If a suffered a dog bite or other injuries due to a dog attack, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries from the dog owner and other liable parties under dog bite laws in Virginia. However, you may have to go up against the negligent party’s insurance company to reach a fair claim settlement. One way to resolve disputes about their liability to pay you is to hire an expert witness.
Expert Witnesses Helpful in Dog Bite Cases
An expert witness is someone who has expertise in a particular field due to their education, training, and experience. They can provide vital evidence to help you prove your case at a jury trial and to resolve disputes with the insurance company.
Expert witnesses are not always necessary in dog bite claims. The ones you could need will depend on how you were attacked, the injuries you suffered, and the arguments being raised by the insurance company to deny or reduce your claim. Types of experts that you may need include:
- Dog experts. A veterinarian or dog breeder may be needed to explain how the breed of dog that attacked you acts, how they were bred, and their history of attacking others. This can help you prove that the owner knew or should have known that their pet was dangerous or aggressive when you were bitten.
- Animal control officer. If the dog that attacked you bit other victims in the past, you may need the testimony of a local animal control officer to establish this and the dog’s viciousness.
- Medical doctor. You will need a physician as an expert witness to prove the seriousness of your injuries, the treatments you will need, and your prognosis for recovering from them.
- Vocational expert. If you suffer long-term injuries that will affect the types of work you can do or cause you to become permanently disabled, you may need to hire a vocational expert to explain why you can no longer work or what jobs you are able to do.
- Economic expert. You may be entitled to future medical expenses, wage losses, and lost earning capacity damages if you will not fully recover from your injuries. An economic expert can establish the amount of damages you should receive in your settlement.
How to Know If You Need an Expert Witness
Determining whether you need an expert witness and which ones to use can be complicated. You need the assistance of an experienced premises liability attorney to determine if hiring an expert witness will help you win your case. They will also have a network of experts who have the expertise you need and who can explain their findings in a way the jury can understand.
Were you or a family member injured in a dog attack in Virginia Beach or Norfolk? Call our Norfolk office or fill out our online form to learn about your options and how our skilled premises liability lawyers can help you.