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Dog Bite Attorneys in Los Angeles

Dog Bite or attack accident lawyers at Custodio & Dubey, LLP

According to the Center for Disease Control there are more than 75 million dogs in the United States. Inevitably, man’s best friend becomes many people’s worst nightmare in many unfortunate occurrences across the country. Every year over five million people are bitten by a dog. Children make up more than 70% of dog bite victims and often suffer more severe injuries from these attacks. The costs associated with dog attacks are estimated at over one billion dollars annually.

What Should I do if I Get Dog Bitten?

Being the victim of a dog attack can be an incredibly painful and traumatic event. As grave as the physical damage can often be, the psychological toll can affect dog bite victims long after the physical wounds heal. If you have been the victim of a dog bite in Los Angeles and want to seek monetary compensation for your injuries, there are various steps you should take and give yourself best chance to recover for your damages. You should immediately:

  • Seek medical attention for your injuries and follow your doctor’s advice
  • Report the incident to your local authorities and animal control
  • Identify the dog that bit you and its owner
  • Take photographs of all the visible dog bite injuries, your clothes, the dog, and the location of the attack if possible
  • Contact an experienced and reputable Los Angeles dog bite injury lawyers to represent you and protect your interests

How Our Los Angeles Dog Bite Lawyers Can Get You Compensation

The Los Angeles personal injury attorneys at Custodio & Dubey, LLP are standing by to help you. With over a decade of experience in dog bite matters they have a long track record of giving their clients high quality, effective, and dedicated legal representation. Your Los Angeles dog bite lawyer will work with you to:

  • Determine all possible legal theories, arguments, applicable laws, and parties relevant to your case
  • Identify and locate possible witnesses and retrieve any other forms of evidence
  • Report the incident to animal control authorities
  • Obtain a dog bite incident report
  • Obtain relevant medical records
  • Handle all communications with the insurance companies and establish a claim

Understanding Dog Bite Injury in Los Angeles, CA

Under a traditional negligence theory a plaintiff must establish that the owner of a dog knew of his dog’s propensity to attack for the owner to be held liable. This in practice gives the dog one free bite before the owner can be held responsible. However California has enacted a statute which holds a dog owner liable for a dog bite attack even if the dog has never bitten anyone before. This is called strict liability. This statute in essence eliminates the “one-free bite” rule because liability is based upon ownership not on whether the dog had a history of viciousness or whether the dog owner had knowledge of the dog’s dangerous propensities. Under this California law the victim of a dog bite attack only needs to show that:

  • The victim was injured by an actual bite during the dog attack
  • The dog caused the injuries at issue
  • The dog is owned by the defendant
  • The dog bite took place while the victim was lawfully on private property or on public property

What is California Dog Bite Statute?

The California dog bite statute has eased the burden of proof for dog bite victims but it is very restrictive and in many cases of dog bites and attacks it may not be applicable. First the statute requires that there be an actual dog bite. Various dog attacks can be injurious without an actual bite. A dog can claw you, jump on you, or chase you and cause severe bodily and psychological harm- but these attacks do not trigger liability under the California statute.

The statute also shields dog owners from liability for dog bites on trespassers. However not all trespassers are criminals. Trespassing, being in a particular place without having the lawful authority or permission to be there, can be as innocent as a child going over into a neighbor’s yard to retrieve her ball, missing a “do not enter” sign, or unwittingly entering another’s property. Many dog attacks involving children occur when the child is legally a trespasser- in all these occasions the owner would be shielded from liability for the injuries caused by their dogs under the statute.

Another situation where the California statute is not useful is when a dog bite victim wants to hold responsible a party or individual that is not the owner. The strict liability statute only refers to owner liability. In many instances the dog owner may not be the only party at fault for the dog attack. The attack may have occurred while the dog was on a third party’s property, or under the care and control of a handler that is not the owner. To pursue a claim against caretakers and other potentially liable third parties the California statute will not apply.

What Should I do When California Dog Bite Statute is Not Applicable?

In situations where the California dog bite statute is not applicable your dog bite lawyer can still successfully pursue your case by:

1) Using the traditional negligence standard,

2) Establishing a claim for negligent handling of the dog,

3) Pursuing a claim under premises liability

4) Identifying municipal and local codes that were violated such as dangerous breed bans and dog leash requirements to invoke negligence per se.

