Personal Injury Lawyer for Dog Bite Victims in San Diego County, Riverside County and Orange County
Dog attacks are more common than most people realize. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), “[a]bout 4.5 million Americans receive dog bites each year, many of which require immediate medical attention.” If you or your child has been bitten by a dog, you are not alone. Due to the risk of infection and permanent damage it is important that you see your doctor right away.
After seeking medical attention the next thing you should do is talk with an attorney. The medical costs of a dog bite can be staggering, but they can pale in comparison to non-financial losses like scarring and emotional trauma from the event
Rubin Law Office is a North County San Diego law firm serving San Diego County, Riverside County and Orange County, that provides compassionate and aggressive legal representation for individuals and families struggling to cope with injuries from a dog bite. In many cases I can get you compensated from dog owners’ home or rental insurance policy without ever filing a lawsuit – regardless of where the bite happened. If you were bitten by a dog, I can help you, call me at (619) 719-1087 for a free consultation.
What Dog Bite Victims Need to Know about California’s Strict Liability Statute
While most personal injury claims are governed by the law of negligence (which means you must prove someone else made a mistake in order to recover compensation), dog bite claims are an exception to this rule. Under California’s dog bite statute, dog owners are “strictly liable” for bite victims’ injuries. This means that you do not need to prove negligence in order to secure a financial recovery:
“The owner of any dog is liable for the damages suffered by any person who is bitten by the dog while in a public place or lawfully in a private place, including the property of the owner of the dog, regardless of the former viciousness of the dog or the owner’s knowledge of such viciousness.”
California does not subscribe to the “one bite rule”. Dog owners are liable regardless of whether their pets have a history of attacking people, and they must pay the full financial and non-financial cost of a victims’ injuries.
What to Do if You Have Been Bitten by a Dog in San Diego County, Riverside County or Orange County
If you have been bitten by a dog, you should take these steps right away:
- Seek Medical Attention – After being bitten by a dog, you should see a doctor as soon as possible. If your primary care doctor cannot fit you in, go to the emergency room for immediate treatment.
- Get a Picture or Write Down a Description of the Dog – If you have your cell phone with you, and are safely able to – take a picture of the dog and owner. If you or someone or someone with you can, get a picture of the dog’s license. Write down a description of the dog with as many details as you can remember. How big was it? What color(s) was it? Was it wearing a collar? Did it appear to be a puppy or an older dog?
- Write Down the Owner’s Name and/or Address – If you know the owner’s name or address, write it down so you don’t forget. If you are not sure who owns the dog, take note of where the attack occurred and what direction the dog came from. Taking a picture of the dog owner’s driver’s license or license plate will be helpful in identifying them later. If they leave the area before you can get a name, find out if anyone else knows who they are or where they live.
- Report the Attack to Animal Control – If you report the attack to Animal Control, they can investigate who owns the dog, examine the dog to make sure it does not have rabies, and will quarantine the dog and review its veterinary history. Animal Control can also investigate whether the dog has behaved aggressively in the past.
- Speak with a Lawyer Before Talking to the Dog Owner’s Insurance Company – If the dog’s owner reports the attack to his or her insurance company, the insurance company may try to contact you. You should not discuss the attack with anyone until you have received personalized legal advice from an experienced personal injury attorney.
Schedule a Free Initial Consultation at Rubin Law Office
To speak with North County San Diego personal injury attorney David Rubin about your dog bite case, please call (619) 719-1087 or contact me online. It costs you nothing to find out if you have a case, and you pay nothing unless and until I get you compensation.