Kansas Dog Bite Attorney
Dog Bites & Attacks
Dog bites and attacks often result in serious injuries—and they often are sustained by young children. There are millions of dog bites nationwide every year, and while many of them are minor, hundreds of thousands of victims need emergency medical treatment, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
It can be difficult to know what to do after a dog bite. Should you contact a lawyer or deal with the injury on your own? You might receive a lot of conflicting advice from friends and neighbors. Some people might tell you to sue the dog owner. Other people might advise you to do nothing.
Take the guesswork out of your dog bite case. Contact an experienced attorney who thoroughly understands the law and knows how to build a strong personal injury claim. At Bretz Injury Law, we provide free initial consultations and contingency fees. This means that you do not owe anything unless/until we recover compensation for you. Our attorneys can help you understand your legal rights and options, including whether you have grounds to bring a claim against the dog owner or another negligent party.
What Types of Dogs Are the Most Dangerous?
Opinions differ over which dog breeds are dangerous. Some people insist that any dog can be dangerous, regardless of the dog's breed. Statistically, unneutered male dogs are the most likely to bite, but they can be of any breed.
Even so, many people believe that certain dogs bite people more than others.
Some of the dog breeds that spark the most concern among the general public include:
- Pit bulls
- German Shepherds
At Bretz Injury Law, we recognize that any dog can be aggressive—and a bite or attack by any breed can have devastating or even deadly consequences. Our attorneys fight tirelessly for the rights of victims and their loved ones, working to hold negligent dog owners accountable for the harm their pets cause.
What Is Kansas’s Dog Bite Rule?
Kansas follows what is known as a "one-bite rule." This means that the dog's owner must have known or had reason to believe his or her dog would bite in order to be considered liable. In other words, dog bite cases in Kansas operate in much the same way as a standard personal injury claim. You must prove that the dog owner was negligent and had reason to believe the dog might be aggressive to bring a claim in most cases. While there are certain exceptions, they are relatively rare.
So, if you or your child was bitten by a dog, you may be entitled to compensation if the owner of that dog knew the dog was dangerous due to the animal trying to bite someone or acting aggressively toward another person at least once before. If you are not sure what the owner knows about the dog that bit you, talk to us immediately. We can investigate and help determine liability.
What to Do If You Are Bitten or Attacked by a Dog
If a dog bites you or your child, take the following steps to protect your health, your safety, and your legal rights:
- Seek Medical Attention: Don't assume that the injury is minor or that it will heal on its own. Have a doctor or EMT examine your dog bite.
- Get the Dog Owner’s Name: Obtain the name and address from the owner and ask for dog license information (if possible).
- Contact the Authorities: After a dog bite or attack, you should contact law enforcement and file a report with the county animal control.
- Talk to Witnesses: People who saw what happened can help support any dog bite claim you may have. Get their contact information if possible.
- Document the Attack: Try to get photos of the dog that attacked you or your loved one, as well as the exact location where your attack took place.
- Visit Your Doctor: Make sure you schedule a follow-up appointment with your doctor. Serious dog bites can have serious health consequences.
- Contact a Lawyer: An experienced attorney knows how to investigate these types of cases and can deal directly with insurance companies on your behalf.
When you contact Bretz Injury Law, our lawyers can answer any questions you may have. We are happy to meet with you in person at our office or in your home, the hospital, or any other place that is most convenient for you. We can also discuss your potential case over the phone and provide our advice regarding your next steps.
Compensation for Dog Bite Victims
Often, serious dog bites and attacks lead to devastating, catastrophic injuries. In the most severe cases, these incidents can even be fatal, particularly—and tragically—when the victim is a small child. At Bretz Injury Law, we recognize your need for justice. That is why our attorneys pursue all possible avenues of compensation and work tirelessly to maximize our clients’ recoveries.
