Irvine Dog Bite Attorney
Dogs are widely considered to be “man’s best friend” and are incredibly popular pets throughout the United States. Most people are fortunate enough to have only positive interactions with dogs, both their own and those belonging to friends, neighbors, and even strangers. Unfortunately, some people find themselves victims of dog attacks in various situations, often unexpectedly. While some dog breeds are inherently dangerous in some ways, any dog is capable of inflicting severe injuries on a person.
Legal Counsel for Irvine, CA, Dog Bite Cases
If you or someone you love suffered injuries in a dog attack recently in the Irvine, CA, area, you may wonder whether the dog’s owner bears any liability for your medical treatment costs and other damages. In California, a dog owner is strictly liable for any damages their pet causes others. While it might seem like proving liability in a dog bite case would be relatively easy, the reality is that innumerable variables can complicate any personal injury claim. Therefore, you need legal counsel you can trust to navigate the complexities of your case as effectively as possible.
Chris and Frank Accident Attorneys has a team of experienced attorneys serving clients in Irvine and surrounding communities of southern California. We understand the stress and uncertainty that can follow any personal injury and the many questions a victim is likely to have concerning their damages and the ability to secure compensation for them. Our goal is to provide peace of mind and reassurance to dog attack victims when they need it most, helping them compile effective personal injury claims that secure maximum compensation for their losses.
Benefits of Legal Counsel for an Irvine, CA, Dog Bite Claim
Attempting to handle any personal injury claim without legal counsel is very risky. Although technically it is possible to win a civil case on your own, doing so would be very difficult while managing your medical needs after a dog attack and your other personal and professional responsibilities. Moreover, even if you succeed, you could end up with far less of a recovery than an experienced attorney could have obtained for you.
The primary benefit of hiring an experienced Irvine dog bite lawyer to represent you is peace of mind. You can rest and recover from your injuries being confident that your civil case is in reliable, professional hands. In addition, our team can handle all preliminary motions and pretrial proceedings for you, ensuring you meet all court filing deadlines and other procedural requirements for your claim. This will ensure that your claim unfolds as efficiently as possible, unhindered by administrative red tape.
When it comes to your recovery, working with an experienced Irvine dog bite attorney is likely to yield a far greater case award than you could have obtained on your own, even after accounting for the cost of hiring your attorney. This is because Chris and Frank Accident Attorneys accepts personal injury claims on a contingency fee basis. If we accept your case, you will pay nothing up front and only an attorney’s fee once you win your case. The contingency fee will be a predetermined percentage of the case award, ensuring the client receives the bulk of the case award to compensate for their damages. Ultimately, you are most likely to win your case and maximize your recovery when you have an experienced Irvine dog bite lawyer managing your personal injury claim.
What to Expect From Your Irvine Dog Bite Attorney
When you choose Chris and Frank Accident Attorneys to represent you in a dog bite injury case, our team will thoroughly review the details of when, where, how, and why the attack occurred. You can rely on your legal team to explain the relevant California statutes that apply to your case and meet all procedural requirements with the court. Attempting to meet court filing deadlines and other administrative issues in your case on your own while recovering from painful injuries would be very difficult, and any mistakes could delay your case proceedings.
Working with an experienced Irvine dog bite attorney means that your claim can unfold as efficiently as possible and that you are fully prepared to face any challenges that it presents. Every dog bite claim will involve unique details, and the plaintiff needs to assess all available channels of compensation to maximize their recovery. You can rely on your Irvine dog bite lawyer to help you gather the evidence needed to establish liability for your damages and prove the full scope of those damages.
Most personal injury claims filed in California end in private settlement negotiations. When liability is clear, it’s typically in the defendant’s best interests to resolve the matter as efficiently as possible, and a swift settlement helps the plaintiff recover. However, settlement is only possible if both sides are willing to compromise on a mutually agreeable resolution. If settlement proves fruitless, the case will proceed to litigation and take much longer to resolve. Additionally, the outcome rests entirely in the hands of the judge.
