Suffolk Dog Bite Lawyer

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Does the “One Bite” Law Apply in Suffolk?

In Suffolk, the “One Bite” law no longer applies. This means that if you were bitten by a dog, your attorney will need to demonstrate that the dog’s owner was aware of the dog’s vicious propensities and did nothing to prevent the attack. Despite dogs being commonly regarded as beloved household pets and family members, the reality is they can still be unpredictable in behavior and temperament. 

Shockingly, millions of people are attacked by dogs annually in the United States with approximately 800,000 incidents requiring medical attention. Nearly half of these cases result in individuals seeking treatment at an emergency room. If you have been a victim of a dog bite in Suffolk, it is crucial to seek the assistance of a knowledgeable dog bite lawyer who can help protect your rights and pursue the compensation you deserve.

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The Statute of Limitations for Dog Bite Cases

When it comes to personal injuries caused by animal attacks, such as dog bites, it’s important to be aware of the “statute of limitations”. This refers to the time limit within which you can file a lawsuit against the responsible party. It’s important to note that the statute of limitations can vary from state to state. In Suffolk, the statute of limitations for dog bite cases is typically three years, which is similar to the statute of limitations of most personal injury cases. By seeking legal guidance, you can ensure that you adhere to the appropriate time limit for filing a lawsuit so you can protect your rights effectively. A knowledgeable dog bite lawyer will provide you with the necessary support and guidance throughout the legal process thereby helping you pursue the compensation you deserve for your injuries.

When evaluating your damages, your personal injury attorney will consider the following factors to determine a fair settlement:


Financial Losses

This includes medical bills, property damage, and lost wages. Your attorney will gather evidence such as receipts, bills, repair estimates, and expert testimonies to assess your current and future expenses resulting from the accident.


Personal Losses

These encompass physical pain, emotional suffering, and mental distress. While it is challenging to assign a precise monetary value to personal losses (also known as non-economic damages), they are just as significant as financial losses.


Punitive Damages

It’s important to note that punitive damages can only be ordered by the court and are relatively rare. Your attorney will inform you if your case may qualify for punitive damages.

Our ultimate goal is to secure a settlement or verdict that enhances your quality of life and provides for future treatment. Therefore, we will diligently pursue the maximum appropriate compensation through negotiations or trial.


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Why Do Dogs Attack People?

You may be wondering why dogs suddenly or randomly attack people when unprovoked. Dogs are protective of their masters and tend to be territorial in nature.  Generally speaking, they can be unpredictable when feeling threatened or sensing potential harm to their family. 

More often than not, when dogs attack they tend to bite at the face. What causes dogs to choose the face, and why do they attack at all? The common causes may surprise you:

  • To show their power – biting someone, whether it’s someone the dog knows or doesn’t, can often be a sign the dog is trying to assert their dominance. They are trying to show they own their territory and no one should enter it but them. Signs of aggression can also be a result of interrupting your dog’s routine, such as sleeping, eating, cleaning itself, or even playing. Do not irritate a resting dog, and do not approach a dog that appears territorial. It is better to steer clear if unsure. 
  • Defensiveness – If the dog is afraid, and a stranger or family member approaches it abruptly, this can startle the dog causing it to lash out. Think of how you, as a human being, react when a stranger or even someone close to you approaches you out of nowhere. Because of their nature, a dog can assume your intentions are bad when approached without warning.
  • Punishment-induced biting – If a dog is being punished, they may react equally to the person punishing them. However, it goes without saying that hitting or physically reprimanding a dog is abuse, but it is important to recognize that this could be another factor that caused an attack.

What Should You Do After a Dog Bite Injury in Suffolk?

As a resident of Suffolk, you have legal avenues available to hold dog owners accountable for their pets’ actions. The specific legal course of action will depend upon factors such as the dog’s history and the owner’s behavior. Understanding these nuances is crucial when considering legal recourse for a dog bite incident.

If it’s the first time the dog attacked, and the owner had no prior indication of the dog exhibiting “vicious propensities”, your case may be less straightforward. The term “vicious propensities”, is aggressive prior behavior such as growling, snapping at someone, lurching, barking or charging at people. However, if the dog has a history of multiple attacks, the presence of “vicious propensity” is easily confirmed. 

Regardless of the conditions, you should never hesitate to explore your legal options if you or a loved one has been attacked by a dog. Your life and well-being are paramount, and pursuing legal action is your right. Contact the experienced dog bite injury attorneys at Gabriel Legal Injury Lawyers, who will fight for your interests throughout the legal process.

