Are You Or A Loved One The Victim Of A Dog Bite Or Animal Attack?

At Robert A. Solomon, P.C., we understand how different the law in New York is from that
in New Jersey when it comes to dog bite cases. From our office in Newark and two locations in New York, our attorneys can use their knowledge and experience to represent you in your case and achieve results.

  • In New York, a dog bite victim must establish that the dog had vicious propensities and that the owner knew or should have known of the dog's vicious propensities. This often results in the owner getting one free bite.
  • In New Jersey, the owner of any dog which bites a person is liable for the damages suffered by the person bitten, regardless of the former viciousness of the dog or the owner's knowledge of such viciousness.

Contact us online or call 800-469-6476 today to schedule your free initial consultation with our lawyers.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Michigan Association of Insurance Agents
and the U.S. Postal Service compiled a startling array of statistics about dog attacks. Here are
some of the results:

  • There are approximately 4.7 million dog bites per year nationwide.
  • The number of dog bites requiring medical attention has increased 15 times faster than the increase in dog ownership.
  • There are more than 850,000 dog bites requiring medical attention in the U.S. yearly.
  • In a twelve-month period from 1995 to 1996, at least 25 people in the U.S. have died from dog attacks, 20 of whom were children.
  • Letter carriers suffer about 3,000 bites annually as they deliver the mail.

These alarming conclusions show that this is a problem that is getting worse, not better. Victims of dog bite attacks can sustain painful and life-altering injuries, including deep skin wounds, loss of fingers, infections and scarring. Dogs that are prone to attack are a liability and the owners need to be held responsible for them.

Children Are Often Victims

Children are most often the victims of serious dog attacks for several reasons. They are
boisterous, loud and make unpredictable movements that can scare dogs. What a child might
see as an expression of love — a simple hug — can be an explicit threat to the animal.

The Most Vicious Breeds

In the period from 1979 to 1996, there were 154 reported fatal dog attacks. Five breeds
accounted for two-thirds of those attacks. Those breeds, in order of the most fatalities, are: Pit Bull, Rottweiler, German Shepherd, Husky, Alaskan Malamute. Pit Bulls were responsible for
twice as many fatal attacks as any other breed and over half of all fatal attacks. We have handled more cases involving Rottweilers than any other breed.

Take Action Quickly After A Bite

The most important aspect of prosecuting a dog attack case is to secure evidence as quickly as possible. We have our investigator on the scene, usually within an hour of notification, in order to gather and preserve evidence. The best evidence that we seek to obtain immediately is to identity of the dog and its owner, photographs of the dog, identity of witnesses, witness
statements, and photographs of the injuries and location of the attack.

It's no surprise that many people get dogs as their "security systems," hoping to prevent losses. Yet many dogs do just the opposite — costing owners and insurance companies megabucks in medical bills and attorney fees.

Dogs sometimes fail to differentiate intruders from family members, friends, neighbors and mail
carriers, causing severe injuries or in some cases death. Each year, dogs bite about 4.7 million people in the United States. On average, 800,000 require medical attention; more than half are children. About a dozen of those injuries are usually fatal, according to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Besides causing pain, dog bites cost money. One-third of all homeowner's claims in 1999 were
dog related, says the Western Insurance Information Service, a nonprofit industry group.
Insurers shelled out more than $1 billion. And that's not even calculating the amount of money spent by those who don't have insurance.

Knowing The Law

Dog owners need to know not only state law but city or county ordinances as well. The dog owner isn't always held liable, however, if it can be proven that the victim was either
trespassing or provoking the dog.

It's a good idea not to let your dog run loose in the neighborhood. Posting a "beware of dog" sign on your property and keeping your dog away from your front door will also make it less likely that visitors will be unpleasantly surprised.