When Chris and Frank Accident Attorneys represents you in your dog bite claim, we will help you gather the evidence you need to ensure your claim meets all applicable state laws regarding dog bite claims. We’ll then assist you in gathering the documentation you will need to prove your economic losses. In addition, California state law allows you to claim pain and suffering compensation. Therefore, we can help you determine a reasonable amount to include in your claim based on the severity of your injury and the long-term complications you face.
California Dog Bite Statutes
Every state upholds different laws pertaining to dog bite claims. In California, the state enforces strict liability on dog owners whose pets injure others. Strict liability applies as long as the victim did not intentionally provoke the dog’s attack or show aggression to the dog’s owner and was lawfully present where the attack occurred. Strict liability does not apply when a dog injures an intruder, a trespasser, or anyone else who does not have permission to enter the dog owner’s private property.
A dog bite injury claim is a type of personal injury claim, meaning that the statute of limitations for personal injuries applies to your case. You must file your dog bite claim within two years of the attack in question. This may sound like more than enough time to start your case, but it is always best to start working on a personal injury case as soon as possible for the best chances of success.
Commonly Reported Injuries From Dog Attacks in Orange County, California
When most people imagine the injuries possible from dog attacks, they immediately think of bites. Dog bites can be incredibly painful and damaging, but they are not the only injuries possible from a dog attack. A moderate dog bite can result in puncture wounds, soft tissue injury, bleeding, and possibly broken bones. More severe bites or a bite from a dog with a very powerful jaw can result in crushing injuries, and if the dog thrashes, they can tear the skin and cause severe bleeding.
Large dogs can also knock adults to the ground, potentially causing injuries upon impact. Small dogs can trip people and cause similar injuries, such as traumatic brain injuries, broken bones, and injuries to internal organs. The experience of a dog attacking and biting can also be highly traumatic, and many victims of these incidents experience extensive psychological disruptions from their experiences. It’s possible for the victim of a dog bite to develop an anxiety disorder or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) from their experience that complicates their life in various ways.
Many dog bite injuries involve more than just bites, and victims often face extensive medical treatment and a recovery process that’s very painful. Some victims develop long-term or permanent medical complications from their experiences. Prompt medical care is often required after serious dog attacks, and all victims of these incidents should seek immediate treatment to fully assess the results of their attacks.
How to File a Personal Injury Dog Bite Case in Irvine, CA
California upholds strict personal injury laws that allow plaintiffs to seek full compensation for losses caused by negligent and intentionally harmful defendants. You must have sustained a measurable loss or actual harm to proceed with a personal injury claim in California. Your Irvine dog bite injury lawyer will help you gather any evidence you need to prove fault for your recent dog attack, such as physical evidence and testimony from witnesses who saw the incident occur. Once you identify the defendant responsible for your damages and calculate the full scope, you can file your personal injury complaint to officially start your case.
Your Irvine dog bite lawyer can ensure that your case meets all applicable court filing deadlines. They will also identify unique challenges and opportunities in your case, potentially revealing avenues of compensation and other advantages you may not have uncovered alone. Once the court receives your complaint, the defendant is issued formal paperwork and given the opportunity to respond. At this point, a personal injury case will likely go one of two ways. Either the defendant can accept liability and agree to a settlement, or the defendant can deny liability, and the case will proceed to litigation.
Chris and Frank Accident Attorneys aims to help our clients settle their personal injury claims as efficiently as possible. Our team will help you compile a solid case that leaves little room for dispute, but if your case must proceed to trial, you can expect responsive legal counsel throughout all trial phases.
Damages and Compensation for a California Personal Injury Case
California’s personal injury statutes are quite expansive regarding the damages available to plaintiffs. For example, if another person’s dog injured you and you sustained measurable losses from the incident, you have the right to recover all economic losses resulting from the incident. Economic damages commonly cited in Irvine, CA, personal injury claims include:
- Medical treatment costs. A dog attack can result in severe injuries that demand emergency medical care, and the person may also need ongoing treatment to fully recover from their injuries. Accordingly, the defendant is responsible for all medical expenses the plaintiff incurs because of the attack immediately following the incident and those incurred in the future.
- Lost income. The victim of a dog attack may be unable to work until they recover from their injuries, or they could develop a permanent disability from the attack that leaves them unable to work. The defendant faces liability for lost wages and lost earning capacity the plaintiff suffers.
