Dog Bite Compensation in Ontario
Nearly half a million people report dog bites every year in Canada. However, very few people seek compensation for their injuries because they aren’t aware that this is even an option. You can’t really expect to sue someone’s dog, can you? Actually, you may be entitled to compensation if the dog bite has caused a serious injury that has left you with medical bills or lost wages. In Ontario, pet owners and those who are in physical possession or control over the animal are strictly liable for all injuries and losses caused by their dog when on and off the leash. Under the Dog Owner’s Liability Act R.S.O 1990, c.D.16, the owner is responsible for the damages resulting from their dog, regardless of fault or negligence. So if you’ve sustained a dog bite injury, it’s important you know your rights, and follow the below steps to seek the compensation you deserve.
Collect Evidence After a Dog Bite Injury
The first thing you should do when you experience a dog bite injury is to take pictures of the scene and of your injuries. Then, record the name and number of the person who owns the dog. If they have their dog’s vaccination history and the name of their veterinarian on them, you’ll also want to collect this information and write it down. If there were any witnesses to the incident, you should collect their names and phone number. In the event that your injuries are more than a scratch, a police officer should be called to the scene. They will make a report and also assess whether or not you will need ambulatory care. Obtain a copy of the police report, as it will outline all the important information you will need for the case.
Seek Medical Care if You’ve Been Bitten by A Dog
Next, you should seek medical care from either your doctor or a walk-in clinic. The medical professional will examine your injuries and will treat any cuts, gashes, or bacteria which could lead to an infection. Even if you have minor injuries, it’s important to see your doctor to prevent a serious infection from spreading, and to get the necessary shots if the dog was carrying rabies, tetanus, or another serious condition. The notes that your medical professional takes will also be an important part of the evidence collection process necessary to file your claim.
Call a Personal Injury Lawyer
Even a small wound could cause you pain and suffering, medical expenses, and lost wages. So your next step is to call a lawyer to find out if you are eligible for compensation for your injuries. They will also advise you on what steps to take to get the process rolling. Depending on the damages, the plaintiff may be eligible for general damages, income loss, housekeeping, medication costs, future costs for care, OHIP subrogation recovery, and costs for legal fees and disbursements. Each case is different and it’s important to know that determining an award for damages caused by a dog attack is complex. You should only contact an accident and injury lawyer who specializes in this area of practice to ensure a positive result.
If you have sustained a dog bite injury, it’s imperative for you to seek medical care and the advice of a personal injury lawyer. There are many factors involved in deciding cases like these and a professional in this field will be your best chance at being awarded compensation for your injuries. Contact David Hollingsworth’s team of personal injury lawyers. We’ll make sure that you fully understand your rights and that every attempt to obtain the maximum compensation for your injuries is taken.