Dog bites can cause serious injuries and emotional trauma for victims. In Idaho, if you have been bitten by a dog, you may be able to file a lawsuit against the dog’s owner. However, it’s important to understand what to expect during a dog bite lawsuit in Idaho. Here are some key points to keep in mind.
Idaho is a “One Bite” State
In Idaho, dogs are considered property, and their owners are liable for any damages caused by their pets. However, Idaho is a “one bite” state, which means that the dog owner is only liable if they knew or should have known that their dog had a propensity to bite. In other words, if the dog had never bitten anyone before, the owner may not be held liable for the first bite.
Statute of Limitations
In Idaho, the statute of limitations for filing a dog bite lawsuit is two years from the date of the incident. If you wait too long to file your lawsuit, you may lose your right to seek compensation for your injuries.
Idaho follows the doctrine of comparative negligence, which means that if the victim is found to have contributed to the dog bite incident in any way, their compensation may be reduced by their percentage of fault. For example, if the victim was teasing the dog before the attack, their compensation may be reduced.
If you are successful in your dog bite lawsuit, you may be able to recover compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages related to the incident.
In some cases, the dog owner’s homeowner’s insurance policy may cover the damages caused by the dog bite. If the owner is uninsured or underinsured, it may be difficult to recover compensation.
Settlement vs. Trial
Many dog bite lawsuits are settled out of court, but if a settlement cannot be reached, the case may go to trial. A trial can be a lengthy and expensive process, and the outcome is never guaranteed.
Hiring an Attorney
If you have been bitten by a dog, it’s important to consult with an experienced personal injury attorney who can guide you through the legal process and help you recover the compensation you deserve. An attorney can investigate the incident, gather evidence, negotiate with insurance companies, and represent you in court if necessary.
Document the Incident
After a dog bite incident, it’s important to document the details of what happened. This includes taking photos of your injuries, getting contact information from any witnesses, and keeping a record of all medical treatment you receive. This information can be useful in building a strong case and proving your damages in court.
Be Careful of What You Say
It’s important to be cautious about what you say after a dog bite incident. Avoid making any statements that could be used against you in court. This includes apologizing for anything you may have done to provoke the dog or admitting fault in any way. It’s best to speak with an attorney before making any statements to the dog owner or their insurance company.
Seek Medical Attention
Even if your injuries seem minor, it’s important to seek medical attention after a dog bite. Dog bites can cause serious infections and other complications, and it’s important to get proper treatment to prevent any further health issues. Seeking medical attention also creates a record of your injuries that can be used in your lawsuit.
A dog bite lawsuit in Idaho can be a complex legal process, but with the help of an experienced personal injury attorney, you can seek the compensation you deserve for your injuries and damages. Remember to document the incident, seek medical attention, and be cautious about what you say. By following these tips and working with an attorney, you can increase your chances of a successful outcome in your case.
Hepworth Holzer, LLP is a personal injury law firm located in Boise, Idaho, with extensive experience handling dog bite cases. Here’s how we can help with your dog bite lawsuit:
We can provide legal representation and guidance throughout the entire legal process. Our attorneys can investigate the incident, gather evidence, negotiate with insurance companies, and represent you in court if necessary. We can help you understand your legal rights and options, and work to ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve for your injuries and damages.
Maximizing Your Compensation
Our attorneys have extensive experience handling personal injury cases, including dog bite lawsuits. We know how to build a strong case and can help maximize your compensation by including all the damages you are entitled to, such as medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and future medical expenses.
Dealing with Insurance Companies
Dog owners may have homeowner’s insurance policies that cover dog bites. Our attorneys can communicate with the insurance company on your behalf and work to negotiate a fair settlement. We can also help you understand your insurance policy and what benefits you may be entitled to.
Providing Legal Advice
Our attorneys can provide you with legal advice and answer any questions you may have about the legal process. We can help you understand the statute of limitations, comparative negligence, and other legal issues related to your case.
Fighting for Your Rights
At Hepworth Holzer, LLP, we are committed to fighting for the rights of our clients. We have a reputation for being aggressive advocates for our clients and will work tirelessly to ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve.
If you have been bitten by a dog in Idaho, Hepworth Holzer, LLP can provide the legal representation and guidance you need to navigate the legal process. Contact us today for a free consultation to discuss your case and how we can help you seek the compensation you deserve.