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Dog Bites

Dog Bite Lawyer in Martinez, Rocklin, Lincoln & Santa Paula

If you’re a dog owner in California, it’s important to understand the state’s strict liability laws regarding a pet owner’s responsibilities for dog bite injuries.  When an injury victim sues a dog owner for damages, it doesn’t matter if they knew whether the animal had been vicious or not in the past.  Therefore, they cannot argue about not knowing if the dog was dangerous or that they took certain measures to ensure that others would not be attacked by the animal in Rocklin, Martinez, Santa Paula, and Lincoln.

However, the BL Personal Injury Attorneys knows the law is not without limitations.  Dog owners are strictly liable but only when the injured individual:

  • Was Bitten By The Animal In Question
  • Was In A Public Place Or Was Legally In A Private Setting When They Were Bitten

California Civil Code § 3342 defines “legally in a private place” as any individual that is performing a legal duty such as a Post Office employee that delivers mail.  Furthermore, injury victims cannot sue “if they were bitten by police or military dogs that were either doing law enforcement work or defending themselves against annoying or provocative behavior.”  Even if the animal grabs you with its teeth, the court could still count that as a dog bite, even if their teeth don’t puncture the skin.

When is a Dog considered dangerous?

These strict liability laws apply to any dog regardless of its history.  However, another law holds dog owners personally responsible for taking reasonable measures to prevent their animal(s) from attacking someone in the future.  This includes any dogs that have a history of biting people.  According to California Civil Code § 3342.5, a dog will be considered potentially dangerous if:

  • It bit someone without provocation and the injury wasn’t severe
  • It displays aggressive behavior when not on its property, thereby forcing the person who is being threatened to defend themselves
  • It injured or killed another domestic animal twice within the past 3 years

There are other laws and statutes that apply to vicious dogs that have injured or killed another animal or person as well as criminal charges that may apply in these situations.  If you or a loved one has been seriously injured and/or disfigured as a result of a dog bite, our personal injury lawyers are skilled at interpreting California’s dog bite laws and will help you get the compensation you deserve.

We understand that injuries can be minor scratches to severe mauling and attack which might need cosmetic surgeries. Thus, the variance in the level of injuries that you have sustained decides the amount of compensation that you might be liable for. As per the injury law, severe to catastrophic injuries require the longest treatment and associated surgeries and that is why they are eligible for a higher amount of compensation in Rocklin, Martinez, Santa Paula, Lincoln.

We are a team of compassionate lawyers that can help you with your claim, procedures, so don’t hesitate to call us. For more information or to schedule a FREE consultation, contact the BL Personal Injury Attorneys today.

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