Fullerton Dog Bite Attorney
Dogs are some of the most popular pets in the United States and widely considered to be “man’s best friend.” While most dogs can be incredibly loyal and friendly pets, it’s vital to recognize the fact that almost any dog is capable of inflicting severe injuries to people. Dogs can also be unpredictable, and even dogs with no known history of aggression have bitten and seriously injured people without warning.
If you or a loved one recently experienced a dog attack in Fullerton, CA, it is crucial to understand the state laws pertaining to dog attacks and how to recover compensation for your damages. A Fullerton dog bite lawyer is a valuable asset in this situation, capable of helping you build a personal injury claim and hold the dog owner responsible for your damages. It’s vital to work quickly for the best chance of winning your case, and Chris and Frank have the resources and experience necessary to handle the toughest dog bite claims in Fullerton.
Why Should I Hire a Fullerton Dog Bite Lawyer?
Attempting to handle any personal injury claim without legal counsel is very risky and incredibly challenging. If you do not have any formal experience with the civil court system or any legal education, you would likely make significant mistakes in handling your own case, potentially jeopardizing your ability to recover compensation for your damages. You would also be forced to manage your case proceedings unassisted while simultaneously managing your recovery.
Working with an experienced Fullerton dog bite lawyer not only makes handling your case much easier but also significantly improves your chance of success with the case. Your legal team will help you gather the evidence you need to prove liability for your dog attack and the extent of the damages resulting from the attack.
Chris and Frank have years of experience representing clients in Fullerton and surrounding areas in the most challenging civil cases. We understand the uncertainty that follows a dog attack and the difficult questions you are likely to have about your legal options. Our goal is to help our client understand their rights and approach their case with confidence. We’ll do everything we can to assist you in maximizing your recovery from your dog attack.
Who Is Liable for a Dog Attack in Fullerton, CA?
California enforces a strict liability rule for dog attacks, meaning a dog owner is liable for any injuries their pet causes to others. There are a few conditions that apply to this law, however. First, it does not matter if the dog had any known history of aggression. The dog owner is liable for all damages their pet causes to others regardless of whether they had any reason to believe the dog might be dangerous. Second, the victim must have been lawfully present wherever the attack occurred. For example, if the victim was bitten by a dog while visiting the dog owner’s home, they must have had permission to enter the home. Finally, the victim must not have provoked the dog to attack. In the event the victim did something to intentionally provoke the dog, they would be likely to incur comparative fault for the incident and may lose their ability to claim compensation for their damages.
Dog owners are not liable for any injuries their pets cause to trespassers and intruders on their property. For example, if someone breaks into your home to burglarize it and your dog attacks the intruder, you would not be liable for the intruder’s damages. If you are unsure how to prove fault for your recent dog attack, it is crucial that you consult an experienced Fullerton dog bite lawyer as soon as possible to start working on your case.
Potential Injuries From Dog Bites
When most people imagine dog attack injuries, they immediately think of bites. Any dog can bite, and some dog breeds are capable of inflicting tremendous damage due to the force of their bites. However, dog attacks can potentially entail many different injuries. A bite itself may be very painful, but it can cause several serious effects. The dog could cause puncture wounds with their biting force, and if they grip the victim and thrash, they may rupture the skin, damage soft tissue, and cause nerve damage.
Dogs’ claws are also capable of inflicting severe injuries, like deep cuts. If a dog knocks a person to the ground, the victim could hit their head and suffer a traumatic brain injury. Broken bones and internal organ damage are also possibilities. It’s common for a dog attack to result in multiple injuries to the victim. They may face a very long and difficult medical recovery, and the experience itself is likely to be one of the most traumatic events of their life.
Damages and Compensation for a Dog Bite Case
California law is quite clear when it comes to the damages available in a personal injury claim. The defendant is liable for any and all economic damages the plaintiff suffered due to the defendant’s actions. In a dog attack case, this means the dog owner is responsible for all the economic losses incurred by the victim, which are likely to include:
- Medical expenses. Dog attacks are easily capable of causing life-changing injuries. The defendant in the dog attack case is responsible for the cost of all medical treatments the plaintiff requires. These medical expenses can include short-term costs, like hospital bills and emergency room fees, as well as any long-term medical care costs the victim incurs to treat their injuries and manage their symptoms.
