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California Dog Bite Attorney | Injury Lawyers
If you or a loved one has suffered injuries related to a dog bite attack, you may file a claim against the owner of the dog or another party. Dog attacks affect millions of people each year in the United States and can lead to several medical concerns including infections, mutilation, scarring, and even death.
The dog bite attorneys at Davidovich Stein Law Group offer free consultations so that we can properly assess your situation, and advise you on how to move forward with your case. If you or someone you love has been attacked by a dog, do not wait to contact us at (818) 661-2420 to get your free consultation. We have a great deal of experience with and knowledge of the laws related to dog bite attacks and will be here to help you in your pursuit of the compensation that you rightfully deserve.
California Liability Laws
A dog owner, in the state of California, is considered liable if their dog bites another person, depending on the conditions of the attack. The primary condition for liability is that the injuries sustained by the victim were, in fact, caused by the dog bite. In order for a dog owner to be considered legally accountable for the attack, the event must have taken place in a public space. If the attack occurred on private property, the injured individual must be able to prove that they were on that property lawfully. Thus, if the attack occurred while the person was trespassing on someone’s private property, the owner of the dog cannot be held liable. Additionally, if the dog was provoked by the victim before the attack occurred, the owner may not be held liable. This is especially the case if the owner warned the person to keep their distance from the animal.
One stipulation of the liability laws is that the owner of the dog cannot use the animal’s history in their defense. For example, just because the owner claims the dog has no history of harming another individual does not mean the owner will not be held liable.
What You Need For A Successful Dog Bite Claim
There are 3 factors you need to be able to prove in order to have a successful dog bite claim. They are:
- The at-fault party was the owner of the dog
- The bite occurred in public or while the victim was lawfully on the defendant’s private property
- The dog bite resulted in the injury that provoked the claim
What To Do After A Dog Bite Attack
- Do not wait to seek medical attention. The wound resulting from a dog bite can get severely infected, and should be seen by a doctor as quickly as possible following the incident. If the bite is very serious, you should call an ambulance or get yourself to the closest urgent care center or hospital as fast as you can.
- Photograph the bite in addition to the scene where the attack occurred. Be sure to capture photographic evidence of all injuries, even smaller wounds and gashes. Try to get a photo of the dog as well.
- You will need to be able to recognize the at-fault animal in order to identify the dog’s owner. Since the owner is the liable party they will need to be located. It is typically their home insurance company that is responsible for handling your compensation.
- File a police report, as well as a report with your local animal control agency. Even if the dog is a stray, it is important to report the incident so that the animal can be located and future attacks can be prevented. If you have any information about the animal’s owner, be sure to include that in the report.
- Once you have filed the appropriate reports, gathered the necessary evidence and sought medical attention, you should contact a personal injury and dog bite attorney who knows the ins and outs of the California legal system. Without a lawyer, insurance companies try to take advantage of victims by paying them as little as possible, and not giving them the settlement they deserve. Your chance of success for your case can only be increased by hiring a professional personal injury lawyer who will advocate for you from start to finish, and help you identify all of the elements needed to build a strong case.
- Do not provide the insurance company with any information or signed documentation of the attack before you speak with a personal injury lawyer. Insurance companies are notorious for seeking the lowest possible pay out in events such as a dog bite attack. They will use any information you give them to try to lower the compensation that should be awarded to you. Oftentimes there are factors in a case that a person might not be aware of without the input of a lawyer. Before you let the insurance company convince you to accept a settlement, contact a lawyer who will make sure there are no loopholes or other factors that are not being considered. As soon as your seek help from a medical professional, and medical bills begin piling up, you should be compensated for those damages. An experienced lawyer will make sure you receive all the compensation that you deserve.
If you or a loved one has been injured as a result of a dog bite attack, you should be aware of the types of compensation you may be entitled to. An experienced personal injury lawyer will seek the following types of compensation on your behalf:
- Pain and suffering
- Past and future medical expenses
- Loss of income
- Exemplary damages
- Altered daily life
- Lowered ability to earn money
- Long term medical care for more serious cases
Sometimes, what may seem like a minor injury can turn into something that affects the victim chronically and in the long term. For example, a wound from a dog bite may not seem that serious initially, but it can later develop into nerve damage that can affect a person for longer than expected and sometimes for life. At Davidovich Stein Law Group, our dog bite lawyers will make sure you are compensated for future complications related to the attack.
To schedule a free consultation, call us at (818) 661-2420.