Dog attacks and bites are relatively common, with an estimated 4.5 million dog bites occurring each year in the U.S., according to the Center for Disease Control (CDC). Of these incidents, about 750,000 result in victims seeking medical attention and more than 350,000 dog bite victims require emergency treatment. Sadly, the majority of dog bite victims tend to be children.
In California, people who are attacked or bit by dogs may take legal action against the dog’s owner. At Torem & Associates, we understand how to navigate dog bite injury claims—and how to win. We believe that irresponsible dog owners should be held accountable for their negligence and that you shouldn’t have to suffer the painful, distressing, and costly consequences of a dog owner’s carelessness on your own. Our Fresno dog bite attorneys can help you clearly understand your legal options; we are prepared to pursue the full, fair compensation you are owed for your injuries and losses.
Call (888) 500-5000 or fill out and submit an online contact form to request a free, confidential consultation with a member of our team.
Understanding California’s Strict Liability Law for Dog Bites
Unlike many other states that follow a “one bite” rule that essentially forces a victim to prove the owner had knowledge of or should have had knowledge of their dog’s aggressive tendencies, California follows the rule of strict liability. Strict liability law states that the owner of a dog is liable if their dog bites or otherwise injures someone—even if the owner did not have prior knowledge of the dog’s aggression. This also means that an owner can be held liable regardless of whether or not he/she took precautions to prevent the injury.
There are certain limits to the strict liability law. In order to pursue compensation for a dog bite, you must show that:
- You were bitten by the dog and this caused you some form of physical and/or emotional injury
- You were lawfully on private property or on public property when the bite occurred
- The dog in question is not a police or military dog acting in the line of duty
The rule of pure comparative negligence often comes into play for dog bite injuries. Under this rule, you may be found partially liable for the dog bite/attack if you are found to have provoked the dog or “voluntarily taken a risk of injury.” Furthermore, if you were not lawfully on private property during the time you were bitten, you may not be able to pursue a claim.
Call Our Office at (888) 500-5000 for a Free Consultation
Dog bite cases can be incredibly complex and are often difficult to navigate on your own. It is always best to speak with an experienced attorney about your various legal rights and options. At Torem & Associates, we have more than three decades of legal experience. Our dog bite lawyers in Fresno have handled serious cases involving unprovoked attacks, dangerous dogs, and more. We are available to assist you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and can even help you locate a physician if needed.
Schedule a Complimentary Case Evaluation Call our office at (888) 500-5000. Se habla español.