery costs, but the award may be reduced by the percentage of blame the victim is assigned. But in most cases, the dog owner would bear the largest percentage of responsibility and victims could expect substantial financial help with their recovery costs.
Your Kaufman & Stigger, PLLC, dog bite lawyer would fully investigate your case and collect evidence to make sure you received as little of the blame as possible. And if you did nothing wrong, your lawyer would fight to get your blame reduced to zero.
Dog Bites On Hands Risks
We don’t realize how much we use our hands until their use is restricted, or they become painful to use. The crushing force of a dog’s mouth can rip soft tissue and break the delicate bones in the hands. A dog’s salvia also carries bacteria that can be harmful to humans. Infections can arise, making wounds even slower to heal.
The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons reports that nerve damage can result in numbness in hands (perhaps permanently) and a loss of function. Nerve damage can be alleviated by surgery, but in some cases, patients will still lose some of their ability to control their fingers and grasp. Expensive physical therapy may be necessary to strengthen the hands and teach patients how to use their hands again.
These are just some of the risks that victims face when a dog snaps at a hand:
- Broken Fingers
- Broken Hand Bones in Palm (the metacarpals)
- Puncture Wounds
- Nerve Damage
- Ligament Damage
- Tendon Damage
- Blood Vessel Damage
- Blood Loss
The injuries for dog bite victims may take weeks to heal. But in some tragic cases, victims may never be able to restore the utility of their hands to the way they were before the accident. A permanent disability may result. This would leave dog bite victims in need of lifetime support to pay for future medical care and equipment. They may need help finding new careers when they find they can no longer do their previous job duties.
A Louisville dog bite attorney must strive to get all of these hardships covered in a settlement and not leave any medical costs for victims to pay out of their own pockets.
Compensation Available for Hand Injury Victims After a Dog Bite
Your dog bite lawyer will make sure every hardship you’ve endured during recovery from a hand injury is included in an injury claim. This claim will likely be directed at the dog owner’s homeowners insurance or renter’s insurance provider.
Insurance adjusters will attempt to cast doubt or devalue everything listed in your claim. But your lawyer will have every factor backed with evidence that will make it hard for an insurer to get away with rejecting your claim.
These and other factors should all help determine the size of your dog bite settlement check:
- Past and future medical care
- Money to pay for physical therapy
- Support for permanent physical disability
- Support for permanent disfigurement on hands
- Travel costs for medical appointments
- Support for the pain victims suffer
- Support for emotional trauma
- Replacement of lost income
- Support for any personal property damage
Contact a Louisville Dog Bite Lawyer
Dog bite victims in Kentucky have only one year to file an injury claim. It’s best to act as quickly as possible to make sure you receive help with your recovery costs before you hit serious financial issues.
Contact Kaufman & Stigger, PLLC for an absolutely free consultation on your case. It’s a no-stress way to determine who you should hold responsible for your hand wounds and how much in compensation you should demand. If you decide our Louisville attorneys can help you get the most out of your dog bite accident claim, you won’t need any money now. We don’t get paid unless we win your case for you. Then our fee comes out of the settlement you and your family are awarded.