Seeking Compensation for Psychological Injuries After a Dog Bite
Being attacked by a dog can cause serious physical injuries that require immediate and ongoing medical attention, depending on the nature of the attack. In some cases, the injuries sustained are more than just the physical wounds because the victim develops anxiety, fear, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, and other types of psychological distress as a result of a dog attack. These kinds of psychological injuries can affect a person’s life in many ways, and leave him or her unable to engage in activities he once enjoyed, such as going to a park for a walk because he or she fears there will be dogs present. Psychological injuries can be especially difficult to resolve if the victim is a child.Compensation for Emotional Damages
Just as it is possible to receive compensation that covers treatment of physical injuries, it is possible for a person who is bitten by a dog to receive compensation for the psychological injuries sustained in an attack by a dog. Compensation may include the coverage of expenses for present and future counselling and other psychological care, but can also cover non-economic pain and suffering. In some cases, a parent who witnesses his child being attacked by a dog may also recover compensation for emotional distress.
There is no way to quantify the exact amount an injured person will be awarded for pain and suffering or psychological injuries, although a serious bite which causes disfigurement or scarring may be compensated at a greater rate than minor bites. The age of the victim may also play a role, with younger children being more likely to be traumatized from a dog bite.
After being bitten in a dog attack, an injured person should seek a medical evaluation as to their mental state and keep a record of how the incident affects his daily life. Dog owners are held strictly liable when their dogs bite other people, with limited exceptions. This means that as long as a plaintiff can show that the dog bit him, and he suffered injuries and damages or losses as a result of the dog bite, he can usually receive compensation. With psychological injuries, it may take more to prove that there was an injury suffered than with physical injuries. It is not impossible, however, to do so through testimony and medical documentation.Let Us Assist You
For success in filing a claim against a dog owner for injuries sustained by you or your child, you need a dedicated San Jose personal injury attorney who has experience dealing with dog bites to help ensure that you are compensated for psychological as well as physical injuries. You can find attorneys experienced in this area of law at the law firm of Corsiglia, McMahon & Allard, L.L.P. We are proud to serve Santa Clara County, San Mateo County, Monterey County, Alameda County, San Benito County, and the Bay Area.Sources