However, before taking legal action, it is imperative to place your health first. Seek immediate medical attention for any dog bite injuries. Further, delaying medical care can negatively impact not only your health but your case in court. Failing to promptly address your injuries may damage your case by giving the impression your injuries were not serious enough to warrant treatment. 

As mentioned, in Suffolk, dog owners can be held liable for their dog’s actions if it exhibits prior “vicious propensities” and the owner was aware of it and did nothing to protect you. This amplifies the importance of gathering evidence and building a strong case with the assistance of a skilled dog bite lawyer.

Remember, seeking medical attention promptly and consulting with a knowledgeable attorney are vital steps in ensuring your well-being.


Frequently Asked Questions

Where Do Dog Bites Occur Most Often?

Approximately 50% of dog bites occur at home with familiar dogs. Having a dog in the household increases the chances of adults or children being bit. The risk of bites further rises with the number of dogs at home. For example, homes with two or more dogs make adults five times more likely to experience a bite compared to dog-free households.

Seeking legal assistance from a dog bite lawyer is crucial if you or a loved one has been injured. At Gabriel Legal Injury Lawyers, we are dedicated to protecting your rights and pursuing fair compensation. Contact our dog bite injury attorneys to receive the guidance and support you need.

Who Is Most Often Bitten by Dogs?

  • Children and men are most often bitten by dogs.
  • For children, dog bites are most common between the ages of five to nine years old. Children require medical attention more often than adults.
  • Men are bitten by dogs more often than women.


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What Should I Do If an Unfamiliar Dog Approaches?

If an unfamiliar dog approaches you and you wish to avoid interaction, follow these steps:

  • Do not move, stay still.
  • Remain calm and do not panic.
  • Do not make direct eye contact with the dog.
  • Do not make loud noises.
  • Say “No” in a deep, firm voice.
  • Stand sideways toward the dog.
  • Simply back away or let the dog pass.
  • If needed, slowly raise your hands to protect your neck, keeping your elbows in.

How Can I Prevent Dog Bites?

To help prevent dog bites and ensure your safety, follow these do’s and don’ts:


  • When you see a dog behaving strangely near a home, inform an adult at that home about the behavior.
  • If you are knocked down by a dog, curl into a ball, put your hands over your ears and face, and tuck your head in.
  • Use a jacket or bag/purse to shield yourself.
  • Call for help.
  • Remain calm.


  • Allow young children to play unsupervised with a dog.
  • Turn and run away from a dog.
  • Encourage aggressive play with your dog.
  • Approach an unfamiliar dog.
  • Make loud startling noises.
  • Pet a dog that has not sniffed you first or is unfamiliar with you.
  • Disturb a dog that is caring for puppies, eating or sleeping.

By following these guidelines, you can minimize the risk of dog bites and ensure your safety.

What Should I Do if I am Attacked or Bitten by a Dog?

Seeking prompt medical attention after a dog bite is crucial for your safety and well-being. If you’re unsure about the severity of your injuries and wish to evaluate your situation before seeking professional medical attention, follow these guidelines:

Clean and treat the wound:

Find a safe place and wash the bite wounds with soap and water.

If the bite is deep or if you haven’t had a tetanus shot in the last five years, seek medical attention.

Medical attention is necessary if the wound becomes red, swollen, or if you experience illness.

Assess the bite severity and apply pressure if it is bleeding. 

Serious bites may include muscle or bone exposure, extreme pain, uncontrolled bleeding, or loss of function.

If the bite is severe, or continues to bleed, call for immediate medical assistance or visit the emergency room.

Concerns About Rabies:

Dog bite victims are at risk of contracting Rabies.

Contact the police department or animal control agency if the dog is behaving strangely, appears sick or foaming at the mouth.

Contact the dog owner to gather information about the dog’s vaccination history, including the Rabies vaccine license number and the name of the veterinarian who administered the vaccine.

Signs of Infection or Rabies Concerns:

  • If the wound shows signs of infection (redness, pain, warmth, swelling) seek medical attention.
  • If you’re unable to confirm the dog’s rabies vaccination status, consult a healthcare professional for appropriate treatment.

Remember, timely medical care is vital after a dog bite to prevent complications and ensure your well-being.  The more time you delay in getting medical assistance, the more dangerous your injuries become. 

If you have any legal concerns or need assistance, consult a dog bite lawyer to protect your rights and explore potential compensation for your injuries.

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What Diseases Can Dog Bites Cause?

