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Dogs bite for several reasons. Even calm breeds like Labradors can attack because they’ve been startled and feel scared or threatened. Some dogs might bite when unwell or when protecting their puppies, food, or prized toys.

Yet, taking the necessary precautions to reduce the risk of dog attacks doesn’t prevent over 4.5 million reported dog bites annually, cites the American Veterinary Medical Association. If another person’s dog has bitten you, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. You need a dog bite injury attorney to present your case in court and negotiate damages with insurance companies.

Why Does a Dog Bite Case Need Legal Representation?

An injury from a dog bite should never be taken lightly, especially if you don’t know if the canine has been vaccinated against rabies. When your skin is broken during a dog attack, the wound can introduce harmful bacteria into the body and cause grave, fatal infections if left untreated. All dog bite wounds should be monitored for signs of nerve or muscle damage, rabies, and more.

This is because dogs carry bacteria such as staphylococcus, Pasteurella, and capnocytophaga, which can increase the risk of infection, particularly in people with weakened immune systems. A deep bite from a large dog can result in broken or fractured bones and lacerations that require immediate emergency treatment. Rabies is a life-threatening viral condition that affects the brain and spinal cord. Left untreated, it can have fatal consequences within days of infection.

Of the 4.7 million dog bites each year in the United States, they result in fatalities among young children. If you suspect a rabid dog has bitten you with signs such as foaming at the mouth and acting erratically, consider getting a rabies vaccine. Depending on the severity of the attack, these injuries may require costly medical assistance. This is why you should opt for a personal injury attorney who can take on insurance companies and help you seek compensation.

What Is the Role of a Dog Bite Attorney?

The role and responsibilities of a dog bite injury lawyer are to help individuals seeking damages for their injuries. A dog bite injury attorney is conversant with state laws regulating dog bites and knows how to negotiate a fair settlement for their clients. The lawyer can represent victims or dog owners who require assistance dealing with insurance companies following a bite.

Note that a dog owner can also hire a dog bite injury lawyer to recover damages after their pet has been bitten by another dog or for representation during a euthanasia hearing. Euthanasia can be required in California if a dog has rabies and has bitten more than two people or has seriously injured someone in the past. Unless the owner’s dog has rabies, a hearing is required before the dog is euthanized. The dog owner can present evidence to defend their dog’s actions, so the court can determine whether the canine threatens public safety.

Top 3 Reasons to Hire a Dog Bite Lawyer

Serious dog bite injuries that call for reconstructive surgery can bring about lost wages, substantial medical expenses, and pain and suffering. A dog bite attorney can assist in the following ways:

1. An Attorney Can Help You File a Dog Bite Lawsuit

Unlike other states that recognize the “one bite” rule, it does not apply in California law for most dog bite cases. Even if a dog has never bitten someone or shown signs of aggression, the state’s law holds dog owners strictly liable for any injuries their canines cause. California operates under a strict liability system. If an owner is aware of their dog’s propensity to violent behavior, they can be held liable for injuries and be asked to pay compensation. Conversely, the one-bite rule does extend some grace to dog owners whose dog has never bitten anyone before.

2. A Dog Bite Attorney Understands California Breed-Specific Laws (BSL)

California has strict liability laws for dog owners in the US. According to section 3342 of the California Civil Code, dog owners may be legally liable, especially if their pet is from dog breeds under the Breed-Specific Laws (BSL) in California.

These BSL laws state that all dogs, including pit bulls older than four months, must be licensed, neutered, or spayed. If you’ve been bitten by a pit bull terrier or any other dog breed on that BSL list, your lawyer may suggest taking legal action against the particular dog owner if they determine you have a case based on local laws.

3. An Attorney Can Deal With Insurance Companies on Your Behalf

The dog owner’s insurance company will attempt to offer a quick payout with as little money as possible to make the dog bite claim go away. A compassionate yet aggressive lawyer understands insurers don’t always have the victim’s best interest in mind. Part of filing a dog bite lawsuit involves writing and issuing a demand letter to the insurance company and the defendant demanding fair compensation for your injuries.

Your attorney will provide proof that the dog owner didn’t take reasonable care to control their dog and that their negligence directly or nearly caused your injuries. The demand letter will outline the nature of the injuries and proposed settlement value to pay for hospital bills, medication, lost income, property damage, etc.

An Experienced California Dog Bite Attorney at Kash Legal Can Help

Dog bite victims can choose to represent themselves, but this is not always the best option, especially if they don’t understand the unique and relevant laws applicable to their case. In addition, the financial implications of a dog bite attack can have devastating effects on a victim whose injuries are severe enough that they’re forced to miss work.

Our team of dog bite injury attorneys at Kash Legal has extensive experience, and we are more likely to retrieve satisfactory compensation. To speak with an expert in personal injury, contact us today by calling (888) 527-4128 or completing our contact form to schedule an appointment.

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