Dog Bite Statistics for Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania ranks in the top ten most ever year for dog bite incidents. MoneyWise ranked the state 6th worst in the nation based on the 780 dog bite insurance claims reported in 2019. These cases added up to an average compensation of $35,000 paid to each victim. That means a combined $27.6 million in insurance money.
Dogsbite.org found that each day an average of 1,000 Americans require emergency care treatment for serious dog bite injuries. Annually, about 14,025 Americans are hospitalized due to dog bite injuries.
Children and Dog Bites
Children are at the greatest risk from dog bites. They can’t read the emotions of a dog as well as an adult and may not realize they are in danger. A bite that an adult can recover from may prove fatal to a smaller person.
Kids-n-k9s.com compiled the scary data on dog attacks on children. They found that around half of all dog bite victims are children. They also report that most dog bites involving children are seen between the ages of five to nine. Another troubling fact, most dog attacks happened to children during everyday activities with a dog they were familiar with.
Edith Pearce of The Pearce Law Firm works with child victims and their parents. These delicate cases require special care. The goal in a dog bite lawsuit is to ensure the child gets the best medical attention and that that care is completely paid for. The child’s future physical and emotional health must also be provided for. A child living in fear after an incident for the rest of his or her life is an unacceptable outcome. The cost of psychological counseling and emotional recovery should be included in any settlement or award.
Pennsylvania Laws Regarding Dog Bites
Responsible dog owners make sure their pets are restrained properly on walks and are secure at home and in their yards. It’s also the law to provide these securities when you own a dog. It’s your responsibility.
Pennsylvania has “strict liability” statutes to cover dog bites. This means that a dog owner can be responsible for an injury even if the pet hasn’t shown aggression in the past. Be aware, this statute only requires the owner pay for the medical costs resulting from a dog attack. Emotional anguish and compensation for other hardships aren’t included.
A dog owner may be forced to pay for more than just medical bills if it can be proved that they were negligent in the care of their dog. A victim would have to prove the animal was known to be a danger to humans and even with this knowledge the owner failed to restrain the dog properly.
Frequently Asked Questions
Will the dog that bit me be euthanized?
In most cases, no. However, Pennsylvania law does allow the local authorities to take control of a dog to make sure it’s not a danger to others. If it has no history of aggression or violence, then it will be returned to the owner. In some rare cases, if the dog is determined to be a danger to the public, the law allows it to be put down.
Who pays for a dog bite injury?
Generally, the owner of the dog bears responsibility for any damages done by a dog attack. In some cases, the dog might have been under the control of a dog walker or someone other than the owner, and this person might also bear some responsibility. Their insurance policies will usually cover the damages.
Do I need an attorney for a dog bite injury?
Most people have homeowner’s or renter’s insurance that will pay for dog bite injuries. However, insurance companies depend on expensive top-tiered attorneys to defend their clients. They may try to prove you were to blame for your bite. They want to pay you as little as possible for your pain and suffering. It’s best to have an attorney on your side who knows state law and has been successful in handling dog bite cases.
Local Help in a Philadelphia Dog Bite Case
Edith A. Pearce Esq. is a Philadelphia dog bite lawyer with proven results. She is an exceptionally intelligent lawyer and is a member of MENSA, the high IQ society. Edith Pearce is not afraid to take on the largest insurance companies and handle the most complex personal injury cases in Philadelphia. Philadelphia dog bite lawyer Edith Pearce is personally involved in every case the firm handles from start to finish. She genuinely cares about her clients and you will not be treated like just another case or file. Click here to download our Complete Guide to Dog Bites.
Contact a Philadelphia Dog Bite Lawyer
Philadelphia grants a dog bite victim up to two years after the attack to file a claim for damages against a dog owner. Edith Pearce does not recommend waiting this long to file a claim. Evidence, like a gap in a fence or a broken chain, can be repaired. The sooner you file your claim, the easier it will be to document evidence and locate witnesses you’ll need to build your legal argument against the dog’s owner. An attorney on your side can help you collect these details to build a strong case.
After a traumatic dog attack, contact a highly rated Philadelphia Dog Bite Lawyer to protect you as you recover. You are not to blame for your injuries and you shouldn’t have to worry about how to pay for hospital bills as you heal and try to return to a normal life. Let your attorney make sure your future is completely covered.