Orange County, CA Dog Bite Attorney
Need a dog bite lawyer in Orange County, CA?
Of the 4.5 million people bitten by dogs each year, about 900,000 need medical attention. While only a few dog attacks prove fatal, bites to the face can require extensive plastic surgery and may result in permanent disfigurement. This is especially troublesome because most children who suffer dog bites are bitten in the face. Kids, often drawn to dogs, and older people less able to defend themselves are the most common dog-attach victims.
If you, a family member, or a pet has been injured by a dog, you should contact an attorney specializing in dog bite cases. Our Orange County, CA dog bite attorneys can advise you of your rights whether you have been bitten, mauled, or knocked over by a dog. You may be entitled to compensation for your medical bills, pain, and psychological distress.
Experienced Dog Bite Lawyers Serving Orange County
Masih Kazerouni, is adept in all forms of personal injury law, with a decade of experience dealing with dog bite cases and negligent animal owners. He and his team at Pro Attorneys can ensure your rights are protected. For a free consultation call (833) 776-3777. There is no fee unless we win your case.
California’s dog bite law
California statutes hold that dog owners are absolutely responsible for any injuries caused by their animals. Any victim is entitled to full compensation from the owner, whether the owner had reason to suspect the dog could become aggressive or not. That the dog had never shown prior viciousness or that the animal was restrained are not valid defenses. To force the dog’s owner to pay, all the victim needs to do is prove the defendant is the owner of the animal that attacked them and that the bite occurred at a time and place the victim was legally entitled to be.
Who is responsible for damages?
If you’re concerned that your filing a claim could cause bad blood between you and the friend, relative, or neighbor who owns the dog, don’t be. The dog owner’s homeowner’s or renter’s insurance company will pay your injury claim; the money won’t be coming out of your friend’s pocket.
When you hire Pro Attorneys, we will interview the animal’s owner and if need be, engage an insurance-tracing firm to determine with whom they are insured and the policy limit. This will ensure there is enough insurance to cover your treatment.
Dog attack considerations
In addition to assessing the cost of the physical damage that dog bites cause, an attorney can ensure you get compensated for other consequences of an animal attack:
- Scarring – The lawyers at Pro Attorneys can put you in touch with trusted plastic surgeons to determine whether there will be any lasting physical evidence of a dog bite and what procedures may be required to minimize the damage. This can increase the award to which you are entitled.
- Non-contact Injuries – Even if you avoid a dog attack, you could suffer an injury. Especially if you are older or physically limited, evading an onrushing animal may cause you to fall and break a bone, twist or sprain an ankle, or do other damage. The dog’s owner – not you – should pay the associated medical bills.
- Emotional trauma – The memory of facing down a vicious dog can have a lasting effect. Pro Attorneys can recommend psychologists who can evaluate you for anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, and other emotional issues resulting from your experience. Counseling costs would be covered in the damages you receive.
California Dog Bite Laws
California has specific laws regarding dog bites and holds dog owners liable for injuries caused by their pets. The key points of California’s dog bite law are as follows:
- Strict Liability: California follows a strict liability rule for dog bites. This means that dog owners are held responsible for injuries caused by their dogs, regardless of the dog’s past behavior or the owner’s knowledge of the dog’s dangerous tendencies. It applies whether the dog bites someone on public property or when lawfully on private property, including the owner’s property.
- Statutory Definition: California Civil Code Section 3342 states that the dog owner is liable for injuries caused by their dog biting another person. The law covers injuries resulting from bites, as well as other injuries caused by a dog’s aggressive behavior, such as knocking someone down or scratching.
- Liability of Dog Owners: In most cases, the dog owner is liable for damages resulting from a dog bite or other injuries caused by their dog. However, there are exceptions if the injured person was trespassing, provoking the dog, or was a veterinarian providing care to the dog.
- Comparative Fault: California follows a comparative fault system, which means that the injured person’s own actions may be considered when determining compensation. If the injured person’s own negligence contributed to the dog bite, their compensation may be reduced proportionately.
- One-Bite Rule: While California has a strict liability law for dog bites, it does not strictly follow the “one-bite rule.” Even if a dog has never bitten anyone before, the owner can still be held liable for the first bite under California law.
It’s important to note that each case is unique, and the specific circumstances and details can affect the application of the law. If you have been bitten or injured by a dog in California, it’s recommended to consult with a personal injury attorney who specializes in dog bite cases. They can provide guidance based on the specific facts of your situation and help you understand your rights and legal options.
Call The Dog Bite Experts at Pro Attorneys Today
If you or someone you know has been injured in a dog attack call an Orange County, CA dog bite attorney from Pro Attorneys for a free consultation: (833) 776-3777. Only by hiring an experienced, specialized personal injury attorney can you be assured you will receive fair treatment from the insurance company.