The Center for Disease control lists the dog population in the United States at more than 75 million. These dogs serve a multitude of functions as pets and service animals, including providing companionship, safety and medical alerts to those who love them.

At Custodio & Dubey, LLP we have represented dog bite injury victims for over two decades of combined legal practice, which allows us to state with surety that not all dogs are harmless. Some can, and have, caused severe injuries. When injuries occur, our dog bite attorneys in Los Angeles can help you hold the owner responsible for their pet’s misbehavior.

US Dog Bite Statistics

For those who have suffered from a dog attack, the overall love for dogs as pets and guidance providers can be overshadowed by the staggering statistics accounting for the injuries sustained by the public.

  • Around 1,000 people in the US require emergency care and treatment for serious dog bite injuries each day
  • Over 9,500 individuals are hospitalized for dog bite injuries annually in the US
  • Nearly one in five bites becomes infected
  • Approximately 4.5 million dog bites occur annually in the US
  • Children are majority victims, accounting for 70% of all dog bites in the US
  • Dog attacks account for over $1 billion annually in the US

The severity of dog bite injuries can lead to long-term medical care, lost wages and emotional trauma. Our Los Angeles dog bite attorneys can help you position your claim to receive financial recovery that will assist in those costs going forward.

The Aftermath of Dog Bites

The pain and trauma associated with dog bites can lead to shock and confusion. No matter the injuries sustained, whether they appear superficial or extraordinary, it is important to seek medical care right away. Getting the medical attention you deserve can keep a number of infections and K-9 spread diseases at bay while creating a worthy record to substantiate your claim going forward.

To help build a case on your behalf, after a dog attack occurs:

  • Seek medical attention for your injuries right away
  • Report the attack to animal control and the local authorities
  • Identify the dog that bit you and its owner
  • Record images or videos of all injuries, and clothing worn during the attack
  • Document the attack location
  • Preserve any evidence associated with the attack
  • Note any witnesses at the scene, and record their testimony
  • Contact an experienced and reputable personal injury attorney to represent you and protect your interests

The Los Angeles personal injury attorneys at Custodio & Dubey, LLP can help you understand your legal rights while determining the legal course of your case and the expectations associated with full financial recovery.

Free Consultations Reveal Case Details

If you or a loved one has suffered from dog bites, our attorneys are available 24/7 to provide exceptional legal advice on how to move forward with your case.

During your free consultation, our accomplished lawyers will:

  • Determine all possible legal angles associated with your attack
  • Identify, locate and interview possible witnesses
  • Retrieve physical forms of evidence
  • Report the incident to the proper authorities
  • Obtain a dog attack/bite incident report
  • Obtain relevant medical records
  • Handle all communications with the insurance companies
  • Establish a legal claim on your behalf

The Law Is on Your Side

In these dog bite cases, the law is on your side.

California Dog Bite Law

Under the California strict liability law the proof of burden must show:

  • An actual dog bite occurred during the attack (scratches and claw marks do not apply)
  • The injuries outlined in the claim were caused by the dog
  • The dog is owned by the defendant
  • The dog bite took place while the victim was lawfully on private property or on public property

Exceptions Still Have a Strategy

In situations where the California statute is not applicable, our attorneys can still  successfully pursue your case by:

  • Using the traditional negligence standard associated with dog bites
  • Establishing a claim for negligent handling of the dog
  • Pursuing a claim under premises liability
  • Identifying municipal and local codes that were violated, including dangerous breed bans and dog leash requirements

Our experienced Los Angeles dog bite attorneys will recognize and handle the complexities of dog attack laws, and form the proper strategy for your case.

Accomplished Attorneys Producing Results

If you or a loved one has suffered a personal injury from a K-9 attack, contact our accomplished dog bite attorneys in Los Angeles, CA today at (213) 785-2909 to schedule a free consultation. At Custodio & Dubey, LLP we are available 24/7 to help provide results for your legal needs right away.

Hire! Los Angeles Dog Bite Attorneys at Custodio & Dubey, LLP

An experienced Los Angeles dog bite attorney will be able to recognize and handle the complexities of dog attack laws and form the proper strategy for your case.

Contact the law firm of Custodio & Dubey, LLP in Los Angeles for a free, no obligation consultation to evaluate your case and protect your rights. Call them as soon as possible toll free at (213) 785-2909. You can also fill out our online consultation form and an Los Angeles dog bite lawyer will contact you as soon as possible.

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