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Bitten by a Dog in NJ? How Important are Photographs?

When you or someone you love has been the victim of an animal attack, you may be so focused on getting medical treatment that you may not take the time to do something that could make a huge difference in the outcome of a personal injury lawsuit. Take photographs! If you can’t personally get out your phone and take photos of the scene and your injuries, ask someone else to do it.

In fact, begin a photo diary immediately following a dog bite attack. As time goes on, memories fade. Photographs really will tell the story – from the first horrific moments, through medical treatment and even can document the scarring or other disfiguring injury you’ve suffered from the dog bite. Your lawyer will be able to use this evidence to prove your case.

You will want to assemble some time lapse photos to show the progression of the extent of medical intervention and treatment you needed to get. Therefore, try to take the photos with some sort of timestamp. You can use the phone or camera’s internal calendar and clock. Or, you can use a newspaper to show the date.
Take photos of the initial injury and again before you get actual medical treatment. Then, take photos of stitches or any other necessary treatment.
Continue to document healing including swelling, bruising and anything else that might help your attorney prove the extent of the pain and suffering you were forced to endure.
There are statute of limitations relating to dog bite and other personal injury lawsuits. You generally have up to two years from the date you incurred the injury to file a lawsuit. You should keep taking photographs up and until settlement negotiations begin (or until your lawyer tells you it is no longer necessary) so your lawyer can show how the dog bite created permanent scars.

In animal attack cases, it’s not unusual to have a “he said, she said” situation where the dog’s owner claims you got too close, that you instigated the attack or even that the injuries you claim to have weren’t caused by their pet.

Be aware that the insurance company is going to try to settle for as little as possible. Your attorney needs to be ready to fight for maximum compensation. Choose a lawyer who understands the physical and emotional ramifications of an animal attack. Long after the wounds have healed, many dog bite victims are left fearful of leaving the house and being around animals. This can be life-altering depending on what you do for a living and whether your friends have pets.

If you or someone you love has been bitten by a dog or other animal, contact Rudnick, Addonizio, Pappa & Casazza PC today for a consultation about your case. We will leave no stone unturned as we investigate what happened and we will fight for maximum compensation for your medical bills, pain and suffering and more.

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