If you suffered injuries from a dog bite, you might be entitled to financial compensation. California is a strict liability state, meaning the dog’s owner could be held liable for your medical bills, lost wages, and other expenses resulting from the incident. At OnderLaw, our legal team is ready to represent you in your case and fight for the justice you deserve.

Dog bites often lead to painful injuries requiring emergency medical care. Even if there’s only minor damage, you still need to see a doctor for shots to protect against rabies and tetanus. You also might need stitches if the dog’s teeth punctured your skin. For some, a dog attack causes not only physical harm but also psychological trauma that can last long after the visible scars heal.

At OnderLaw, our Long Beach personal injury attorneys believe that every injured victim deserves an opportunity to pursue the available compensation to cover their expenses. You should not be solely responsible for your medical treatment when someone else was at fault for the incident. You can depend on us to tirelessly work to accomplish your goals and get you on the road to recovery.

For a free consultation and to learn more about how we can help, call OnderLaw today.

How Dog Bites Occur

Some people allow their dogs to roam free despite knowing they could attack others. Even if the dog doesn’t have a prior history of biting people, they should be restrained whenever they’re out in public to avoid a dangerous situation. Unfortunately, some owners don’t follow the laws that were put in place to prevent injuries.

The most common causes of dog bites include:

  • Playing – Dogs enjoy playing with other animals and humans. However, fun could turn into a dangerous situation if the dog becomes excited or plays too roughly.
  • Maternal instincts – Females instinctively protect their babies and might attack if they feel threatened.
  • Diseases – Dogs that are sick or in pain might attack if someone touches them without warning or pets a painful area of their body.
  • Fear – Most dogs will bite someone out of fear. Even if they’re not provoked, they might be on the defensive if anyone invades their space.
  • Startlement – A dog might feel startled and want to protect themselves from sudden movements or a stranger approaching them.

You could seek compensation for the injury you suffered if you didn’t do anything to cause the dog to attack. In a case like that, you should not be forced to pay out of pocket for your medical bills and other costs. OnderLaw could represent you in your case and recover the money you’re owed so you can heal.

Common Injuries Suffered in Dog Attacks

Some people don’t understand the severity of a dog bite. A puncture wound often isn’t the only problem you should worry about after a dog attack. Even if the injury is minor, you could suffer complications from infection if you don’t seek immediate treatment.

The most common injuries associated with dog attacks are:

  • Facial disfigurement
  • Scarring
  • Torn muscles or tissue
  • Puncture wounds
  • Eye injuries
  • Nerve damage
  • Bone fractures in the feet or hands
  • Neck and head injuries

Common medical problems resulting from dog bites are:

  • Psychological damage, such as post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Rabies
  • Sepsis
  • MRSA
  • Tetanus
  • Permanent disability

Some injuries become life-threatening. If an infection spreads, the doctor might have to amputate a leg or arm to save your life. Many accident victims end up with severe emotional trauma that lasts long after the physical injuries heal. Ongoing medical care is expensive and can lead to crushing debt. If you can’t afford your bills, that’s a significant source of stress. You have the right to file a claim or lawsuit for the money you’re owed for injuries that weren’t your fault.

Dog Laws/Regulations in California

Different states and cities have various regulations regarding dog leashes. In Long Beach, anyone responsible for a dog must use a leash less than six feet long, unless the dog is confined in an automobile, while in or upon:

  • A sidewalk, park, public street, improvement, or another public place or private property accessible or open to the public; or
  • Someone else’s property without the owner’s permission.

California follows a strict liability statute when it comes to dog bites. That means the owner is liable for any losses suffered by the victim if they were lawfully on someone’s private property or in a public place. Even if the dog doesn’t have a previous history of viciousness and the owner didn’t know of any viciousness, the injured party could still hold them liable.

Compensation for Dog Bites

Dog bites can cause severe injuries and lead to a range of different losses. Sometimes, these injuries are fatal. If you weren’t at fault for the attack, you could pursue compensation for the losses you suffered and any losses you will continue to suffer in the future.

Losses for which compensation may be available include:

  • Past and future medical bills
  • Pain and suffering
  • Lost wages
  • Lost earning capacity
  • Damaged personal property
  • Physical impairment or disfigurement
  • Loss of enjoyment of life
  • Emotional distress

Many dog bite victims know the dog’s owner. You might have been hanging out at a family member or friend’s house when the attack happened. If they carry homeowner’s insurance, you might be able to file a claim with that insurance company for compensation for your losses.

Many insurance companies offer liability coverage for dog bites. However, the policyholder must choose to opt-in if they want it added to their policy. There also might be certain restrictions depending on the breed of the dog that attacked you. For example, some homeowner’s insurance companies won’t provide compensation for injuries caused by a pit bull.

If the dog’s owner doesn’t have dog bite coverage or a homeowner’s insurance policy, you might have to file a lawsuit. Unfortunately, this can be a sensitive issue. The last thing you want to do is sue someone you care about, but that may be the only option if you can’t file an insurance claim.

Statute of Limitations on Dog Bite Claims

You must follow a statute of limitations if you want to file a lawsuit after a dog bite injury. This is a strict timeframe for suing someone who is liable for your losses. California has a two-year statute of limitations. That means you must initiate your lawsuit within two years of the dog attack. After the deadline passes, you could lose your right to pursue compensation through the court system.

Why Choose OnderLaw?

The Long Beach dog bite attorneys of OnderLaw dedicate our time and attention to each case we take. We know that no two clients are alike, and no two dog bite incidents are alike. We will get to know you so we can meet your needs and achieve your goals. We don’t make false promises or guarantee an outcome we can’t reach. We will provide an honest assessment of your case so you know what to expect throughout the process.

Our law firm received an AV rating from Martindale-Hubbell, a peer review rated service recognizing the top lawyers in the country. We also earned awards from prestigious organizations, such as the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, the Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum, Super Lawyers, and The National Trial Lawyers. We are proud of the reputation we’ve been able to build and strive to maintain that reputation.

OnderLaw understands the economic burden you might face following a dog bite injury. If you can’t afford your medical treatment, you probably can’t pay for a lawyer. We believe that everyone deserves legal services without running into financial problems. That’s why we take all cases on contingency. That means there are no upfront fees or costs. You won’t have to pay us unless we recover compensation. If we lose, you’ll never owe us anything.

With our 24/7 services, you can reach a dedicated Long Beach dog bite attorney at a time that’s most convenient for you. Customer service is important to us. You should be able to speak to a live person whenever you call. We are available any time, day or night, to discuss your case and answer your questions.

Contact an Experienced Long Beach Dog Bite Attorney

OnderLaw can meet with you for a free consultation to review the circumstances of the dog attack and determine your legal options. We provide personalized services and one-on-one attention to everyone who hires us. You will be our top priority as we work to reach a favorable outcome in your insurance claim or lawsuit. You will not be alone during this traumatic ordeal. You can count on us to remain by your side until the end.

At OnderLaw, we have a team of experienced and knowledgeable lawyers that will be your advocates. We can help you seek the justice you rightfully deserve so you can get your life back on track after your devastating dog bite injury. We’re not afraid to go up against insurance companies and fight for the money you’re owed. The losses you suffered shouldn’t be your burden to bear when someone else’s negligence led to your injuries.

If you sustained injuries from a dog attack, do not hesitate to contact OnderLaw for a free consultation with one of our Long Beach dog bite attorneys.