Who is Liable in a Dog Bite Case?
California imposes stringent laws against the owners of dogs who act viciously. You may be eligible for compensation if a dog has attacked you. The following is some information about such incidents and how you can approach a dog bite attorney Los Angeles specialist for a possible settlement if an animal bite affected you.
California’s Dog Bite Law
There is no gray area in California’s dog bite law. Section 3342 of the civil code clearly assigns responsibility to the dog owner in certain situations. For example, the code holds the pet owner accountable if the bite occurs on any public property or private property, even if the property belongs to the person who owns the dog. The state created the code to protect people who were victimized by dogs that the pet owners knew were capable of causing harm. The state of California also has a “one bite” rule in its dog bite cases. That means that the court can hold the owner liable the very first time the pet attacks a person.
Exceptions to 3342
A few situations may exclude the pet owner from taking responsibility for the bite. The first instance is when the victim was trespassing on private property. In other words, the law will not protect those who were in the midst of criminal or mischievous behavior.
Certain pet owners are exempt from the strict bite law. Police officers and military personnel are exempt from the statute if their dog bites someone while it is performing its duties. For example, the court will not hold the police precinct responsible for bites that the dog does during a chase or arrest in criminal activity.
The code does not protect people who provoke the animals. You might not be entitled to a settlement if you taunted the dog in any way. However, no one will hold you accountable for provoking the dog just by petting it or being friendly to it. Your Los Angeles dog bite lawyer will have to review the case extensively to tell if you can receive compensation for your injuries.
The statute only covers dog bites, not scratches or any other types of injuries. A dog bite lawyer Los Angeles firm can review the events leading up to the injury and then decide whether you can proceed with the case and obtain a monetary award.
The Logic of Negligence
The reason a Los Angeles personal injury lawyer can help you get a monetary reward for a dog bite is negligence. The law sees the owner as the sole responsible party of any actions that his or her pet does. The pet owner is the person who spends the most time with it, so that person knows its tendencies. That person is responsible for ensuring that the dog stays mild-mannered in its social activities and does not harm anyone. Additionally, pet owners must make sure that they walk their dogs with leashes and monitor them when they are outside exercising or spending time outside. All of those factors can affect the outcome of a personal injury case if you bring one with the help of an experienced dog bite attorney Los Angeles firm.
Monetary Rewards for Dog Bites
The money you receive for your dog bite injury can cover many expenses. The compensation can pay for the medical bills that you accumulated for the treatment you received in the hospital or doctor’s office. In addition, compensation can cover your medications and physical therapy. Furthermore, the funds can pay for the time that you lost at work because you were receiving care for the bite.
The first type of damages is called compensatory damages because it primarily compensates you for what you lost. The second type of damages that your Los Angeles personal injury lawyer can help you get is called punitive damages. Punitive damages are built to punish the offender for extremely negligent behavior. A seasoned Los Angeles dog bite lawyer can try to collect punitive damages for you if you have strong evidence that shows extraordinarily negligent conduct. For example, you have a strong case if the dog owner intentionally and willfully ordered his or her dog to bite you.
Contact an Attorney to Discuss the Case
Don’t allow a dog bite to affect your life. Contact a dog bite lawyer Los Angeles expert if you have been victimized by someone’s pet. You may be eligible for contingency representation, which means that you won’t pay a penny unless the attorney wins the case for you. That takes the stress out of the matter and gives you the motivation to move forward. Attorneys are waiting to speak to you about your injury today. All you have to do is call and set up an appointment.