The aftermath of a dog bite or attack can be traumatic and stressful, making it hard to know what to do. A local dog bite lawyer can address your FAQs, allowing you to have common questions answered. These answers can give you a chance to learn more about California law and how it applies to you or an injured loved one. Many will accept your case on a contingency fee basis, meaning you incur no out-of-pocket expenses.
If you are represented by a dog bite attorney, they can help you understand what to do in the immediate aftermath of a dog bite. They can also explain your rights as the injured party, including how and when to file your lawsuit. Your legal team can also help you collect documents and physical evidence to build a compelling case file.
What Damages Can Be Recovered After a Dog Bite or Attack?
Understanding and documenting the value of your case is a primary reason to hire a dog bite lawyer. Dog bite compensation you can collect typically include:
- Injury-related medical care, including current and future medical, rehab, and therapeutic treatment and the costs of surgery to treat disfiguring injuries
- Injury-related losses of income, including lost wages, benefits, and reduced earning capacity
- Repair or replacement of your damaged personal property
- Ongoing physical pain and suffering, including loss of enjoyment of life
You can also sue for emotional distress after a dog bite. Compensation for your emotional trauma is determined by the severity of your symptoms. Your personal injury lawyer for dog bites will collect evidence that supports this and all other economic and non-economic damages.
Who Is Responsible for Compensating the Victim of a Dog Bite?
The state of California takes dog ownership seriously and holds negligent owners responsible for the actions of their dogs. Whether or not the dog was known to be vicious, according to CIV § 3342, the owner is financially liable if you or a loved one was bitten:
- In a public place
- In a private place
- On the owner’s property
Un Abogada de lesiones personales will explain how the state determines your status on the owner’s property—lawfully or by express or implied invitation. Identifying liability for dog bites is critical to your case. The best way to understand your rights and the owner’s responsibilities is to consult a lawyer in your area.
Is There a Time Limit to Filing a Dog Bite Lawsuit?
Knowing when to hire a dog bite lawyer is an important part of your case since the time you have to file your animal attack lawsuit is determined by the statute of limitations. In general, you have two years to file your personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit, according to PCCh § 335.1.
If your lawsuit is not filed on time, you could be prohibited from filing it at all. It could also be dismissed without ever being heard. Either outcome could mean you cannot legally compel the negligent dog owner to compensate you.
Dog attack legal advice includes an understanding of the filing deadline and any fluctuations that apply to your case. If, for example, the dog bite victim was a minor, the statute of limitations could pause until their eighteenth birthday.
Can You File a Personal Injury Lawsuit Without a Dog Bite Lawyer?
To recover damages, you have to prove the dog bite was the result of negligence. You can file your civil lawsuit on your own, but doing so can be complicated and risky. A dog bite lawyer can help determine liability in your case. They will also:
- Determine whether or not the dog was leashed
- Prove you did not provoke the dog that bit you
- Collect receipts and other financial documents
- Consult dog bite and other medical experts
- Deal with the insurance company and adjuster
- Handle all communication related to your case
- Assign an accurate monetary value to your case
Your lawyer will explain the legal recourse you have for your dog bite injury claims and fight hard for the best available financial recovery option for you and your family.
Can a Dog Bite Lawyer Negotiate a Settlement Without Going to Court?
Personal injury cases like yours rarely go to court. A lawyer can help you file your lawsuit but will also negotiate with the insurance company toward a financial settlement. To settle your case out of court, your lawyer will:
- Assess your current and future damages
- Examine the dog owner’s insurance policy
- Compile and organize persuasive evidence
- Draft and send your settlement demand letter
- Receive and review each monetary offer
The decision to accept or reject an offer is always yours to make. Your lawyer will explain the benefits of each offer and guide you toward a well-informed final decision.
What Evidence Do You Need to Prove the Dog’s Owner Is Financially Liable?
If you are represented by a lawyer, they will collect evidence that supports your right to financial compensation. To steer your case toward a settlement versus a trial, the evidence they collect can include:
- A police report, if applicable
- An animal control report
- Ay previous reports for the dog in question
- Photos of your injuries
- Photos of the location of the dog bite
- Smartphone and security video
- Declaraciones de testigos
- Expert testimonials
- Relevant veterinary records
Your lawyer will explain the importance of medical records in your dog bite claim and collect them from every medical provider and facility related to your treatment. They will also obtain a prognosis for the care you will require after your case is settled. This can include cosmetic surgeries to repair visible damage and rehabilitation to restore your physical health.
Get Help Understanding Your Rights From Our Dog Bite Lawyer
If you or someone you love was recently injured by a recent dog bite, our dog bite lawyer will help you seek appropriate compensation. Get common questions answered and learn more about building the strongest possible case for financial recovery.