Long Beach Dog Bite Attorneys | Animal Attack Lawyers
Were you or your child attacked by a dog and seriously injured? The owner of the dog may be liable for any medical bills, pain and suffering, and other damages you have incurred. Depending on the circumstances, there could be other parties against whom you can bring a claim. If you need help navigating the legal system and pursuing the highest settlement possible, contact our dog bite attorneys in Long Beach.
We can help you gather evidence, calculate your damages, and fight for the compensation you need to move on with life. You won’t have to pay anything upfront for the consultation, and if you decide to hire our law firm for representation, we will handle your case on a contingency fee basis. Dial 1-800-GO-HARRIS today to get started.
Are Some Dog Breeds Excluded from Insurance Policies?
It is often the case that the financial recovery in a personal injury claim is limited to the available insurance coverage. This is because defendants usually lack the assets to justify bringing a lawsuit directly against them. When a dog attacks someone on the owner’s property, his or her home or renters insurance might cover at least a portion of the resulting damages.
Some insurance policies, however, exclude coverage for certain dog breeds that are responsible for a disproportionately high percentage of attacks that result in serious injury. Those breeds include pit bulls, akitas, boerhoels, chow-chows, Doberman pinschers, and rottweilers. Whether such an exclusion applies to your case depends on the language of the defendant’s insurance policies.
Not every insurance policy excludes the dog breeds listed above, and some policies exclude dog breeds that we haven’t listed. Our Long Beach dog bite attorneys can review the language of the defendant’s policies to determine your options.
What If I Cannot Prove the Dog Owner Was Negligent?
Most personal injury claims are filed on the basis of negligence, which means the claimant is asserting that the defendant breached the duty of care, and that this breach of duty was the proximate or actual cause of the damages. In most dog bite cases, however, a finding of negligence or intent is not necessary to impose liability on the dog owner. This is because strict liability applies to dog bite cases in the state of California. As such, you may not need to prove the dog owner breached the duty of care owed to you in order to obtain a financial recovery.
What Economic Damages Might Be Recoverable in a Dog Bite Case?
Economic damages refer to the objectively verifiable losses a person incurs due to a tortious injury. Such damages can usually be proven using receipts, medical documents, and financial documents. Under some circumstances, such as when a claimant is pursuing compensation for future medical bills or loss of earning capacity, it may be necessary to bring in expert witnesses to provide deposition regarding the existence and value of future economic damages.
In the state of California, dog bite victims may be able to recover compensation for the following economic damages:
- Past and future medical bills;
- Lost income;
- Loss of earning capacity and benefits;
- Home and vehicle modifications to accommodate any disabilities resulting from the attack;
- Transportation to doctor’s appointments;
- Domestic help; and
- Any other reasonable and necessary expenses resulting from the bite.
What Non-Economic Damages Might Be Recoverable in a Dog Bite Case?
While economic damages comprise the direct financial losses stemming from a tortious injury, non-economic damages refer to the subjective consequences of such an injury. California law recognizes that the intangible effects of a serious and traumatic injury can have a profound impact on the victim’s life—and being violently attacked by a dog is certainly no exception. Depending on the circumstances, dog bite victims may be able to recover compensation for pain and suffering, emotional distress, and loss of enjoyment in life.
Sometimes the spouse of an injured party suffers a loss of consortium, which refers to the loss of society, moral support, comfort, care, sexual relations, love, and companionship. The spouse of a dog bite victim may therefore have the right to bring a loss of consortium claim against the defendant.
Can I Pursue Punitive Damages After a Dog Bite?
If your Long Beach dog bite attorney can show that the defendant intentionally ordered the dog to attack you or acted with a conscious or willful disregard for your rights or safety, it may be possible to obtain punitive damages.
Discuss Your Claim with a Dog Bite Lawyer in Long Beach
Recovering a fair settlement after being attacked by a dog may involve an uphill legal battle. Our attorneys will help you fight for the highest compensation possible, and we’re not afraid to go to trial if the opposing party refuses to cooperate. Dial 1-800-GO-HARRIS or use our Contact Form to arrange a free case review.
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