Depending on the specific details of your case, you may be entitled to compensation for the following economic and non-economic damages:
- Emergency medical care
- Surgeries and other treatments
- Medical equipment
- Pain and suffering
- Lost income/wages
- Disability/diminished earning capacity
- Future medical expenses
- Future lost earnings
- Emotional distress and trauma
- Loss of support, love, and companionship
- Funeral/burial expenses
While nothing can undo the pain and trauma you have endured, a successful personal injury or wrongful death claim can allow you to recover the financial resources you need to heal. Just as importantly, a successful claim can provide a much-needed sense of justice and send a clear message that negligent dog owners will be held accountable.
Do I Need to File a Dog Bite Lawsuit in Kansas?
Most dog bite cases are settled through negotiations with the dog owner's homeowner insurance policy. But in some cases, a lawsuit may be necessary. This could be the case if the dog owner argues that you were trespassing when the attack occurred or that you provoked the dog to bite.
An experienced attorney can examine the details of your case and help decide the best course of action. At Bretz Injury Law, we strive to negotiate fair settlements for our clients to help them avoid the cost and time associated with going to trial. However, we are also committed to ensuring our clients receive the best possible recovery; if this means going to trial, we are fully prepared to do so. Throughout the process, we will be there to guide you and help you understand what to expect. Our team answers phone calls 24/7 and is ready to provide the compassionate, attentive legal service you deserve.
How Bretz Injury Law Can Help
The circumstances surrounding each dog bite and attack are unique. That's why it's important to contact our law firm as soon as possible. We can investigate what happened and uncover the truth about your specific case.
If you are represented by Bretz Injury Law, we will aggressively pursue compensation on your behalf. This starts with a thorough investigation of the attack. Often, this includes reviewing your doctor's diagnosis, consulting with experts, and interviewing people who know the dog.
Don’t underestimate the complexity of your case. Dog bite investigations can be extremely complicated, and you should get experienced legal assistance now. Our firm proudly represents clients in Hutchinson, Salina, Wichita, Garden City, Dodge City, Liberal, Hays, and all of the surrounding areas.
Should I see a doctor after a minor dog bite?
Yes, even if you believe your injuries are minor, you should still see a medical professional. Without proper treatment, dog bites can lead to serious complications, including potentially life-threatening infections and permanent scarring. A doctor can provide the proper treatment to help ensure the best possible physical recovery.
Are owners always liable when their dogs bite or attack someone?
Not necessarily. Because Kansas follows a one-bite rule, the injured victim or the family of someone who was killed by a dog may need to prove that the owner knew about (or reasonably should have known about) the dog’s propensity to bite or be aggressive. They may also need to prove that the owner failed to take reasonable measures to restrain the dog or otherwise prevent it from causing injury. Additionally, the dog owner may be only partially liable if they can successfully prove that the victim provoked the dog, and victims may be unable to pursue compensation after a dog bite or attack if they were trespassing on private property when the incident occurred.
Can you sue a dog owner if their dog attacks your pet or livestock?
Yes, Kansas has a specific law (Kansas Statute 47-645) that states a dog owner is liable when their dog attacks, injures, or kills a domestic animal. This includes both pets and livestock, but the law does not apply to cases involving dog attacks against humans.
How long do I have to file a dog bite lawsuit in Kansas?
Dog bite cases fall under the standard personal injury statute of limitations. This means that, just like in any other personal injury case, you only have two years from the date of the bite or attack (in most cases) to file a lawsuit. While there are some exceptions to this rule, they are relatively rare. In most cases, if you fail to bring a lawsuit within two years of the date of the injury, your case will be dismissed, and you will be unable to recover compensation for your damages.
How much is my dog bite claim worth?
Unfortunately, it is not possible to accurately determine the value of your case without first reviewing the many specific details involved. Numerous factors—including the nature and severity of your injuries, the extent of your damages, and more—play a role in the overall value of your claim. We encourage you to reach out to our lawyers at Bretz Injury Law to schedule a free initial consultation. During this initial meeting, we can review the details of your case and provide more information tailored to your unique situation.