Why You May Need a Personal Injury Lawyer in Orange County: Dangerous Dogs and Bites
Many people have a deep love for dogs of all kinds, particularly their own. In fact, almost 90 million dogs are owned as pets in the United States, according to the American Pet Products Association’s 2017-2018 survey. While no owner ever wants to think the worst is possible of their beloved pet, the fact of the matter is that ALL dogs can be dangerous biters, particularly if the victim is a young child. Dog bites occur far more frequently than many realize, in fact, per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 4.5 million people are bitten by dogs each year. The rate of dog-bite–related injuries is highest for those 5 to 9 years old, with over half of dog-bite injuries occurring at home with dogs that are familiar to the victims. If a dog bite incident occurs, a personal injury lawyer in Orange County that is familiar with dog bite law can help.
According to the Insurance Information Institute, “California continued to have the largest number of claims in the United States, at 1,934 in 2016, an increase from 1,684 in 2015. California also had the highest average cost per claim at $76 million…the trend in higher costs per claim is attributable not only to dog bites but also to dogs knocking down children, cyclists, the elderly, etc., which can result in injuries that impact the potential severity of the losses.” What kind of liability do dog owners have in California? The basic dog bite statute provides that the owner is automatically liable for any injury or property damage caused without provocation. The applicable code (California Civil Code, Section 3342) states: “(a) The owner of any dog is liable for damages suffered by any person who is bitten by a dog with in a public place or lawfully in a private place … regardless of the former viciousness of the dog or the owner’s knowledge of such viciousness.”
Despite the disposition of the dog, an owner should never leave a dog alone with a child, especially an unknown one, as was the case in a recent dog-bite incident of a four year old girl dining with her parents in Carlsbad, CA. The owner invited the child to pet the dog, which the girl did, then the owner left the dog with her own daughters, at which point, the dog attacked the four year old’s face. This incident could be an excellent example of liability under the negligence law, where the owner is liable because they were negligent in controlling the dog. A personal injury lawyer in Orange County can help you determine if an owner should have liability for any dog bite a victim receives.
Contact the Dog Bite Claim Center for a review of your case. Call 949/861-2191 for a free consultation to discuss your possible dog bite lawsuit. We are experts in investigations and negotiating on your behalf.
9841 Irvine Center Drive
Irvine, CA 92618