Dog bite injuries are dangerous and traumatic. A dog bite can cause long-term or permanent physical and emotional injuries. In some situations, a Virginia dog owner is legally responsible for compensating a victim of dog bite injuries. Our dog bite lawyers at Renfro & Renfro help you receive the full financial recovery that you deserve in a dog bite case. From our Richmond office, we serve clients throughout the metro area and Commonwealth of Virginia.
Our lawyers and staff work as a team to provide all the guidance and support you need. We build a close working relationship with each client. We shoulder the burden of doing all the work necessary to get your compensation, which allows you to concentrate on your recovery. Our highly responsive approach puts you at ease and gives you confidence that your legal interests are fully protected. Our results-driven litigation strategy ensures diligent and vigorous representation at every stage of the process.
Unlike some states, Virginia does not have specific statutes relating to the legal liability of a dog owner for injuries caused by the dog. State court decisions establish the rules for liability under the common law principles that apply in personal injury cases.
If the dog owner’s negligence resulted in the dog bite or attack, the owner may be responsible for compensating the injured victim. Negligence can be shown in different ways, including that the owner knew or should have known that the dog was dangerous and had an inclination to attack people. A lack of care that constitutes negligence can be demonstrated in other ways as well.
Dog owners must properly control and contain their dogs. Failure to do so can subject the owner to legal liability for injuries the dog causes. If the owner violates local rules about leashing or confining pets, those violations help to prove the owner’s legal responsibility for damages.
Virginia court decisions recognize a rule called the One Bite Rule. That principle generally means that if the dog has not ever bitten a person, the owner has no reason to know of the dog’s inclination to bite or attack and thus is not responsible for bite injuries. It also means that after a dog’s first bite, the owner knows of the dog’s tendencies and is more likely to be found negligent and legally responsible for injuries. However, the One Bite Rule is not absolute. Even if a dog has not bitten anyone previously, negligence can sometimes be proven in other ways.
Dog bite cases often are complex both factually and legally. Proving liability in a dog bite case requires experience and knowledge of Virginia dog bite law. Our dog bite attorneys at Renfro & Renfro have the necessary skill to pursue full compensation when a dog bite causes serious compensable harm to the victim.
If a dog bites you or a member of your family, the top priority is getting proper medical treatment. Animal bites are more dangerous than just the scrapes, cuts, and puncture wounds that occur. Dog bites and scratches spread germs that can cause infection. After getting medical treatment, you should report the bite to your local animal control agency or police department.
You should also contact animal control when the bite occurs. Animal control will investigate the dog bite and should create a report documenting the bite and the dog’s vaccination history. If possible, you should get the owner’s name and contact information and the dog’s rabies vaccination information. But do not discuss details of the attack or bite with the dog’s owner. Also do not talk with the owner’s insurance company if an adjuster contacts you. Talking with the dog owner or insurance company can hurt your claim for financial compensation.
If the dog bite causes more than superficial injuries, you should talk with an experienced dog bite lawyer. You may be entitled to personal injury compensation, including payment of medical expenses, money for pain and suffering, and financial reimbursement for long-term or permanent effects or disabilities.
Our Richmond dog bite lawyers at Renfro & Renfro understand the complicated nature of dog bite injuries, Virginia dog bite law, and the rules on liability of dog owners for injuries caused by their dogs. We investigate your case, gather evidence, and fully analyze your claim. If you are entitled to compensation, we vigorously pursue the full amount you deserve.
If you suffered injuries from a dog bite, you may be entitled to compensation under Virginia dog bite law. Our experienced Richmond injury attorneys at Renfro & Renfro provide a free consultation and case evaluation for accident victims.
We serve clients in the Greater Richmond Region, including in Petersburg and Dinwiddie, and throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia. We welcome you to schedule a consultation by using our online form.