Dog bites can lead to various diseases that require medical attention. It’s essential to understand these risks and seek the guidance of experienced dog bite lawyers. Here’s what you need to know:


  • Rabies: Rabies is a rare but life-threatening viral infection affecting the brain. Prompt medical attention is vital as rabies is almost always fatal if left untreated.
  • Tetanus: Tetanus is a bacterial infection that can cause paralysis, especially in deep wounds. Seeking medical care is crucial to prevent serious complications.
  • MRSA (Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus): MRSA is a type of antibiotic-resistant staph infection that can be transmitted through dog bites. Proper medical evaluation and treatment are necessary to address MRSA infections.
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Recognizing Dog Bite Infections

Watch for signs of infection such as changes in wound color, swelling, or fever. If you notice these symptoms, contact a medical professional immediately.

Identifying High-Risk Dog Breeds

According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, the top ten most dangerous dog breeds include German Shepherds, mixed breeds, Pit Bulls, Rottweilers, Jack Russell Terriers, Chow Chows, Spaniels, Collies, Saint Bernards, and Labrador Retrievers.  However, in most instances the aggressive behavior of the dog is learned from its master. 

SuffolkDog Bite Lawyers Can Help

If you or a loved one suffered a dog bite injury, it’s important to seek the guidance of skilled dog bite lawyers. Gabriel Legal specializes in dog bite cases and can provide the legal support you need.


By consulting a dog bite lawyer, you can protect your rights, understand your legal options and pursue compensation for your injuries. Don’t hesitate to reach out to Suffolk Dog Bite Lawyers at Gabriel Legal Injury Attorneys for professional assistance.

Determining Liability in an Suffolk Personal Injury Claim

Identifying all potential defendants who may be liable for a personal injury requires a thorough investigation. If someone else failed to exercise due care, they can be held responsible for the resulting injuries.

It’s essential to recognize that the person directly responsible for the accident may not be the sole party held liable. For instance, in a drunk driving auto accident, not only the intoxicated driver but also the individual who served alcohol to the visibly intoxicated person could be held responsible.

By carefully assessing the circumstances, an experienced personal injury attorney can determine the parties who may be held accountable in your specific case.

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The sooner you contact a personal injury attorney in Suffolk after an accident, the easier it will be to collect evidence.Having a clear understanding of the negligence laws in your state is crucial when pursuing a personal injury claim. Your attorney will play a crucial role in proving fault in your case. While some states follow “no-fault” laws, it’s important to note that Suffolk does not fall into this category.

It’s important to understand that even if you bear some responsibility for the accident, you may still be eligible for compensation. It’s important to note that Suffolk follows a pure comparative negligence rule, which means that even if a plaintiff is deemed to be more than 50% at fault, they can still recover damages. The amount of compensation they receive will be reduced by their assigned percentage of fault.

Overview of the Personal Injury Lawsuit Process

It’s natural to have concerns about what to expect during the claims process, but rest assured, our experienced lawyers are here to guide you. Here is an outline of the stages you can anticipate:


Initial Consultation

This is an opportunity for you to share your account of the incident and ask questions about the case. The attorney will evaluate the viability of your case and provide appropriate advice before entering a fee agreement.


Case Investigation

Your attorney will conduct a comprehensive investigation, including interviews with you and witnesses, review of your background and medical records, to gather necessary information and determine the best course of action for your case.


Filing Court Documents

Your lawyer will file a personal injury complaint, which serves as the initial document of the case. The complaint outlines the nature of the incident and the injuries sustained, and must be properly served to the defendant along with related documents.


The Discovery Process

This involves the exchange of evidence between the involved parties. Interrogations, document requests, sworn statements, and depositions may be part of the process. Your attorney may also co


Pre-Trial Litigation and Motions

After reaching maximum medical improvement (MMI), your lawyer will demand compensation based on the full extent of your damages. Negotiations with the at-fault party’s insurers will take place to seek a fair settlement.



If an out-of-court agreement cannot be reached, the case will proceed to trial. The jury will determine the defendant’s liability, and if the verdict favors the plaintiff, the defendant will be obligated to compensate for the identified damages.

Arrange Your Free Consultation in Suffolk

Gabriel Legal Injury Lawyers specializes in personal injury cases, handling even the most complex matters. Our legal team is well-versed in the laws and knows how to pursue the compensation you deserve.

Let’s talk

Contact us today for a free consultation and let us assist you in moving forward after this challenging time.

Suffolk Dog Bite Lawyer

4.8 Stars


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