Statute of Limitations for Dog Bite Cases
Dog bites happen every single day. While you may not be sure if you want to press charges right away, it’s important that you understand that there is a statute of limitations that applies in the great state of California. All lawsuits must be filed by your Los Angeles personal injury lawyer within two years from the date that bite occurred. Otherwise, you will give up your right to seek compensation for the injuries that you sustained from the dog bite.
You can specifically find the California dog bite statute in Section 3342 of the California Civil Code if you want to learn more specifics about it. California is considered a strict liability statute on this matter. You can seek damages to help compensate you for the bite, trauma, and injuries that you received. However, the dog must have bitten you on public property or on private property that you were lawfully allowed on.
In some very rare circumstance, you may find that your dog bite lawyer Los Angeles may be able to get the statute of limitations extended. This would typically only be allowed if certain circumstances of the case were out of the control of the injured party. For example, if the dog owner was in jail, then the court may allow you to extend the statute of limitations so you can file your lawsuit.
If you’re bitten by a dog and are unable to identify the owner, that doesn’t allow for an extension of the statute of limitations. The two year period from the date of the bite is considered an adequate amount of time for you and your Los Angeles dog bite lawyer to identify the dog owner. If you’re unable to do so, then you simply will give up your right to file suit once it has been over two full years from the date of the dog bite.
Any dog bite attorney Los Angeles will tell you that you’ll want to wait to file a lawsuit until you have all the pieces to your story. This means understanding your injury diagnosis and treatment needs. You don’t want to file suit and then find out, later on, you have more severe injuries than you thought. Since you can only rightfully sue the dog owner one time for the bite, you want to make sure that your claim for damages will cover all of your medical and trauma-related costs.