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Seeking compensation for dog bite injuries in San Diego

On Behalf of | Mar 22, 2023 | Dog Bites, Personal Injury

Dealing with any injury can take a lot of time and energy. Aside from focusing on treatment and recovery, victims also have to consider the medical costs they must shoulder. If you seek compensation for a dog bite injury, it is good to take note of the appropriate dog laws to determine if your case can stand.

California dog bite law

Unlike most personal injury cases, dog bite victims do not have to prove negligence or carelessness to recover compensation. California strictly holds dog owners responsible if their dog bites a person in a public place or a private setting if that person is there lawfully.

The victim must file the dog bite lawsuit within two years of the incident. Otherwise, they will lose their right to seek and recover compensation.

When the law does not apply

Even though the law strictly holds liable dog owners, some technicalities may bar a bitten person from seeking compensation. This includes but is not limited to the following:

  • The bitten individual was a trespasser
  • The injury is not a bite
  • Property damage
  • If the dog is a police or military dog on duty

Moreover, the law does not apply to temporary keepers of the dog, such as dog walkers or groomers. It only applies to the dog’s owner. However, if one wants to bring a lawsuit against the dog’s keeper, who is not the owner, one can look into the “one-bite rule.”

The “one-bite rule”

A victim can sue the dog’s owner or keeper for damages due to negligence if the latter knew the animal was dangerous and did not exercise reasonable care to prevent the dog from attacking the victim. However, the victim has the burden to prove negligence on the defendant’s part, which can be difficult.

Understanding dog bite laws in San Diego can remove many doubts from the victim’s mind. Whether under the dog bite law or the “one-bite rule,” dog bite victims can seek compensation for their bite injuries.