- Lost income. A dog attack can easily leave the victim unable to work for an extended time, and the defendant would be responsible for the income they lose during recovery. If a dog attack causes permanent harm that prevents the victim from returning to work, the defendant would be responsible for the lost future earning capacity, as well.
- Property damage. In the event the dog also damaged the victim’s personal property, the victim can include these losses as economic damages in their civil claim.
Beyond these economic damages, California state law also allows personal injury plaintiffs to seek compensation for their pain and suffering. This may sound like it would be difficult to quantify in monetary terms, but there are several methods an attorney may use to calculate reasonable pain and suffering compensation for their client.
The first would be a “per diem” method that seeks a set amount for each day the victim spends in recovery, and this is most suitable when a victim is expected to make a full recovery in a relatively short time. The second is the multiplier method, and this is more suited to cases involving permanent damage. The attorney multiplies the client’s economic damages by a factor that reflects the severity of their injury.
Combined economic and noneconomic damages can lead to substantial recovery for the plaintiff. However, if the plaintiff is partially responsible for the incident in question, they lose a percentage of the case award. If you are unsure about the extent of your damages or how to prove the defendant responsible for them, it’s vital to consult a Fullerton dog bite attorney as soon as possible.
FAQs About Fullerton, CA Animal Attack Injury Law
Can You Sue for Minor Dog Bite Injuries in California?
The term “minor” is subjective. What is a “minor” injury to one person may be very serious to someone else. If you are unsure whether your recent dog attack qualifies for legal action against the dog owner, it’s wise to consult an experienced Fullerton dog bite lawyer as soon as possible to determine whether you have grounds to proceed with a personal injury claim.
How Long Does It Take to Settle a Dog Bite Claim?
Settlement is the fastest way to resolve a personal injury claim. The time required to complete the settlement depends on the parties’ willingness to negotiate. If a defendant disputes liability or believes the plaintiff’s claimed damages to be excessive, settlement negotiations may fail, and the case will proceed to trial. Litigation takes much longer to resolve and can easily require several months.
What Happens to the Dog?
If a dog bites and injures a person, the dog’s fate may be in the hands of the court. Usually, nothing will happen to the dog, and the dog’s owner will face liability for the victim’s damages. The owner may also face certain restrictions when it comes to handling their dog in the future. However, if the police or the judge handling the case believes the dog is a serious threat to public safety, they may order it to be put down.
How Much Will It Cost to Hire a Fullerton Dog Bite Lawyer?
Chris and Frank make our legal services accessible to those who need them most by offering contingency fee billing. With a contingency fee, you only owe legal fees if we win your case and pay nothing upfront for our legal services. Once we secure a case award on your behalf, we take a percentage as our fee, ensuring you receive appropriate compensation for your damages.
If you’re ready to discuss your case with an experienced and compassionate Fullerton dog bite lawyer, contact Chris and Frank today to schedule your free case evaluation with our team.
Fullerton Practice Areas
- Fullerton Personal Injury Lawyer
- Fullerton Car Accident Lawyer
- Fullerton Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
- Fullerton Truck Accident Lawyer
- Fullerton Wrongful Death Lawyer
- Fullerton Dog Bite Lawyer
- Fullerton Slip and Fall Lawyer
- Fullerton Pedestrian Accident Lawyer
- Fullerton Bicycle Accident Lawyer
- Fullerton Rideshare Accident Lawyer
- Fullerton Traumatic Brain Injury Lawyer
Actual Client Testimonials
“This is the best firm to go to. They will fight for your rights to be compensated. I have a loved one that used them. They treat you like you are one of their own family members. I highly recommend them. To be honest I wouldn’t use any other firm.” Jeff E.
Client Review: 5/5
Check out more reviews on Google!