Beverly Hills Dog Bite Attorneys
Fighting For the Rights of Dog Bite Victims
Have you or a loved one been injured in an animal attack and suffered a dog bite injury? In the United States alone, about 4.5 million dog bites occur every year. Nearly half of those bites are to children. Approximately one in five of those bites requires medical attention to treat the infection. A dog bite attack can cause severe and long-lasting injuries.
The Beverly Hills injury lawyers at Levitt Leichenger & Aberle LLP serve clients who have been injured by a dog bite and need legal counsel. Even if the dog bite didn't break the skin, it is still considered a bite, and the owner is liable for their dog's actions. We will help you file a claim, calculate your losses, and obtain a fair settlement.
A dog attack can be a terrifying experience and may cause serious physical and emotional harm—especially in children. Handling a dog bite case can be a complex process, so it is critical to have a skilled and experienced Los Angeles dog bite lawyer on your side from the very start. Levitt, Leichenger and Aberle has that experience.
To learn how we can help you succeed in your dog bite claim, call (323) 524-2400 or contact us online to book your free, no-obligation case evaluation. Levitt, Leichenger & Aberle LLP is here for you. ¡Hablamos Español!
Can I Sue If The Dog Bite Didn’t Break Skin?
A person may sue an owner for a minor dog bite that didn't break the skin. In one case, Johnson v. McMahan (1998 68 Cal.App.4th 173), a worker was injured when he fell from a ladder after a dog had closed its jaws on his pants. The bite didn't break the skin, but the evidence showed that it did cause the worker to fall off the ladder and suffer injuries.
About the One Free Bite Rule
California currently does not have a ‘One Bite Rule’ -- its general liability rule for dog bites are strict. The ‘One Bite Rule’ means that the owner is protected from liability for the first injury that is caused by the dog. If the same dog injures someone, then the owner will be held liable for it.
Common Dog Bite Injuries
If you have suffered from a dog bite, seek immediate medical attention. A dog bite can lead to:
- Puncture wounds
- Nerve damage
- Face injuries
- Throat injuries
If you have sustained an injury from a dog attack, reach out to a dog bite lawyer in Beverly Hills today.
What Do I Do Right Now?
Time is critical in dog bite cases, so you need to take the following steps right away:
- Seek medical assistance right away, if needed.
- Secure any evidence (take pictures!).
- Get the names and phone numbers of any witnesses.
- Look or ask around to see if there were any security cameras that might have captured the attack.
- Find out who owns the dog.
- Identify other possibly liable parties (for example, the homeowner).
- Get the homeowners’ insurance information for the dog owner and/or homeowner who owns the property where the attack occurred.
- Call the Law Offices of Levitt, Leichenger & Aberle at (323) 524-2400 to speak with a Beverly Hills dog bite attorney.
Bitten by a dog? You might have a case. Call dog bite lawyers in Beverly Hills at (323) 524-2400 for a consultation today.
Dog Bite Claims in California: Are Dog Owners Liable?
In California, dog owners are generally liable when their dogs attack someone, even if the owner did not know that their dog was potentially vicious before the attack. Under state law, if a dog owner is found liable for what their dog did, they are responsible for paying your medical bills, even if it was the first time the dog ever bit anyone.
How To Prove That Your Dog Didn't Bite Someone
To avoid liability, the defendant (dog owner) can win by convincing the judge that the plaintiff did not prove all necessary elements of their case or providing a successful defense. Providing a strong affirmative defense means that the defendant can win the case even if the plaintiff proved all of the elements required in a dog bite injury case.
As in any injury claim, the plaintiff (person who is suing) must be able to prove that the defendant is liable for the incident that led to the harm.
Some defenses in a dog bite case are:
- Plaintiff was trespassing on the property when the incident occurred.
- Plaintiff provoked the dog.
- Plaintiff assumed the risk of a dog bite -- for example, a delivery person can see that there is an excited, barking dog in the yard that is not chained, but they decide to enter the yard anyway.
Call (323) 524-2400 for a free initial consultation with skilled dog bite attorneys. Serving Los Angeles since 1995. Our services are available in Spanish.
What Type of Compensation Can I Get?
In addition to your medical bills, your dog bite attorney will work to get you compensation for lost wages and pain and suffering damages. If the dog bit someone before, or the dog is regularly vicious and the owner knew about this behavior, they can face punitive damages. A dog is considered vicious if it aggressively injures or kills someone without being provoked.
Statute of Limitations for Dog Bites
The statute of limitations for a victim to sue for a dog bite is two years in California—but certain steps need to be taken right away to maximize your opportunity to recover damages against a dog owner. If you or a loved one is the victim of a dog bite you should seek immediate medical assistance and then contact the dog bite attorneys at Levitt Leichenger & Aberle right away.
How Our Dog Bite Injury Attorneys Can Help
Among other critical steps, your Levitt, Leichenger & Aberle attorney will work with you to:
- Make a report of the incident to animal control (and get a copy of the report),
- Coordinate your medical care and document the treatment,
- Contact any relevant insurance companies and establish a claim,
- Represent you against the other party and diligently pursue the maximum possible recovery, and
- Negotiate a settlement either outside of court or take the matter to trial, as appropriate.
Talk to a dedicated Beverly Hills dog bite lawyer.
Call (323) 524-2400 for a free consultation.
How Do I Establish My Claim?
In order to establish your dog bite claim, you must be able to prove that:
- The other person owned the dog that attacked you.
- The dog bit you while they were on private property or in a public place.
- You were harmed.
- The dog owner's dog caused you harm.
To ensure that you have a case, reach out to one of our experienced dog bite attorneys in Los Angeles. We are here to help you recover damages after an attack.
What Should I Not Do?
Do not give any insurance company any information and do not sign anything without first discussing it with your lawyer.
Insurance companies—even your own—are interested in protecting themselves from claims as much as possible. Any information you give them will be used against you to destroy or minimize your claim.
Do not try to settle the case yourself. You may be entitled to financial compensation for damages you don’t even know exist. For example, the value of your case increases when you receive medical treatment and incur expenses. Dog bites often cause scars that require plastic surgery or other medical procedures. Those treatments are “damages” and increase the value of your claim.
It is important to contact an experienced lawyer as soon as possible after a dog attack. In California, a knowledgeable, experienced dog bite lawyer in Los Angeles can go after full compensation for all the damages you are entitled to recover.
Levitt, Leichenger & Aberle LLP Can Help
If you have suffered from a dog bite in the last two years, contact the Beverly Hills dog bite lawyers at Levitt Leichenger & Aberle, LLP today. Dog bite lawsuits can be complicated, as they sometimes come between people who have close relationships. Moreover, there are often liable parties that you may not even be aware of. Get our experienced dog bite attorneys on your side today to help get the maximum possible compensation.