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7 Steps for Dog Bite Victims in Florida To Get Compensation

Getting Compensation in Florida for a Dog Bite 

Being bitten by a dog can be a traumatic and painful experience. But when it happens on someone else’s property, like a business, it raises questions around liability and compensation. As a dog bite lawyer in Florida will tell you, businesses have certain responsibilities when it comes to protecting people from dog bites on their premises. Understanding your rights in these situations is important.

The Soffer Firm has been voted Super Lawyers “Rising Star” and “National Trial Lawyers – Top 40 Under 40” multiple years in a row because of how hard we work for our clients. We don’t get paid unless you get paid, and we have recovered millions for our clients. 

Our Florida personal injury lawyers help you navigate the complexities of your legal case. Call us today at (786) 788-7344

What To Do If Bitten By A Dog on a Commercial Property 

If you are bitten by a dog in Florida at a business, whether it is a customer or employee’s dog, or even a security dog, here are some steps to take:

  • Seek medical attention immediately. Dog bites can cause bacterial infections and other issues if not properly treated. Get the wound cleaned and evaluated by a doctor.

  • Report the bite. Report the bite to any security on the business premise. Get the name and contact details of any witnesses.

  • Identify the dog owner. If it is a customer or vendor’s dog, get their contact details. Your employer should obtain this information if they do not already have it.

  • Document everything related to the incident. Take photos of your injuries and write down as many details as you can remember while it is still fresh.

  • Consult a dog bite lawyer. An attorney can advise you on your legal options regarding compensation from the business.

  • File a personal injury claim. Consult a personal injury attorney to see if you can file a personal injury claim in Florida 

Taking these steps can help protect your rights and access to compensation after being bitten by a dog at work. Having an experienced dog bite lawyer on your side is key.

Is The Business Liable for A Dog Bite on Their Property?

Whether a Florida business is liable for a dog bite that occurs on their property depends on the specific circumstances. According to Florida dog bite law, the dog owner is responsible. However, businesses also have a duty to keep their premises safe. Relevant factors can include:

  • Was the dog known to be dangerous or aggressive? If so, extra steps may have been needed to prevent bites.

  • What safety measures did the business have in place regarding dogs? Were there signs posted or areas prohibited?

  • Was the victim an employee, customer, or other visitor? The type of visitor can impact liability.

  • Did poor lighting, lack of restraint, or other conditions contribute? Unsafe settings may increase liability.

  • Was the victim teasing or provoking the dog beforehand? This may reduce the business’ liability if proven.

Dog bite lawyers look closely at every aspect of the incident to determine where negligence occurred. While the dog owner is responsible for controlling their pet, businesses must provide reasonable safeguards against known hazards, including aggressive dogs on their property.

Compensation Available After A Dog Bite 

If you’re bitten by a dog while working,  compensation you may be entitled to can include:

  • Medical expenses – Any bills related to injury treatment, both initial and ongoing if needed. This includes hospital stays, medications, therapy etc.

  • Lost income – Salary lost due to missing work during recovery.

  • Disability benefits – If permanently disabled and unable to work the same job.

  • Pain and suffering – Financial compensation for trauma and diminished quality of life after the bite.

  • Punitive damages – Extra monetary damages meant to punish negligent behavior.

The precise value of a dog bite claim depends on many unique factors like bite severity, infections sustained, and treatment required. An experienced dog bite lawyer will fight to secure full and fair compensation under the law. They will deal with insurance companies and aggressive legal opposition.

Finding The Right Dog Bite Lawyer in Florida

If you are bitten by a dog in a business location in Florida, partnering with the right lawyer is crucial. Look for:

  • Extensive specific experience handling Florida dog bite cases.

  • A strong record of securing sizable compensation for clients.

  • A reputation for aggressive and effective negotiation and litigation skills.

  • A lawyer that makes you feel comfortable and treats you with respect.

  • Someone who fully explains the process and sets realistic expectations.

  • Affordable fee options, like contingency fees.

Take time to research and ask candidates about their background. Read online reviews from past clients. Meet them in person if possible. Having an excellent dog bite lawyer in your corner can make all the difference in getting the maximum compensation you deserve.

Steps In A Dog Bite Injury Claim Process

Pursuing compensation after being bitten by a dog involves certain key steps, like:

  • Thorough investigation of the incident, including inspecting the scene, interviewing witnesses, and reviewing pertinent records.

  • Identifying all responsible parties – the dog owner, business owners, insurance companies etc.

  • Calculating all costs related to medical treatment, lost wages, and other damages.

  • Sending official notification letters to put the proper businesses and insurance companies on notice.

  • Attempting to negotiate an acceptable settlement.

  • Filing a lawsuit if needed to compel reasonable compensation.

  • Awaiting the outcome of court proceedings or a settlement.

This process can take anywhere from a few months to a year or longer depending on complexity. An attorney will handle all aspects of the case so you can focus on recovery.

Key Takeaways

  • Seek medical care immediately if bitten by a dog at work. Report it to your employer.

  • Businesses must take reasonable precautions against dog bites on their property. Their liability depends on the details.

  • You may claim compensation for medical bills, lost income, disability benefits, pain and suffering, and punitive damages.

  • Work with an experienced Florida dog bite lawyer to build the strongest case and get the maximum compensation.

  • Be prepared for a lengthy process involving investigation, negotiation, and possibly litigation.

Don’t hesitate to consult a dog bite attorney in Florida after suffering a dog bite injury on business premises. They will protect your rights every step of the way. With the proper legal support, you can recover both physically and financially.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Can I sue if a customer’s dog bites me at work?

Yes, you may be able to sue the dog owner and possibly your employer if they failed to take reasonable precautions to protect you from a foreseeable dog bite hazard on their premises.

2. What if my coworker’s dog bites me at the office?

Report it to your employer and consult a lawyer. Your coworker owns the dog so they are liable, but your employer may share liability for allowing a hazardous dog in the workplace.

3. Do I have to prove the business knew the dog was dangerous?

Not necessarily. You must show they failed to take reasonable care, which could involve not banning dogs, failing to restrain/fence dogs on premises, lack of signage etc.

4. Can workers compensation cover a dog bite?

Yes, job-related injuries like dog bites are generally covered by workers comp, which pays medical and disability benefits. But you may also sue third parties like the dog owner for additional damages.

5. What if I partly provoked the dog that bit me?

Any provocation would reduce liability, but businesses still must keep their premises reasonably safe. An experienced lawyer will fight for maximum compensation regardless of circumstances.

Choosing a Personal Injury Attorney in Florida 

Being bitten by a dog is a difficult experience. It is important to choose an attorney who will advocate for you and your unique needs. 

The Soffer Firm has been voted Super Lawyers “Rising Star” and “National Trial Lawyers – Top 40 Under 40” multiple years in a row because of how hard we work for our clients. We don’t get paid unless you get paid, and we have recovered millions for our clients. 

Our Florida personal injury lawyers help you navigate the complexities of your legal case. Call us today at (786) 788-7344