If you or your child has been bitten and injured by a dog, you may file a civil lawsuit against the owner and/or handler of the animal or a third party whose negligence contributed to the attack. However, finding the right attorney to represent you is not a simple matter of going online and googling “dog bite lawyers.”
How to Choose a Dog Bite Attorney
You need to do some research and ask yourself some questions before deciding on having a particular attorney take your case.
Is the Lawyer Competent?
Not all lawyers have experience handling dog bite cases. It is important that you ask your lawyer how many dog bite cases they have handled, and follow up with research to confirm they have substantial experience in these cases. A lawyer who chooses a criminal practice or who specializes only in car wrecks might not be familiar with dog bite law and/or the rules of evidence and procedure necessary to prosecute and try a dog bite lawsuit.
Does the Lawyer Have Integrity?
Talk to the lawyer who you are considering retaining. Does it seem to you that the attorney cares about you and your case and answers your questions directly and clearly? Also, do you get a good feeling of trust when you speak to the lawyer?
What Is the Lawyer’s Reputation?
Search the internet. Does the attorney have good reviews? Does the attorney act appropriately and in the best interest of his clients? Has the lawyer handled cases with significant amounts at stake?
Is the Lawyer Willing to Take Your Case to Trial if Necessary?
A defendant or their insurance company might not offer enough compensation for damages suffered as a result of the animal attack. There are many possible reasons that a case might not settle before trial. But not all injury lawyers have experience regularly going to the courtroom. You can be sure the insurance company is aware of which lawyers will go the distance and which do not, and the settlement offers will reflect that. Research to make sure your attorney regularly goes to the courthouse and gets good results. Otherwise, you might not obtain sufficient compensation.