Medical bills can rack up pretty quickly after a dog bite incident. The law allows for accident victims to recover damages against the parties that harmed them. Basically what that means is that if someone hurts you, they have to pay you enough money to put you back into the level of happiness that you were in before they hurt you. Obviously this is not the case for any injury that occurs. An injured victim must be able to prove a case for negligence. That basically means that you have to show that it was entirely the other person’s fault that you got hurt. The law is designed this way so that people will be more careful. It would be terrible if everyone could just go around hurting each other and no one had to take the personal responsibility to pay for it. Before a dog bit you, you did not have painful lacerations on your arms and legs. Before a dog bit you, you were able to run and jump and go about your normal day as opposed to being forced to visiting your doctor several times and constantly treating and bandaging your lacerations and abrasions to make sure that they are healing properly and that they are not infected so you can avoid permanent impairments. Before a dog bit you, you were not afraid of dogs. You did not feel uncomfortable every time you took a jog in the park. The homeowners insurance of the owner of the dog that bit you cannot go back in time and take the dog bite away, but they can pay you an amount that compensates you for your losses.
Medical bills are the first part of a dog bite damage equation. Typically, the higher the medical bills are, the higher the total amount of damages will be. That is certainly not always the case, but it is illustrative of the general rule. Medical bills are a part of what is referred to as special damages. Special damages are those harms that can be precisely calculated. If a dog mauls you while trying to get in your car and go to work and you miss work that day as a result, your wages from that day will be added as part of the special damages. Doctor’s visits are extremely expensive. Your health insurance may step up and pay those bills initially, but they too are entitled to be reimbursed by the at-fault party. A vicious dog can inflict several thousand dollars worth of medical damage in only a few seconds.
General damages are different from special damages in that they have no precise value. We are forced to do our best to simply assign a fair value to them. Physical pain and suffering entitles one to general damages. Emotional distress such as fear and anxiety of running in the park would also entitle a victim to recover general damages. These damages are extremely difficult to value. An experienced dog bite lawyer can give you extremely valuable insight as to what your general damages should be. Attempting to negotiate your claim on your own will almost always result in you being undercompensated. Don’t be a victim twice, contact a Utah Dog Bite Lawyer today.