Visalia Personal Injury Lawyers | Accident Attorneys
Visalia Dog Bite Attorneys
According to dogsbite.org, more than 14,000 are hospitalized for dog bite wounds every year. The attorneys at Harris Personal Injury Lawyers, help dog bite victims recover compensation for their injuries. If you’ve been injured by a dog or other domesticated animal – or you know someone who has – reach out to us online or give us a call.
What Are My Legal Options for a Dog Bite or Attack?
In most personal injury cases, injured parties need to prove that someone was at fault to recover damages. However, dog bite cases are different: in California, dog owners are “strictly liable” for injuries that their animals cause. The relevant California statute, Civil Code Section 3342, states: “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 dog or the owner’s knowledge of such viciousness.” In other words, you do not need to prove that the dog’s owner acted negligently or was somehow at fault for your injuries: all you need to prove is that you were injured and that the attack occurred when you were on public property (or lawfully on private property).
This does not mean that your legal case will be a slam dunk, however: you will still need to quantify your damages. This is where an experienced personal injury lawyer can help.
Compensation for Dog Bites
The compensation you can recover for a dog bite injury depends on the specifics of your case, like the severity of your injuries. Generally, though, there are a few types of damages that you can recover.
- Economic damages (those that are meant to compensate you for losses you’ve sustained due to your injuries), and
- Non-economic damages (compensation for intangible losses, like pain and suffering and reduced quality of life).
Economic damages may include items like past and future medical expenses and lost wages. On the other hand, non-economic damages include items that are harder to quantify, like emotional distress and diminished quality of life that you suffer as a result of the incident.
To prove your damages, you will need to present evidence that you sustained substantial injuries and expenses as a result of the bite wound. Your lawyer will encourage you to gather your medical records from any doctor’s appointments you attended, along with physicians’ notes about your condition, your progress, and your prognosis. You will also need to furnish proof of any other incident-related expenses, like any lost income due to an inability to work.
If You’ve Been Injured, Don’t Delay
In California, a two-year statute of limitations applies to most personal injury cases. This means that you have two years from the date of your accident to file a lawsuit. If you think you might want to pursue damages in the future, don’t delay: Even the process of filing an insurance claim can take time, so it’s vital to act quickly.
At Harris Personal Injury Lawyers, we have recovered more than $300 million for our clients, a large portion of which has been in dog bite cases, and we can help you pursue compensation for your injuries. During our free consultation, we will evaluate your case and provide you with an overview of the next steps to take in pursuing the maximum amount of compensation for your injuries. With our history of success in dog bite cases and in-depth knowledge of relevant law, our team can guide you throughout each stage of your case.
Schedule a low-risk consultation today by calling 1-800-GO-Harris or by sending us a message online.