Few personal injuries are more traumatic and legally complex than dog bites. Even when the victim survives, life can be drastically different, with permanent scarring, loss of a limb or eye, or long-term psychological harm. Victims also face medical bills, lost wages, surgery costs, physical pain, and mental anguish.
If you, your child, or another family member has suffered a dog bite, the owner should be held responsible for your damages. I’m Ed Atkinson, a Norfolk dog bite lawyer with a track record of success in these cases, winning hundreds of thousands of dollars for my clients.
Contact my office today for a free, no-obligation consultation.
Financial Compensation After a Norfolk Dog Attack
In Virginia, negligent dog owners can be held liable for injuries caused by their pets. As a result, victims of dog bites may be entitled to compensation for economic and non-economic damages.
Recoverable damages may include the following:
- Medical expenses, such as hospital bills and rehabilitation costs
- Loss of earnings due to time away from work while recovering
- Pain and suffering caused by the physical and emotional trauma of the dog bite
- Scarring and disfigurement resulting from the bite
- Property damage, such as torn clothing or broken glasses
Please keep in mind that all dog bite injury cases are different. Claim results and settlement values depend on several factors, including the injuries’ severity, location, and the cost of the victim’s medical bills.
For a free legal consultation with a dog bite lawyer serving Norfolk, call 757-648-8579
Dog Bite Claims Are Different from Car Accidents and Other Personal Injury Claims
Like car accident claims, dog bite injuries in Virginia arise out of the legal principle of negligence or failure to use “ordinary care.” However, obtaining a settlement from an auto insurance policy and holding a dog owner responsible for an attack differ considerably.
A victim of the latter must prove that the dog owner or handler knew or should have known the dog could injure someone or that the owner or handler was violating a leash law or other safety standard.
Norfolk Dog Bite Lawyer Near Me 757-648-8579
Why ‘One Free Bite’ or the ‘One Bite Rule’ is Misleading
Many people who should know better, even personal injury attorneys and homeowners insurance adjusters, believe that Virginia dog bite injury law allows every animal one free bite.
Fortunately, while a prior bite is the best evidence of an owner’s knowledge of a dog’s tendencies, it’s not the only way to prove negligence. I have settled many cases without evidence of a prior bite incident, including a $300,000 settlement in a 2020 pit bull attack in Chesapeake that caused the loss of one eye.
I Am Skilled at Proving Dog Owner Negligence
At Atkinson Law, I apply my knowledge of dogs and dog breeds to build effective personal injury cases. I am adept at proving dog owner negligence and uncovering problems with the dog’s training and past behaviors.
This has been particularly true in “rehabilitated” pit bull cases, including a 2018 case I settled in Chesapeake for $47,000. However, such results take skill and experience.
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Personal Experience With Dog Breeds Known for Showing Aggression
I am a passionate Norfolk dog bite injury lawyer because I own, breed, train, and compete with my own personal protection dogs (Belgian Shepherd Malinois, the preferred breed for military and law enforcement work).
With knowledge, patience, and care, the canine-human bond can be sublime, balancing unparalleled loyalty with incredible power. However, owning a dog means you are responsible for knowing the breed’s capabilities and the temperament of your individual dog.
Not All “Tough” Dogs Have a Vicious Nature
Certainly, not all pit bulls are vicious, and not all “tough” dogs (Rottweilers, German Shepherds, Cane Corsos, Presa Canarios, Dutch Shepherds, and Doberman Pinschers, for example) will defend their owner by biting.
And conversely, of course, small breeds can also bite and cause physical injuries, especially to small children. If you or a loved one has been bitten, please realize that no personal injury lawyer will understand the underlying dog behavior to the extent that I will.
My reputation, personal experience, knowledge of dog psychology, and passion for justice make me a powerful ally for your dog bite injury claim.
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Contact Me for Representation in Any Dog Attack Case, Including a Fatal One
Unfortunately, fatal dog attacks can and do occur. In these cases, the emotional and financial toll on the victim’s family can be devastating. That’s why working with an attorney who understands the unique complexities of fatal dog bite cases is vital.
At Atkinson Law, I provide compassionate and experienced legal representation for families who have lost a loved one due to a dog attack. I understand this is a difficult and emotional time, and I will work tirelessly to get justice and closure for your loved one.
If you’ve lost a family member due to a dog bite or attack, please get in touch with me for a free consultation. I can help you understand your options and provide legal advice regarding your next steps. Let’s work together to hold the negligent dog owner responsible.
Time Limit for Filing a Personal Injury or Wrongful Death Lawsuit
The Virginia Statute of Limitations places a strict two-year limit on filing a personal injury claim or wrongful death lawsuit. Although two years may seem like plenty of time, building a solid case can take a while.
It is also important to note that special circumstances can alter the two-year deadline. If you are uncertain whether your case falls within the allowable time frame, call me, and I can determine that for you.
I Can Help You Take Action Before the Deadline
While time is of the essence when it comes to filing a civil claim, I can navigate any exceptions or extenuating circumstances that may exempt your case from the normal limitation period.
Contacting me as early as possible will protect your right to recover monetary damages. I offer free consultations and will help you understand your legal rights. In addition, I handle cases on a contingency-fee basis, meaning I only get paid when I get you a settlement or court award.
Contact Me, Your Norfolk Dog Attack Lawyer
If you or a loved one has been bitten by a dog in Norfolk, VA, it is important to seek help from an experienced Norfolk dog bite attorney. Insurance companies can be deceptive and exploit dog bite victims, so having a skilled lawyer is essential.
I understand insurance companies’ deceptive tactics and have extensive knowledge of dog bite law. Contact me today to schedule a free consultation and learn about your options. Atkinson Law serves all of Virginia with aggressive dog bite victim representation.
Call my Norfolk, VA office, or fill out the online contact form for a free consultation.