Dog bites can be a serious and traumatic experience, both physically and emotionally. It’s important to understand your rights and the legal process surrounding dog bites to get the compensation you deserve. Nevada dog bite laws can vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. So the Washoe County dog bite laws may be different from those governing Clark County. Navigating the legal system can be challenging without the help of a local expert dog bite lawyer like Matt Dion and his associates.
Here are some frequently asked questions about Nevada’s laws governing dog bites, and what to do if you’ve been bitten.
Nevada Dog Bite Laws FAQs
What happens if a dog bites someone in Nevada?
If a dog bites someone in Nevada, the injured party may file a personal injury claim to recover damages. According to Nevada dog bite laws, the dog owner may be held liable for any medical expenses, lost wages, and any other costs associated with the bite, such as pain and suffering if it can be proved the owner was negligent or had reason to know that their dog was dangerous prior to the bite incident.
It is a requirement to report dog bites to local authorities in Washoe County and Las Vegas. It is recommended that victims seek medical attention as soon as possible and gather any relevant evidence, such as eyewitness accounts and photographs of the injuries. A personal injury lawyer with expertise in dog bite cases can:
- help assess the case,
- accurately evaluate damages,
- assist with evidence and expert testimony, and
- provide representation for a lawsuit or settlement negotiations.
In some cases, the dog owner's homeowner's insurance policy may cover the cost of the bite. If not, the bite victim may need to file a lawsuit against the dog owner in order to receive compensation.
It is important to note that specific laws and regulations regarding dog bites may vary by city and county in Nevada, so it is advisable to consult a local attorney for legal advice.
Also, the law requires a 10-day quarantine for animals that have bitten or scratched starting from the date of the bite.
Is Nevada a "one bite" state?
Nevada is a “one bite” state — sometimes called the one-free-bite rule. This means the owner of the dog may not be held strictly liable for the bite unless the dog has already bitten someone or displayed a "vicious propensity." In these cases, the victim must prove the owner knew the dog was dangerous (breed, past behavior, training, etc.).
Once the dog has bitten someone, it will be classified as "dangerous" or "vicious," which places it in a different classification of liability.
Can I sue for a dog bite in Nevada?
Yes, you can sue for a dog bite in Nevada. If you have been bitten by a dog, you may be able to recover damages for medical expenses, lost wages, and other damages resulting from the bite.
Is a dog bite considered trauma?
A dog bite can be considered trauma, especially if the bite was serious and required medical attention. A dog bite can result in physical injury, emotional distress, mental health problems, and may have long-lasting effects.
Can I sue if a dog attacks my dog?
Yes, in Nevada, you may sue if your dog was attacked by another dog. You may be able to recover damages for veterinary expenses, as well as any other costs related to the attack.
What is considered a serious dog bite?
A serious dog bite is one that requires medical attention beyond first aid, such as sutures or reconstructive surgery.
Is there a time limit to file a claim for a dog bite in Nevada or Washoe County?
Yes, there is a time limit to file a claim for a dog bite in Nevada and Washoe County. The Nevada statute of limitations for personal injury claims is two years from the date of the injury.
Do doctors have to report dog bites in Nevada?
Doctors are required to report dog bites to local health departments in Washoe County and Las Vegas, Nevada, but it can vary depending on the county. Reporting is required to help prevent the spread of disease and to track bite patterns in the state.
Does insurance cover a dog bite?
Yes, in most cases, insurance will cover a dog bite. Dog owners typically have homeowner's insurance or renter's insurance that will cover the cost of a dog bite.
But, some insurance companies may limit the amount they will pay out for a dog bite claim or exclude certain breeds of dogs from coverage. It's important to carefully review the insurance policy to understand what it covers.
Do I need a lawyer to handle my dog bite case in Nevada or Washoe County?
While it is not required, it is highly recommended to retain a lawyer to handle your dog bite case in Nevada or Washoe County. An experienced personal injury lawyer can help you navigate the legal process and ensure that you receive the maximum compensation available.
Can I file a claim against the homeowner's insurance policy if I am bitten by a dog in Nevada?
Yes, in many cases you can file a claim against the homeowner's insurance policy if you are bitten by a dog in Nevada or Washoe County. An experienced personal injury lawyer can advise you on the best course of action.
What if the dog's owner does not have insurance or enough insurance to cover my damages?
If the dog's owner does not have insurance or enough insurance to cover your damages, you may still be able to recover compensation through other means, such as the owner's personal assets.
