If you or your child sustained injuries in an animal attack in California, you could face a daunting, painful recovery. Many dog bites leave permanent scarring and even disability. Psychological trauma is also common, especially for young victims.
Fortunately, California’s dog bite laws place liability for animal attack injuries on the shoulders of the owner. This means you could have the right to pursue legal action and recover compensation for your injuries.
A California dog attack lawyer can help you get justice and the compensation you deserve. At Silva Injury Law, Inc. our attorneys help clients in Monterey, Modesto, and throughout California. Contact us now for help.
The Risks and Dangers of Dog Bites in California
State Farm Insurance previously reported that California leads the nation in the number of annual dog bites. In 2017 alone, State Farm paid out almost $19 million in claims to animal attack victims in California. According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, one in five bite victims requires medical treatment for their injuries.
The Los Angeles Department of Public Health states that animal bites pose a significant threat to public health. These injuries can lead to severe viral and bacterial infections, emotional trauma, and even death. Mild injuries may consist of abrasions, punctures, and scratches. More severe injuries can involve crushed bones and worse, especially in children.
No matter how careful you are, you cannot always protect yourself or your children from an unexpected animal attack. If you or a loved one is injured, however, you can pursue legal action against the animal’s owner.
How California Dog Bite Law Affects Victims
California dog bite law is clear on who has strict liability for any damages that result from an animal attack. The law reads, in part, as follows.
“The owner of any dog is liable for the damages suffered by any person who is bitten by the dog while in a public place or lawfully in a private place…regardless of the former viciousness of the dog or the owner’s knowledge of such viciousness.”
In some states, animal owners get a pass the first time a dog bites someone. This is known as the “one bite rule.” Fortunately, California law offers no such consideration.
How the Dog Bite Laws in California Affect an Injury Claim
If you suffer injuries from being bitten by a dog, you have the right to compensation—with few exceptions, i.e., you were trespassing on the owner’s property or otherwise breaking the law.
If your injuries did not directly involve a bite (i.e., you crashed your bicycle trying to flee an attacking dog) you may have to prove negligence on the part of the dog’s owner. This might involve demonstrating how an owner failed to act reasonably to control the dog. A dog attack lawyer can assist you in this pursuit.
After any type of animal attack or bite, contact an experienced injury attorney as quickly as possible. Do not speak to the insurance company or provide any statements until you talk to your lawyer. Otherwise, you could jeopardize your right to compensation.
Talk to a California Dog Attack Attorney Today for Help
The experienced California injury lawyers of Silva Injury Law, Inc. understand how devastating a bite injury can be. We offer compassionate, aggressive representation, and we fight to get you the justice you deserve. Even if you aren’t sure you have a valid claim, contact us. We provide a free consultation to help you explore your options. Please call us or contact us online now to schedule a no-cost consultation and case review or to speak with one of our CA dog attack attorneys for help.