When California residents are attacked by dogs on other people’s properties, they retain the right to pursue compensation for the resulting medical expenses. However, as a premises liability claim can take a long time to process, there are some steps to be taken immediately after the incident. Regardless of the severity of the injury, accurate records should be kept as evidence to protect the rights of the victim.
The incident should be reported to authorities. Information about the owner of the dog and details about prior incidents involving the dog are vital. Dogs with records of previous attacks may have already been labeled as potential dangers. If the owner of a dog cannot be identified, the victim may need a course of rabies injections.
As evidence, the victim may want to photograph the wounds, along with torn or bloodied clothing, and the scene where the attack took place. In order to obtain fair compensation, it may be advisable to keep an accurate record of medical expenses and possible medical complications resulting from the attack. Keeping an updated journal during the time leading up to the court case may help to justify claims.
Victims of dog bites in California may benefit from a consultation with an experienced premises liability attorney as soon as possible after the incident. Evidence may not be available at a later stage. Premises liability claims involving dog attacks are complex areas of the law, and a victim may need a lawyer to protect his or her rights under state and federal law.
Source: dogsbite.org, “Dog bite victim guide“, Accessed on Feb. 27, 2015