If you have suffered a dog bite injury, you need to seek medical attention as quickly as possible. Then, count on our team to represent you. Lerner Law Injury & Accident Firm is here to be your advocate after a dog bite attack. While often referred to as “man's best friend,” a dog attack can also leave you with devastating injuries, some of which could impact you for the rest of your life.
A dog bite lawyer from our team would be happy to review your case and see if you are deserving of compensation.
Look at some important information regarding dog bites below, and reach out to us to schedule a free consultation after seeking appropriate medical care.
Coping with the aftermath of a dog bite can be confusing and challenging, and that's why it's crucial to have the right attorney by your side. An aggressive Los Angeles dog bite attorney can play several vital roles in your case:
Our team would be happy to review your dog bite injury claim. Let us take a look at your case and see if we can file a dog bite lawsuit on your behalf.
Based on the statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), around 4.5 million dog bites occur in the United States each year, and nearly 800,000 of these bites require medical attention. In California, which has one of the highest numbers of reported dog bite incidents, a variety of parties could be held liable for your dog bite injuries, so count on our lawyers to investigate your case thoroughly and represent you accordingly.
Both state and local ordinances govern dog bite laws in Los Angeles. These laws outline dog owners' responsibilities and the available legal options for victims.
Some states adhere to the "one-bite rule," where an owner is not held liable for the first bite their dog inflicts. However, California is not one of those states. Therefore, dogs do not get a "free bite" in CA before the owners are held responsible. Even if a dog bites you once, the owner could still be held responsible for the injury you suffered.
California follows a "strict liability" dog bite statute, as outlined in California Civil Code Section 3342. This law states that the dog owner is liable for damages incurred by a person bitten by their dog, notwithstanding the dog's former viciousness or the owner's knowledge of such viciousness.
Dog bite cases can vary based on the injury's severity, the attack's circumstances, and the breed of the dog involved. Some cases involve minor injuries that heal with minimal medical intervention, while others can lead to severe physical trauma, emotional distress, and even death. The right attorney can guide you through your unique situation and advise you on the best legal strategy to pursue.
Dog bites occur due to several factors, and a few common examples include:
Dog bite injuries can extend from minor puncture wounds to serious injuries requiring extensive medical treatment. These can include but are not limited to deep skin lacerations, puncture wounds, broken or fractured bones, nerve damage, facial injuries, and psychological trauma, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Following a dog bite in Los Angeles, there are several important steps you should take:
The first step following a dog bite should always be to seek immediate medical attention. This is critical because dog bites can cause serious injuries, including broken bones, puncture wounds, and infections; timely treatment is vital. Moreover, seeking professional medical care also provides a formal record of your injuries, which can be an essential evidence piece in your claim.
After getting medical attention, it is crucial to report the attack to the local authorities, such as animal control or your local police department. These authorities will not only help ensure the dog is handled appropriately to prevent further attacks, but they can also create an official report documenting the incident. This official report can play a key role in your claim, serving as unbiased evidence of the attack.
Proper documentation of your injuries and the scene of the attack is crucial when pursuing a dog bite claim. Make sure to take clear and detailed photographs of your injuries, the area where the attack occurred, and, if possible, the dog responsible for the attack. These pictures can provide a visual record of the incident and demonstrate the severity of your injuries, which can be invaluable in your claim.
Information about the dog and its owner can be a pivotal part of your claim. Try gathering details about the dog, such as its breed, size, color, and distinguishing features. Also, get the owner's name, address, contact details, and any insurance information they might have. If there were any witnesses to the attack, it would be helpful to collect their contact information as well, as their testimonies can bolster your claim.
Finally, contacting an experienced dog bite attorney as soon as possible is one of the most important steps you can take after a dog bite. A proficient attorney can guide you through the complex legal process, help gather necessary evidence, handle communications with insurance companies, and advocate for your rights. By engaging a lawyer early, you can focus on your recovery while they focus on building a compelling case on your behalf.
In most cases, the dog owner is the primary party liable for a dog bite under California's strict liability law. However, other parties might also be held responsible depending on the circumstances, such as property owners, landlords, or caregivers who were responsible for the dog at the time of the incident.
In California, the statute of limitations says that you have two years from the time of the attack to file your claim. This is stipulated by the California Code of Civil Procedure 335.1. This means victims have a two-year timeframe from the date of the bite to initiate a lawsuit. If they fail to file within this timeframe, they may be barred from seeking compensation. Reach out to us as soon as possible for a free case review.
Dog bite victims in Los Angeles may be entitled to several types of compensation.
Economic damages are designed to compensate victims financially for the tangible costs they incur as a result of their injuries. The categories of economic damages that are often applicable in dog bite cases are:
Non-economic damages are granted to compensate for the more intangible effects of a dog bite that don't come with a clear price tag. These often include:
You don't have to face this challenging time alone if you or a loved one has been injured in a dog bite incident. Our compassionate and experienced Los Angeles dog bite attorneys at Lerner Law Injury & Accident Firm are here to help.
Contact us today for a free consultation, and we'll lead you through your legal journey toward recovery and justice.
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