California leads the nation in fatal dog bite injuries, especially in Los Angeles County. Finding an experienced Los Angeles dog bite attorney after an attack can make or break your case. In California, if a dog bites you, a plaintiff has the right to pursue compensation against that person’s homeowner’s insurance.
California is a strict liability state, meaning there are strict rules regarding dog bites. A lawsuit can still be filed if you are on a person’s property without permission. Unless you were in the process of committing a crime or the dog was used as protection from harm, dog bite representation is possible.
Please call our offices to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney if a dog has injured you. There is no cost unless we win your case. Call 323-238-4683. Free consultation.
Los Angeles Dog Bite Resources
Passionate Representation in Los Angeles Dog Bite Cases
At Bisnar Chase, we have achieved a 99% success rate for over 12,000 clients; we know how to win your case and get you the help you need to move past your traumatic experience with as little pain as possible.
Our team of experienced Los Angeles dog bite attorneys have represented clients who have been bitten by an array of different canines; every dog attack reminds us how a seemingly innocent, friendly animal can turn into a frightening monster in a matter of seconds. In some cases, a reason for the attack is never identified, and the dog has no previous record of being violent or dangerous. To learn more about why some dogs suddenly attack, read this article on dog aggression.
According to Dogbite.org, last year’s statistics showed 31 fatalities from dog bites. Specifically, Pit bulls make up about 6 percent of the total U.S. dog population and contribute to 71 percent, 22 of the 31 dog bite fatalities.
The Law Relating to Los Angeles, California Dog Bites
Under California California’s Civil Code Section 3342: “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.”
This means that the state of California’s “strict liability statute” dog owners are held responsible for the injuries and recovered damages caused to victims regardless of whether the attack occurred in a public or private place and whether or not the dog owner knew about prior instances when the dog had attacked. The only exceptions to such dog owner liability may be when a dog is provoked or attacked by a victim or when the victim was trespassing or in the process of committing a crime.
Seeking Dog Bite Damages in California
Dog bite victims incur major medical expenses. In many instances, the fees associated with reconstructive surgery may not be covered because insurance companies consider it to be “cosmetic” as opposed to a life saving procedure.
Dog bite victims can claim damages including:
- Medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Cost of hospitalization
- Rehabilitative treatments such as physical therapy
- Pain and suffering
- Cost of psychological counseling
- Emotional distress
- Permanent injuries and disabilities
Who Can Be Held Strictly Liable for a Dog Bite in Los Angeles?
Negligent dog owners can be held financially responsible for their actions in addition to facing citations or criminal charges. In addition to owners, caretakers of dogs can be held liable as well. However, they can only be held liable if they had prior knowledge of the dog’s viciousness.
Landlords can be held responsible in a dog attack case if the landlord knew that a tenant’s dog was dangerous and had the right to remove the dangerous dog from the property. Depending on the facts and circumstances of a case, there may be other potentially liable parties.
If you think you have a case reach out to our dog bite lawyers in Los Angeles for a free consultation.
In this video: Managing partner Brian Chase discusses who’s at fault in a California dog bite case.
Los Angeles Dog Bites on the Rise
There has been a recent increase in the number of dog bites reported in Los Angeles. In the past year, there have been over 1,000 bites reported, which is a significant increase from the year before. There are a number of factors that may be contributing to this increase.
First, the warm weather may be causing more people to be out and about with their dogs. Second, the city may have more dogs overall as the population grows. Finally, people may be more likely to report bites now that there is more awareness of the issue.
Whatever the cause, it’s important to be aware of the danger that dog bites can pose. If you or someone you know has been bitten, be sure to seek medical attention immediately. And if you see an aggressive dog, it’s best to keep your distance.
Our clients suffer from more than just physical injuries; the major trauma associated with an unexpected attack by a dog can leave lifetime emotional scars. Some clients experience terror when being approached by a dog or even hearing a dog bark.
Unfortunately, despite several organizations’ efforts to help prevent dog attacks, dog bites continue to rise throughout the United States, particularly in Los Angeles.
L.A. has one of the highest rates of injury when it comes to dog bites on postal workers. A law firm familiar with LA courts and dog attack cases is recommended.
Mail carriers and delivery personnel are at a very high risk of injury from a dog attack. Homeless dogs are also a problem in Los Angeles as they roam the streets looking for food. Most are scared, starving, and have been abused and will lash out. These dogs have not had their vaccines and can carry diseases.
How Bad Does a Dog Bite Have to be to Have a Case?
There are many variations of dog bites. Some can be extremely damaging and cause severe injury or death, while other dog attacks can leave a dog bite victim with severe mental trauma. A physical injury does not have to be present for a dog owner to be sued. Still, it helps to have strong physical evidence, such as stitches, lacerations, bruises, and medical expenses, rather than just stating severe mental trauma was inflicted.
Mental trauma can be severe as well and should never be downplayed. Being emotionally scarred by an incident with a dog or other animal can leave a victim with long-lasting and even permanent damage that can hinder their ability to live a normal life from that moment on.