Can a dog owner be held liable if their dog bites a trespasser in Nevada or Washoe County?
Yes, a dog owner can be held liable if their dog bites a trespasser in Nevada or Washoe County. However, the extent of their liability may depend on the circumstances of the bite, such as whether the trespasser was actively engaged in criminal activity on the property.
Do you have to report a dog bite in Nevada?
In Washoe County and Las Vegas, it is a legal requirement to report a dog bite. But, other jurisdictions in Nevada may follow different dog bite laws so consulting with a local attorney for legal advice is recommended.
Can a dog owner be held liable if their dog bites a person who was teasing or tormenting the dog in Nevada or Washoe County?
Yes, a dog owner can still be held liable if their dog bites a person who was teasing or tormenting the dog in Nevada or Washoe County. However, the extent of their liability may depend on the circumstances of the bite, such as whether the person was intentionally or recklessly causing harm to the dog.
How do you negotiate a dog bite claim?
Negotiating a dog bite claim typically involves reaching a settlement agreement with the dog owner or their insurance company. However, attempting to negotiate directly with the dog owner or their insurance company can result in less compensation and a slower resolution to the claim. Hiring a personal injury lawyer is likely to give the injured party the best result.
Personal injury lawyers have the expertise and experience necessary to negotiate with insurance companies and get the best possible outcome for their client. They also know the laws and regulations surrounding dog bites and personal injury claims, and can navigate the process smoothly on the injured party's behalf. Additionally, they can represent the victim in court if needed.
Don’t Settle for Less
The Pitfalls of Self-Representation in a Nevada Dog Bite Case
Attempting to negotiate a settlement directly with the dog owner or their insurance company will typically not produce good results for the injured party:
- In some cases, dog bite victims may not be able to secure compensation for their damages. This can result in financial burden for the victim and their family.
- Insurance companies are not on your side and will try to settle your claim for as little as possible.
- Negotiating a settlement can be complicated and time-consuming. You may not have the legal knowledge or experience to get the best outcome.
- Without a personal injury lawyer, you may not know the full extent of your damages, which can lead to an inadequate settlement.
- Insurance companies may use tactics to delay or deny your claim
Maximize Your Compensation with an Expert Dog Bite Lawyer in Nevada
A personal injury lawyer can help you navigate the legal system and ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve.
- They can help you gather evidence, such as medical records and witness statements, to support your case.
- They are experienced in negotiating with insurance companies and can help you get the best settlement possible.
- They can help you determine the full extent of your damages, including medical expenses, lost wages, and other costs related to the bite.
- They can represent you in court if necessary and will fight for your rights.
- They can help you understand the legal process and the laws governing dog bites in Nevada and Washoe County.
Experienced Legal Representation for Nevada Dog Bite Victims
After 9 years representing major insurance carriers, I switched sides and started helping injured individuals recover damages against insurance companies. I use this rare insider experience to help my clients avoid tactics insurance companies and defendants use so my clients don’t settle for a substandard offer. My goal is to give you peace of mind knowing you’re in experienced hands. I’m here to help make the process as smooth as possible so that you can get the maximum compensation, and get your life back on track.
Costs and Outcomes of Dog Bite Claims in the United States and Nevada
- The average cost paid out for dog bite claims was $49,025 In 2021.
- Medical expenses: The average cost of a dog bite-related hospital stay was $18,200, approximately 50 percent higher than the average injury-related hospital stay according to the Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project (HCUP).
- Lost wages: Individuals who are bitten by dogs may also miss work, resulting in lost wages. In some cases, this can add up to thousands of dollars in lost income.
- Property damage: Dog bites can also result in damage to clothing or personal property. This can result in additional expenses for the victim.
- More than 50 percent of dog bites occur on the dog owner’s property, and they account for one-third of all homeowners insurance liability claims.
- Nearly 1 in 5 people who are bitten by a dog require medical attention.
- Dog bites and other dog-related injuries caused $881 million to be paid out in 2021. That’s more than one-third of all homeowners liability claim dollars paid out in 2021 according to the Insurance Information Institute (Triple-I) and State Farm.
Note: It is important to keep in mind that these are just averages and each dog bite case is unique. The actual costs and outcomes of a dog bite claim can vary significantly depending on a variety of factors. Additionally, these statistics are specific to the United States and may not reflect the exact laws and regulations in Nevada.