Crestwood Hills Park in West Los Angeles has open spaces that make for great places to play with dogs. However, this can put many people at risk of getting bitten, which can potentially cost victims a lot of time and money in medical treatments. If you become a dog bite victim, know that you have the option to file a civil lawsuit and recover your expenses.
A Los Angeles Crestwood Hills Park dog bite lawyer from the office of Pintas & Mullins Law Firm can assist with your claim and provide legal counsel if you need it. Call (800) 816-0755 to discuss your matter with a team member for free.
Dog Bites Pose Several Health Risks
Bites can lead to severe medical conditions due to the bacteria found in a dog’s saliva. You can contract two dangerous infections: rabies and tetanus, which can kill you if you do not get vaccinated immediately. Depending on the dog’s strength, the bite can also result in crushed bones, torn ligaments, and damaged nerves and blood vessels. In some cases, you might even become permanently disfigured.
No matter the bite’s severity, immediate treatment is necessary if you want to avoid further complications. It will also prevent your medical bills from growing and causing more financial problems for you and your family. Be sure to document all the injuries sustained from the bite, as a personal injury lawyer can use the documentation as evidence to help you pursue a claim.
Bite Reporting and Quarantine Rules in Los Angeles
After the biting incident, you and the dog owner should notify the Los Angeles County Animal Care and Control or the Department of Public Health district office as soon as possible. Physicians must report dog bites immediately, regardless of the victim’s injuries and whether the dog is rabid. Meanwhile, PEN § 398 requires the dog’s owner or caretaker to provide victims with pertinent information within 48 hours of the incident.
Local authorities can assist in treating your injuries and investigating the dog and its owner. Reporting also helps them keep track of animal bites in the county to protect the local community better.
Once they get notified, Animal Control will have the dog quarantined for at least 10 days to assess for signs of rabies. If the dog is indeed rabid, the authorities will order it euthanized. Violating the quarantine, such as by letting the dog out, is punishable with a $1,000 fine or up to a year in county jail.
Dogs working in law enforcement are generally exempt from quarantine if they bit a suspect during an encounter. However, the police officers should report to the local health department if their dog behaves strangely afterward and have them examined by a public health veterinarian.
For a free legal consultation with a Crestwood Hills Park Lawyer serving Los Angeles, call (800) 816-0755
Dog Bites Cases Are Personal Injury Lawsuits
California views dog bites as a type of personal injury governed by CIV § 3342. Dog owners have total liability for the incident, regardless of whether the dog previously bit someone, or the owner knew of any previous history of aggression. The only exceptions are when the dog retaliated to your provocation or the victim trespassed onto private property. In addition, just as law enforcement dogs do not need to undergo quarantine, they do not fall under this statute if the bite occurs during a police operation.
If you win your case against the owner, they will have to pay compensatory damages for items such as medical expenses, permanent disability, loss of income, and psychological therapy. You can also recover wrongful death damages such as loss of consortium and burial costs if a loved one died from the bite.
As a personal injury claim, dog bite lawsuits must comply with CCP § 335.1, which sets a two-year time limit from when the bite happened. The court generally does not accept cases that miss the filing deadline. The statute of limitations does pause for some exceptions, such as if the liable dog owner leaves the state.
Working with a Los Angeles Crestwood Hills Park dog bite lawyer can help ensure that you can collect the right evidence to support your claim and submit your lawsuit within the state’s deadlines. Call Pintas & Mullins Law Firm to discuss your situation with a team member.
Los Angeles Crestwood Hills Park Lawyer Near Me (800) 816-0755
Checking for Proof of Negligence
Aside from the bite itself, the owner may have also demonstrated negligence in other ways that can help back up your claim. For instance, the owner may have let the dog run free at Crestwood Hills Park instead of keeping it leashed. The owner might also not have had the dog licensed or vaccinated, both of which violate state and county law.
A dog bite lawyer has familiarized themselves with local dog ownership regulations and can assist in investigating potential violations to help build your case for compensation.
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Our Attorneys Can Assist in Your Case
Dog bites can get extremely expensive to treat if they bring multiple complications. They can sometimes even lead to a loved one’s death. A Los Angeles Crestwood Hills Park dog bite lawyer understands why you would want to hold the dog owner responsible for their negligence and stands ready to offer guidance should you want it.
Pintas & Mullins Law Firm has handled thousands of cases—including dog bites, medical malpractice, and nursing home abuse—all over the United States for more than 30 years. Call us at (800) 816-0755 for a free case evaluation with a member of our team.