Dog bite liability in California is important for victims to understand because the damages from a dog can be so significant. Because victims can suffer extensively on physical, financial and emotional levels, following a dog attack, it is important for victims to be familiar with the legal protections available to them.
Dog bite protections
California is considered a strict liability dog bite state. What this means in effect for victims is that dog and pet owners are strictly liable for the harm caused by their pets. The dog owner is liable for damages suffered by the victim if the victim was bitten while in a public place or lawfully in a private place which can include property of the dog or pet’s owner. The pet owner is considered liable whether or not the dog had a history of vicious behavior or if the dog owner knew of the dog’s viciousness. This provides greater protection for victims injured by a dog bite.
Victims of dog attacks and dog bites can suffer physical and emotional trauma. Both can result in financial damages. A personal injury claim against the dog’s owner can help victims recover compensation for their physical, financial and emotional damages which may include medical expenses and other care and treatment associated with the dog bite. A dog attack can be traumatic and victims may suffer serious injuries and have to live with the overall impacts for many years following the attack. For that reason, they should be familiar with the different legal protections available to them and how they may be able to help.