Millions of Dog Bites Occur Each Year
While dogs are generally loving and wonderful animals, a dog bite can lead to serious and painful injuries and, in some cases, can be fatal. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), each year approximately 4.5 million dog bites occur in the United States. Over half of these bites take place at a home with dogs that are familiar to their victims. The CDC also reports that among children, dog bite injuries occur most often in kids aged five to nine, and when a child is bitten, he or she is more likely to require medical attention. Getting bitten by a dog can be a painful and traumatic experience. While the first thing you should do when you or your child suffers a dog bite is to seek treatment from a healthcare professional, you should also contact a Los Angeles dog bite lawyer as soon as possible. Most states, including California, have specific laws addressing the liability of dog owners when a dog bite occurs. Because these laws can be confusing to navigate on your own, claims involving dog bites and dog attacks are best handled by a personal injury attorney experienced in representing dog bite victims.
California’s Dog Bite Statute
California imposes strict liability on dog owners for damages suffered by dog bite victims. Section 3342(a) of the California Civil Code provides that dog owners are liable when their dogs bite an individual who is “in a public place or lawfully in a private place, including the property of the owner of the dog.” Under California law, it does not matter whether the dog has acted violently before or if the dog owner had any knowledge of the dog’s viciousness. When a dog bites a person, the dog owner will be automatically responsible for paying any damages the victim suffers as a result of the attack.
A Dog Bite Lawyer in Los Angeles Can Help You Collect Damages
If you have suffered a dog attack, a Los Angeles dog bite attorney can help you take the right steps to ensure that you receive full financial compensation under the law. Your attorney will explain all remedies that may be available, including the following types of damages:
- Past and Future Medical Expenses
- Loss of Past and Future Income
- Loss of Earning Capacity
- Emotional Distress
- Past and Future Pain and Suffering
- Loss of Enjoyment of Life
- Punitive Damages
- Additional Damages in Wrongful Death Cases
If you or someone you care about has been bitten by a dog in Los Angeles or anywhere else, one of the most important things you can do is to discuss your case with a qualified dog bite attorney. Often, the parties responsible for your injuries will try to deny liability for your damages and suffering. An experienced personal injury team, such as the attorneys at West Coast Trial Lawyers, will take all of the actions necessary to hold these parties accountable so that you can collect the monetary compensation you rightfully deserve. For more information or to schedule a consultation, please visit www.westcoasttriallawyers.com or contact us at (888) 539-9582 We are here to help.