What Does California Law Say About Dog Bites?

Dog bites are far more common – and dangerous — than you might realize. In fact, each year insurance companies nationwide pay out over $1 billion in claims related to animal bites and one-third of the money paid out through homeowners’ liability claims are related to dog attacks. It may or may not surprise you that California ranks top in the nation in fatal dog attacks and tragically, children are most often the victims of serious dog attacks. Dog bite victims of all ages often suffer a lifetime of painful and life-altering injuries; including deep skin wounds, loss of fingers, infections and scarring.

California is tough on the owners of dangerous dogs. In California, there is no such thing as a “one bite rule” or disputed liability.  In other words, a dog owner is “strictly liable” for the injuries caused by their dog and is automatically responsible to pay for your damages. An experienced dog bite lawyer can help you actually recover that money.

What must the plaintiff prove if attacked by a dog

Under California law, in order to recover financially for a dog bite injury, your lawyer must show that:

  1. The defendant owned the dog,
  2. The dog bit the plaintiff,
  3. The plaintiff was lawfully on the premises where the dog bite took place, and
  4. The dog bite caused the plaintiff injuries.

California law and dog bites

Section 3342 of the California Civil Code clearly states that the owner of any dog is ‘liable for the damages suffered by any person who is bitten by the dog while the person is in a public place or lawfully in a private place, including the property of the owner of the dog, regardless of the former viciousness of the dog or the owner’s knowledge of such viciousness.’

Dog bites can be serious and leave long-lasting physical, emotional and mental scars. If you or your loved one has been injured by a vicious or dangerous dog, do not be afraid to stand up for your legal rights with the help of a skilled personal injury lawyer.

To discuss your rights as a dog bite victim and for a free consultation to learn about what you may expect to recover financially for your injuries, contact experienced dog bite lawyer Barry P. Goldberg today.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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