If you think you have a case, let our Los Angeles dog bite attorney review your information and see if we can help you get fair compensation.
Major Trauma From a Dog Bite
Dog bites can cause major trauma, both physical and emotional. Physical trauma can include puncture wounds, lacerations, and bacterial infections. Emotional trauma can include fear, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that about 4.5 million people are bitten by dogs each year in the US. Of these, 800,000 are children under the age of 12.
The CDC estimates that 1 out of 5 dog-bite victims require medical attention, and approximately 33% of those bitten by dogs suffer injuries to their head or neck, many with major trauma.
Dog bites can also lead to serious complications, such as rabies and severe skin infections. That’s why it’s so important to be careful around dogs, even if they seem friendly. If a dog has bitten you or someone you know, it’s essential to seek medical attention immediately.
The Los Angeles area has a large number of dog bites each year. While most do not result in severe injury or death, they can cause significant and long-lasting damage.
To ensure that victims receive the compensation they deserve, it is essential to consult a personal injury attorney.
Why Would I Need an Attorney in my Los Angeles Dog Bite Case?
Dog bite cases can be very involved and sensitive. Who was breaking what laws, does the dog have a history of aggressive behavior, was the canine attack victim given permission to be on the property or where they trespassing?
Understanding the laws, rules and best course of action to take throughout the legal process can entirely benefit your case. Experienced lawyers spend countless hours acquiring the newest information and studying law to best defend you and your case. The ability to receive the best legal representation is always advised, especially in dog attack cases.
What Type of Compensation is Covered in a California Dog bite Claim?
Depending on the severity and type of canine attack case, your Los Angeles dog attack attorney can earn you compensation that can consist of the following:
Medical costs are expensive, and those expenses often exceed what insurance plans cover. In the US, there are two types of medical cost compensation. One is called “no-fault” coverage, which provides a predetermined amount of money for any medical expense without going through a claim process. The other type is “tort” coverage, which requires you to file a claim for reimbursement.
Pain & suffering
Pain and suffering compensation is an essential part of personal injury law. It is given to compensate for the emotional pain that the victim has endured. The amount depends on how severe the injuries are or how much the victim has endured pain. There are many different types of personal injury cases that could require compensation for pain and suffering. The most common types include car accidents, slip and falls, and dog bites. The amount given is determined by how severe the injury was.
Loss of future income
When an individual suffers a serious injury that prevents them from working, they may be entitled to compensation for loss of future earnings. This type of compensation is meant to cover the individual’s lost wages and potential earnings, as well as any associated costs, such as medical bills and rehabilitation. The amount of compensation an individual receives will depend on many factors, including the severity of the injury, the individual’s age, and career prospects.
Loss of companionship
In some cases, people may be able to receive compensation for the loss of companionship of a loved one. This type of damage is typically awarded in cases where the death of a family member was caused by the negligence of another party, such as in a catastrophic dog attack. The amount of damages awarded will vary depending on the relationship of the deceased to the claimant and the severity of the loss. To receive this type of compensation, claimants will typically need to prove that they have suffered a genuine loss due to the death of their loved one.
What Information do I Need to Gather About My Case?
If there was a personal injury involved in the dog attack, having documentation of the injuries, photos, and a detailed summary of the event including location, time, and how the attack began through how it ended.
Having to witness information is also very important, including eye-witness accounts of the attack, who the witnesses are, where they were during the attack, and their contact information. Any information regarding the attack including witnesses, medical costs, photos, documentation, and any police reports are important to keep handy.
What Does Your Firm do to Stand Out From Other Firms When it Comes to Representing Dog Bite Victims in Los Angeles?
Los Angeles has the highest number of canine attacks in the nation. Bisnar Chase will take on dog bite cases consisting of aggressive breeds, trespassing violations, and uncommon situations when other firms will not. Bisnar Chase also does not back down from the high volume of canine attack cases because of our experience, skill, and reputation in the courtroom.
We have successfully settled and litigated hundreds of canine bite cases in Los Angeles. Most PI attorneys do not go to court. We do. Winning your case is always our primary goal. Contact our Los Angeles dog bite attorneys for a free evaluation of your case and to review the evidence.
Dog Bite Statistics in Los Angeles
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that about 4.5 million dog bites happen each year to people in the United States, and 1 out of five bites will result in an infection. Children between the ages of 5 and 9 are most at risk for dog attacks.
Nearly two-thirds of canine attack injuries among children ages four years and younger are to the head and neck region. Also, statistics show that injury rates in children are significantly higher for boys than for girls.
A CDC study shows that Pit bulls and Rottweilers account for more than 75 percent of all fatal dog attacks. Clients seeking a dog bite lawyer have increased over the last decade.
Emotional Trauma from a Dog Attack
Experiencing a canine attack can be very traumatic, and can leave long-lasting and even permanent PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder), night terrors (suddenly waking in your sleep from extreme fear) and even Cynophobia (phobia of dogs).
