It seems like it is impossible to find the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. At least that is how a timeless story goes. When it comes to cashing in on a large dog bite settlement, in most cases, the pot of gold is not even visible.
Cashing in a large dog bite settlement claim requires a lot of hard work done by a California personal injury attorney who specializes in negotiating favorable settlements. How an attorney can get you a large dog bite settlement hinges on following a few time-tested steps that make sliding down the rainbow a relatively smooth process.
It Starts with Photographs
Physical evidence plays a huge role in determining the outcomes of most criminal cases. Although a dog bite incident typically does not involve criminal intent, it does require the same dedication to gathering and organizing physical evidence for a plaintiff to receive just compensation for one or more injuries.
For a dog bite case, physical evidence starts with photographs that display the number and extent of the injuries suffered by a plaintiff.
Underneath the bandages lie compelling evidence that a dog bite took place. Taking photographs of one or more dog bites provides insurance companies with the first sign that something bad or even illegal took place. An attorney who presents blown-up images of one or more dog bites sets the stage for the medical evidence that follows in proving a client was a victim of a dog bite attack.
Here Comes the Medical Evidence
It does not need to be a part of a personal injury lawyer’s playbook to collect and organize every medical record that is relevant to a dog bite case. It should be a given. However, your attorney should be aware of the latest diagnostic tests and treatment programs that help dog bite victims successfully present their claims for monetary damages.
Diagnostic tests go well beyond the impact made by photographs. They describe everything from the depth of a dog bite injury to any infections that have developed because of a canine’s actions.
Dog bites can trigger other symptoms that include permanent scarring and/or disfigurement. Diagnostic tests help a victim of a dog bite present a persuasive claim for an insurance company, as well as for a judge presiding over a civil lawsuit.
Treatments can include expensive procedures such as using antibiotics to stem the development of infections. If you expect to receive just compensation for a dog bite injury, you have to hand over medical records that describe different treatment regimens.
It is also important for your physician to write up a prognosis that covers the estimated amount of future medical expenses.
Filling the Employment Gap
Although medical bills comprise the largest expense in most dog bite cases, lost wages can also contribute to a healthy settlement made with the dog owner’s insurance company or the generous award handed down by a civil court judge. Receiving one or more dog bites can lead to physical limitations that make it difficult, if not impossible to hold down a job.
Timekeeping records provided by your employer, along with the copies of bank statements presented by a plaintiff, can demonstrate how much money the plaintiff lost because of a dog bite injury. A written statement from a plaintiff’s employer can describe how a dog bite injury has prevented a plaintiff from completing standard job functions.
Getting California Government Agencies Involved
An experienced personal injury lawyer who specializes in handling dog bite cases gets the local animal control office involved in a settlement. Animal control can provide the dog owner’s insurance company with detailed reports concerning the history of the canine suspected of biting the plaintiff. If a dog has a history of aggressive behavior, the owner of the dog in question can be held legally liable for negligence.
Also, a detailed report of a dog bite that is submitted by the appropriate law enforcement agency should help a victim present a compelling insurance claim.
A Personal Injury Attorney Can Help
Going it alone when filing an insurance claim and/or a civil lawsuit is a recipe for failure. Insurance companies employ professionals that know how to find holes in a claim, and the legal team representing a dog owner can defeat a civil lawsuit by making a couple of simple arguments.
Hiring a California dog bite lawyer is the first step for learning how you can settle a dog bite case in your favor.