- Property damage. If the defendant’s dog also damaged the victim’s personal property, the victim can seek compensation for repair and replacement costs in their personal injury action.
After calculating immediate economic damages and anticipated future financial losses resulting from a dog attack, your claim could be worth more than initially expected. However, California law also allows you to seek compensation for your physical pain and emotional distress caused by the incident.
Dog attacks can result in very painful injuries, and these experiences are psychologically traumatic for many victims. If you suffered any measure of long-term or permanent harm, your Irvine dog bite lawyer could help you determine an appropriate figure to claim in pain and suffering compensation. California law does not limit the amount a plaintiff can seek in pain and suffering compensation, except for medical malpractice cases.
If a plaintiff is likely to recover completely from their injury, their attorney may seek a “per diem” pain and suffering settlement that awards compensation consistently until the plaintiff reaches maximum medical improvement from their injury. Alternatively, if the plaintiff developed a permanent disability from their experience, their attorney could seek a larger lump sum instead, calculated by multiplying the plaintiff’s claimed economic damages by a factor that reflects the severity of their condition. For example, a plaintiff who developed a permanent disability in a claim worth $300,000 in economic damages could seek compensation of one to five times this amount in pain and suffering to reflect the severity of their disability.
Dog Bite Injury FAQs
Q: How Much Is My Dog Bite Lawsuit Worth in California?
A: California state law allows the plaintiff in a personal injury case to seek full repayment of all economic losses and compensation for their pain and suffering. The exact value of your dog bite claim hinges on the severity of your injuries, the total economic impact of the incident, and whether you face long-term or permanent medical complications from the attack.
Q: What Happens to Dogs After They Bite Someone?
A: In most cases, nothing will happen to the dog after it has bitten or injured someone. The judge handling a dog bite case may impose various requirements and restrictions on the dog’s owner. However, if the court determines that a dog is unreasonably dangerous or if the dog has a history of multiple unprovoked attacks in the past, a judge may order the dog be destroyed.
Q: What If the Dog Owner Blames Me for My Dog Bite Injuries?
A: California enforces a pure comparative negligence law, meaning that if a plaintiff bears partial responsibility for causing the damages they are claiming, they lose some of their case award that reflects this percentage. If a dog owner claims the victim provoked the dog or contributed to causing the attack in question, the plaintiff could lose a percentage of their case award that reflects their comparative negligence. However, the strict liability rule for dog owners would still apply, and the dog owner would likely face a greater share of responsibility than the plaintiff.
Q: How Long Does a Dog Bite Claim Take to Resolve?
A: The timeline your case will follow hinges on the clearness of liability for the incident and whether the defendant is willing to negotiate a settlement. When liability is clear, and you have legal counsel advising you, it’s possible to resolve a dog bite claim within a few weeks. However, more complex or contested cases must be resolved in court, and protracted litigation will take much longer to conclude.
Q: Is It Worth Hiring an Irvine Dog Bite Lawyer?
A: It’s understandable to have concerns about the potential cost of hiring an attorney when you are already struggling with the economic impact of a serious personal injury. However, you stand to lose much more than you could save by attempting to handle your case alone. The faster you select and hire a reliable Irvine dog bite attorney, the more likely you will succeed with your personal injury claim.
Chris and Frank Accident Attorneys understand how painful and traumatizing a dog attack can be and the profound effects this type of incident can have on a victim and their family. If you are reeling in the aftermath of a damaging dog attack in the Irvine, CA, area, we can provide the answers you need to your most pressing legal questions. Contact Chris and Frank Accident Attorneys today to schedule your consultation with an Irvine dog bite lawyer you can trust.
Irvine Practice Areas
- Irvine Personal Injury Lawyer
- Irvine Car Accident Lawyer
- Irvine Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
- Irvine Truck Accident Lawyer
- Irvine Wrongful Death Lawyer
- Irvine Dog Bite Lawyer
- Irvine Slip and Fall Lawyer
- Irvine Pedestrian Accident Lawyer
- Irvine Bicycle Accident Lawyer
- Irvine Rideshare Accident Lawyer
- Irvine Traumatic Brain Injury Lawyer
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