How We Can Help You Recover Faster with Maximum Compensation
We are passionate and committed to your case. Our dog bite injury attorney does more than fill out forms. We research and investigate your case to understand all the potential avenues for holding wrongdoers accountable. This gives you the strongest chance of receiving maximum compensation.
In a recent case, we won a $150,000 jury award because we would not settle for less than what our client was owed. This win, however, is not an exception but the norm for us. Each case is unique, so the outcome of each settlement or jury award will be different.
In Massachusetts, dog owners are strictly liable for their dog’s actions, even when the dog has never shown any prior aggressive behavior. We will work diligently to secure the outcome that matches your injuries so that every penny of your bills is covered.
Understanding Dog Bite Claims in Springfield, Massachusetts
Dogs are a wonderful addition to our families. They are excellent companions, fun to watch, and bring joy to our lives. However, they are animals with instincts that cannot always be predicted or controlled. Even though a dog may never have bared its teeth at anyone, it could be one day. Knowing what might set a dog off can baffle even its owners.
If you can satisfy all the following elements, then you have a personal injury claim for an injury caused by a dog:
- The dog attacked.
- You or someone you love was injured.
- You sustained wounds and/or scarring.
- You sought medical attention.
- The dog owner, and sometimes a landlord or landowner, is responsible for the dog’s actions and, thus, liable for the full costs of your injuries.
In Massachusetts, thousands of dog bite injury claims are filed each year. According to the Insurance Information Institute, nearly $1,136 million in compensation for dog-related injuries nationwide was settled through the claims process or awarded through the court system in 2020.
At Cava Law Firm, we are dog owners and know how precious they are. We have also seen how devastating a dog attack can be. You deserve maximum compensation, and we use our skilled team of dog bites lawyers to obtain that for you.
How Are Dog Bite Claims Paid?
If you have been injured in a dog attack, do not assume the dog owner’s insurance policy will settle for a fair and just payout. They often offer a fraction of what they should and will work hard to reduce or deny your claim.
Homeowner’s and renter’s insurance policies typically cover only the costs of injuries caused by the policyholder’s dog. They rarely pay for pain and suffering. Insurance companies are for-profit entities. They want to maximize their profits while minimizing all payouts.
They have adjusters and attorneys who use intimidation and manipulation, making it hard to get what you are rightfully owed. A Springfield dog bite attorney from Cava Law Firm knows how to counter their tactics and will push back to get the settlement you need.
Why Choose a Springfield Dog Bite Lawyer from Cava Law
Dog bite cases are not won just because you file a claim. You win a dog bite case when you get adequate compensation for your injury. You may simply think you need payment for your doctor bills, but there are many expenses clients overlook. These intricate details often matter and can help you recover the full worth of your claim.
As mentioned, insurance companies try to deny or reduce claims. Our process at Cava Law Firm to win your case is three-fold.
1. Informing and Communicating with Our Clients
The first step is always discussing your case with you and making sure you understand what is at stake. The better informed you are, the better decisions you will make. Part of this process is understanding the Massachusetts Dog Bite Statute, MGL Chapter 140 § 155.
Dog bites are not the only compensable injury. Many people assume they do not have a case because they were not actually bitten. However, the law covers incidents where a dog causes injury without biting you. If the dog shoves or pushes you and you are hurt in a fall, the owner is liable for all your expenses. If you suffer broken bones, a concussion, or cuts, they must pay for everything.
2. Investigating and Developing a Solid Dog Bite Case
Second, we conduct a thorough investigation and analyze the results of that investigation. Along with statements from witnesses present that day and expert testimony, we also collect medical records and other documentation to build a compelling case. We create a compelling narrative that lets insurance adjusters know their policyholder is liable, and we will not back down.
If your case proceeds to court, we use that same evidence to convince a judge and jury that you deserve all your expenses paid, both economic (medical bills) and non-economic (pain and suffering).
3. Developing an Offense While Countering Potential Defenses
Third, we know that insurance companies, whether during settlement talks or preparing for trial, will use all defenses possible. We are proactive and counter these potential defenses before the allegations are made.
According to the Massachusetts Dog Bite Statute, there are three defenses that could prevent you from recovering compensation:
- Trespassing: If you were on the property without authorization and not for the defendant’s benefit, you were trespassing. The property or business owner typically does not owe you a duty of care except in limited situations.
