Dogs are a common household pet in America, and many families enjoy spending time with their canine friends. Obviously, dogs are still animals and occasionally bite. A dog bite can result in significant wounds and disfigurement. Fortunately, if a dog bit you, you might be entitled to financial compensation. Many of the losses associated with your injury can be covered by the damages available in such instances. Call our team of West Milford dog bite lawyers at The Epstein Law Firm, P.A. to schedule a consultation about obtaining just compensation for your losses.

Dog-Bite-Related Injuries

Dog attacks can result in severe traumatic injury. The following are a few typical ailments linked to dog bites:

  • Lacerations
  • Puncture marks
  • Eye injury
  • Nerve injury
  • Head trauma
  • Facial wounds
  • Bone fractures
  • Neck injuries
  • Infections
  • Rabies
  • Scarring

Dogs can hurt someone by biting them, but they can also scratch them or knock them over, which can lead to injuries from falls. Some dogs will even actively pursue and attack a person, creating terrifying situations and serious injuries. These injuries can be expensive to treat and call for surgery, long-term care, and rehabilitation.

Sadly, children make up a large portion of dog bite victims. Children are the victims of around half of dog bites that result in injuries, maybe in part because they do not know how to act around a strange dog.

Strict Liability Laws For Dog Bites Apply in New Jersey.

Contact our team of West Milford’s dog-bite attorneys when it comes to dog bites. New Jersey is a strict liability state. Strict responsibility states that the owner will be responsible even if you are unable to demonstrate that their actions were careless. If a dog that has always been friendly suddenly bites you, for example, the owner will still be responsible even though they had no reason to suspect the dog would cause harm to anyone else.

There is a “one bite rule” in some states. In the case of the example above, a one-bite rule effectively means that the owner would not be liable for an unanticipated first bite. This once-off liability-free bite is not available to owners in New Jersey. Additionally, if the dog is owned by more than one person, you might be able to sue both of them. The owner will likely still be responsible if the attack occurs when the dog is with a dog walker or another non-owner. Even though you might be hesitant to file a dog bite injury claim, keep in mind that the effects of a dog bite can occasionally be serious and very costly.

To protect your right to compensation, you should speak with one of our experienced West Milford personal injury lawyers at The Epstein Law Firm, P.A. right away if you or a loved one in New Jersey experienced a serious injury as a result of a dog bite. Call or email us as soon as possible to set up your free initial appointment to go over your case’s alternatives.

Inciting Incidents in NJ Dog Bite Cases

If you provoked the dog, the owner can be exempt from culpability in a dog bite prosecution. The court may rule that the dog behaved in self-defense or in defense of its owner if you attacked the dog or attempted to harm it. If you annoyed or pestered the dog in some other way prior to the occurrence, even if you did not assault it violently, this may minimize the owner’s liability.

Damages in a New Jersey Dog Bite Injury Case

The average cost of dog bite claims in the US is over $43,000. The average claim in New Jersey is a little higher, at over $47,000. Of course, the precise details of each case, such as the seriousness of the harm, will determine the actual damages.

If your injury claim is successful, you may be entitled to damages for the following:

  • Health care costs, operations, and physical therapy
  • Lost paychecks and revenue
  • Future expected medical expenses
  • Loss of ability to earn
  • Distress and suffering

There is no cap on the amount of compensatory damages you can receive in New Jersey. States frequently impose limitations on compensation for pain and suffering. None of these ceilings on the aforementioned types of compensation are in effect in New Jersey.

Punitive damages, however, are capped in New Jersey. Punitive damages are not an acceptable form of payment. Punitive damages, on the other hand, will punish offenders for egregious behavior or excessive negligence, such as if they taught their dog to attack savagely.

Five times the compensatory damages, or $350,000, is the upper limit for punitive damages. If the compensatory damages in your case are extremely high, the law will allow the plaintiff to recover the greater of the two sums; and in this way, you could get significantly more money than the original quoted amount of $350,000.

Fun Facts About West Milford, N.J.

Perhaps as early as the 1680s or 1690s, Acquackanonk served as the site of Passaic County’s first permanent colony. In areas where getting around on land was difficult, the river was used for transporting goods and raw materials between regions, most notably New York. Acquackanonk served as a crucial location.
Indian pathways served as the basis for the earliest highways. It’s strange, but the first highways were likely animal tracks since animals naturally take the path of least resistance, climbing hills by going up and over obstacles rather than straight up. It was the Indians who first used these routes, which eventually evolved into trails and were then discovered by Europeans and used by them. We can only assume that our ancestors made use of the Indian trails.

In order to staff the mines, furnaces, and forges of the London Company, the entire northern part of the county was populated with laborers and their families. Many of these people had been recruited from Germany.
The following is an interesting history of the township’s settlement, as told by William Nelson. A small number of pioneers arrived in the picturesque Wanaque Valley in the last quarter of the previous century.

How Do Dog Owners Pay for Damages After a Claim For Injury?

Tens of thousands of dollars in damages for a dog bite claim would be difficult for many people to pay. Other defendants will not be able to afford those expenses in any way. Thankfully, the defendant will frequently have insurance that will pay for the cost of the losses.

The associated losses are frequently covered by homeowner’s insurance. Other contracts that might protect against these harms include:

  • Housing insurance
  • Insurance for tenants
  • Mutual insurance
  • Renter’s insurance
  • Liability insurance for businesses
  • Vehicle insurance
  • Liability insurance for dog owners
  • Homeowner insurance

If the owner of the dog possesses insurance, it is possible that this coverage includes a clause for bodily injury liability. The coverage amounts will, of course, change depending on how much insurance the defendant carries.

Contact Our Team of Reputable West Milford Dog Bite Lawyers At The Epstein Law Firm, P.A. To Discuss Your Case Today

It can be scary to file a lawsuit, but you probably have choices if another person’s dog causes you substantial harm. Learn how a committed West Milford dog bite lawyer from our office can assist you in pursuing your legal claim by contacting The Epstein Law Firm, P.A. immediately.

Dog Bite Legal Services in Areas Nearby

The Epstein Law Firm, P.A. has office locations nearby at:

Contact our Rochelle Park office today at (201) 231-7847 or our Englewood Cliffs office at 201-734-3763 for a free consultation.

West Milford Dog Bite Lawyers Answer Questions Regarding Dog Bite Accident Claims in New Jersey

Will my insurance cover my dog bite injury?

What is the deadline for filing?

You have two years in New Jersey to initiate a dog-bite lawsuit. The attack date is when the statute of limitations will start to run. Even if your claim is legitimate, the court may bar you from pursuing compensation if you wait too long to submit.

What Happens If Dog Attacks Cause Fatal Injuries?

The family of the victim may sue the dog’s owner for wrongful death if a dog bite results in fatal injuries. In certain circumstances, the family will be compensated for losses resulting from the loss of their loved one, such as burial expenses, loss of consortium, loss of affection and companionship, as well as other pertinent losses.

For wrongful death lawsuits, the two-year statute of limitations usually starts to expire at the time the victim passes away. To begin your claim, get in touch with one of The Epstein Law Firm, P.A.’s West Milford dog bite attorneys.


We want to express our deepest gratitude for the exceptional work you did to insure that our father’s unfortunate accident did not go unrecognized; my dear dad would have appreciated your professionalism, unstoppable work ethic and most of all your compassion every step of the way. Please know we have the highest regard and the utmost respect for you.

Deb & Joe

Thank you again for all of your help, support and advice. You’ve made a trying and difficult time much easier to deal with for my family and myself. You will never have any idea how much your efforts were, and will forever be appreciated.

F. D.