PTSD From Canine Attacks
According to one of our clients, life after a canine attack is difficult.
“The moment I was bitten by the dog, I knew something was wrong. I was in a state of shock and my body felt numb. The sudden change from feeling nothing to feeling pain made me realize that there must be something seriously wrong with my body.
I had heard about PTSD from dog attacks before, but I never thought it would happen to me. It took me a long time to get over the incident, which still affects me today. But thankfully, with the help of therapy sessions and medication, I can live a normal life again.”
PTSD, or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, is experienced by many individuals around the world. Ranging from military, car accident victims, violent assault, animal bite victims, and many others who have experienced a traumatic event that is difficult for them to overcome emotionally and mentally.
PTSD is a disorder diagnosed in individuals experiencing symptoms for at least one month following a traumatic event, even though symptoms may not appear for several months or years.
Symptoms may include:
- Re-living the traumatic event through flashbacks and nightmares.
- Avoiding people, places, and activities with a lack of emotional stimulation.
- Difficulty sleeping, concentrating, feeling on edge, and being easily agitated.
- Feeling detached from other people, intrusive thoughts.
- Panic attacks upon the site of a dog.
- Irrational sense of constant danger.
Learn more about PTSD, treatments, counseling, and therapy, and get in touch with others who suffer from PTSD at ADAA.org.
Signs of Cynophobia After a Dog Attack
The most common symptoms of cynophobia are rapid breathing, feeling like running away or hiding from the object, and a sense of panic.
Just the thought or seeing a dog can trigger fears and anxious feelings. Typical responses are usually both physical and psychological. Some signs of cynophobia include the following:
- Panic attacks just thinking of dogs
- Freezing when seeing or in the presence of a dog(s)
- Avoiding friends and family who have a dog(s)
- Avoiding places dogs could possibly be present (beach, parks, running paths, etc.)
Dog Bite Victims who show signs of cynophobia and who have experienced severe emotional trauma many times experience the following:
- Social phobias
- Agoraphobia (fear of places and situations that might cause panic, helplessness or embarrassment)
Many canine attack victims seek treatment at an emergency room and some others undergo surgeries to repair bite marks and scars. A dog attack can also prove costly for victims because of the medical expenses they incur. Many are unable to work and earn a livelihood as they recover physically and emotionally from the attack.
Serious Canine Attack Injuries in Los Angeles
Dog attacks can cause serious injuries and wrongful death, depending on the nature of the attack. Canine attacks can result in significant bodily injuries. Some common bodily injuries sustained in dog attacks include puncture wounds, nerve injuries, torn flesh, broken bones, laceration, tissue loss, and internal injuries.
Individuals could be permanently scarred as a result of the bite marks. Amputations of limbs or fingers may also result from dog attacks.
Dog bite victims may also suffer life-threatening infections from the dog attack. John Bisnar specializes in canine attack cases in Los Angeles. He says seeking medical attention is critical to making a full recovery — even if the victim initially doesn’t think the bite is serious.
In addition to physical injuries, dog bite victims suffer severe psychological issues such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, anxiety, nightmares, and fear of dogs. Call 323-238-4683 to speak to our Los Angeles dog bite lawyer today.
Protecting Your Rights in California
If a dog has bitten you, you must take the steps necessary to protect your own legal rights. First and foremost, you must seek medical attention as soon as possible. Identify the dog that bit you so the owner can be located. Report the attack to local law enforcement officials. Make sure you take photos of the injuries. Save evidence such as torn or bloody clothing.
Approximately 57 million households in the United States have a dog, estimated at about 83 million dogs throughout the country. At an average of almost 4 million canine attacks per year in the United States, you should know your rights if you were or happen to be attacked and contact our highly skilled dog bite attorneys immediately. Read more about your rights as a dog bite victim.
Last but not least, you must contact a Los Angeles dog bite lawyer with experience. They will help protect your rights and ensure that the at-fault parties are held accountable.
Skilled and knowledgeable injury lawyers will work quickly to protect the evidence, locate all the parties involved and obtain a fair settlement in your case. It would be best not to give specific information to insurance companies about the incident.
Bisnar Chase Personal Injury lawyers have been taking on these cases for over 45 years, winning millions of dollars in settlements and compensation for dog bite victims. We have the best-skilled connections, the necessary resources to engage in expensive personal injury litigation, and a reputation that gives us the advantage in winning these types of cases.
If you have been the victim of an animal attack in Los Angeles, our Los Angeles dog bite lawyers at Bisnar Chase can help. Let us evaluate your personal injury claim and see how we can maximize your compensation.
Contact Our Los Angeles Dog Bite Lawyers
Call 323-238-4683 to speak with one of our Los Angeles dog bite attorneys. With a free consultation, we can determine if you have a dog attack case without any obligation until you are ready to be represented.
Our contingency plan allows you to be represented in your California canine attack case without financial liability until we win. We have 5 locations throughout California to be sure you have a lawyer near you when you need it most.