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Dog Bite Cases in California Involving Third Party Liability

A dog bite attack can cause significant injuries to the victim, and many victims often incur steep medical bills. With relevance to dog bite cases in California, it is critical to determine who can be held responsible for the attack. In a majority of cases, the dog’s owner will be held responsible for the attack; however, there are cases where third-party liability may come to play.

If you recently suffered a dog bite in the State of California, you may be eligible for compensation. As it pertains to California’s Civil Code Section 3342, or California’s strict dog bite law, the dog owner will be responsible for the medical expenses and other damages you may incur as a result of the attack. Your case, however, can become complex when a third-party is to be held responsible.

Examples of Third-Party Liability

California’s workplace industries are diverse, and a person’s job can sometimes bring him or her in direct contact with a dog. When an employee suffers a dog bite while on the job, he or she can pursue a California workers’ compensation claim. The work may also be able to pursue a this-party liability claim against the owner of the canine. For instance, when a postal worker has been injured as a result of a dog bite while on the job, this will ensue a more complex form of injury claim litigation.

Other potential third-parties that could be held liable following a dog bite are property owners. In the State of California, every property owner has the legal obligation to reasonably ensure the safety of their property visitors. A property owner who has a dangerous dog on the premises can be held responsible for the damages caused by the dog.

It is important to note that there are a few exceptions when it comes to California’s strict dog bite law, where a dog owner will not be held accountable. One of these is a veterinarian, or other professional who earns a living working with dogs. Many of these professions assume the risk of a dog bite, since it is part of his or her job. Additionally, when a dog is provoked, the owner will not be held accountable for the injuries caused.

Negligence in Dog Bite Cases

Another basis for imposing liability following a dog bite or dog attack is negligence. When it can be proven that the dog was not adequately controlled or handled, the defendant’s responsibility can be based on his or her negligence. In California, negligence is the theory that can be used in a case to demonstrate that there were third parties that contributed to the attack when California’s strict dog bite law does not apply. For instance, an apartment building owner or manager who knew or should have known about the dog’s likelihood of attacking someone can be held accountable for the injuries caused by the dog.

Obtain the Support of a Skilled Personal Injury Attorney

Establishing liability following a dog bite incident can be a complex dilemma. If you or someone you love was injured as a result of a dog bite or attack, contact the support of a knowledgeable law firm. You may be entitled to receive monetary compensation.

The personal injury attorneys at Milligan, Beswick, Levine & Knox, LLP are well-versed in the most complex dog bite cases in California. The firm is dedicated to championing for the rights of those who have been severely injured as a result of a dog bite or attack. Contact the firm today for a free case evaluation.

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Stephen Levine, is a Board Certified Specialist in Criminal Defense — an honor achieved by only the top criminal law attorneys in California. Mr. Levine has over 40 years of experience in criminal defense and family law serving Southern California, and is a highly regarded Super Lawyer as well as AV Rated attorney.