- Provocation: If you provoked the dog by teasing, tormenting, or abusing it, then the owner may not be liable or only partly liable for the injury.
- Tort commission: If you were committing another wrong (tort) when a dog injured you, you may not be able to recover damages. For example, you assaulted the owner, and then the dog bit you.
Whatever you say can be used against you. You should never speak to the other party’s insurance company without first consulting an attorney.
Rely on the dog bite lawyers at Cava Law Firm to communicate on your behalf. We will be firm, persistent, and committed to obtaining full and fair compensation.
Trust a Cava Law Springfield Dog Bite Lawyer for Your Case
Winning is no accident! It happens when a dog bite attorney is experienced, dedicated, and tenacious. No matter what breed bit you, you need an aggressive lawyer on your case to fight the insurance companies and defendants who want to avoid consequences. At Cava Law, your Springfield dog bite injury lawyer will fight hard for what you need.
If you or a loved one suffered an injury from a dog, we are here to help through the process. Below, you can find quick responses to some of the most asked questions we get on a regular basis about dog injuries in Springfield, Massachusetts.
For more personalized answers to questions specifically about your dog bite injury, contact us online or call us at (413) 737-3430 or (413) 781-CAVA (2282) to schedule a free initial consultation.
FAQs about Dog Bite Injury
I was injured by a dog in Springfield, Massachusetts. What should I do?
After a dog bite or dog attack, safety is the priority. Depending on the specific circumstances of the incident, you should:
- Contact 911 immediately for medical assistance and for Animal Services to investigate the dog and/or dog owner. Otherwise, seek other medical attention and document the incident.
- Gather contact information of any potential eyewitnesses.
- Obtain the dog owner’s contact information, including homeowner’s insurance or renter’s insurance.
- Photograph the scene and the wound. Take pictures of whether any “Beware of Dog” signs are posted or not.
- Contact Cava Law Firm so we can begin to review your case, answer your specific questions, and advise you on your best options.
What if it was my neighbor’s dog that bit me?
Unfortunately, most victims of dog-related injuries are family members, friends, and neighbors. We know that it can be a sensitive matter. Fortunately, though, it is almost always the insurance company that pays out for the damages you suffer.
The problem occurs when an insurance policy specifically excludes dog injuries. This sometimes happens with specific breeds. We will discuss the issue with you and take all measures to be as sensitive as possible while ensuring you receive the compensation you deserve.
Why do dogs bite or attack people?
Dogs attack for many reasons, including but not limited to:
- A reaction to a stressful situation (dogs that are tied up a lot tend to be more aggressive);
- Feeling threatened or fearful;
- Past abusive situations;
- Wanting to protect puppies or their guardians/owners.
Not all dog-related injuries stem from a dog attack. A dog may be excited and jump on someone, causing them to fall and injure themselves. In this scenario, if the victim suffers any monetarily quantifiable damages, they have a legal right to compensation.
Who gets hurt the most from a dog bite injury in Massachusetts?
According to data for Emergency Department visits in Massachusetts, children aged 0 to 14 and boys rather than girls are most likely to be victims of dog bites.
What compensation can I get for a dog attack in Springfield?
In Massachusetts, for a dog bite injury claim, you can seek compensatory damages. Compensatory damages refer to special (sometimes called economic) and general damages (sometimes called non-economic.)
Special damages include:
- Property replacement or repairs;
- Medical expenses (past and future);
- Lost wages;
- Loss of earning capacity; and /or
- Household expenses.
General damages include:
- Pain and suffering;
- Disability or impairment;
- Mental anguish;
- Reduced quality of life; and/or
- Loss of companionship (in wrongful death cases.)
Massachusetts does not award punitive damages in personal injury cases. Your dog bite attorney can explain and help you estimate the full range of damages you may be able to claim for your case.
How long do I have in Massachusetts to file a dog bite injury claim?
In Massachusetts, per Mass. Gen. Laws Ch. 260 § 2A, you have three years from the date the dog injured you or a loved one to file a claim. You would think three years is a long time, but it passes very quickly when you are trying to recover from a traumatic injury and experience.
Additional tasks such as securing evidence, interviewing witnesses, and developing your case take time. Contact us today so we can get started working right away at (413) 737-3430 or (413) 781-CAVA (2282).