Did you know that over half of American households own at least one pet? These loveable creatures take every size, shape and personality and are much more than just a pet, they are family. Unfortunately, dogs do not come without their legal issues. A recent study reported in the National Law Review found that when it comes to pets and homeowners liability claims, it is an expensive relationship.
The National Law Review reports that, "The cost of animal attacks represents almost a third of all homeowners' liability claims in 2016 and the cost per claims has increased by nearly 70% over the last decade...The CDC estimates that there are approximately 4.5 million dog bites every year but the majority result in very minor injuries or are settled privately without a claim." Here's a look at some of the key statistics when it comes to dog bites:
- Over 1/2 of dog bites involve a victim that is familiar with on some level (family pet, neighbor, etc)
- The average dog bite claim in 2016 was $33,000
- Children between the ages of 5-9 are most prone to becoming victims of dog bites
- Insurance companies are increasingly denying coverage to owners of danger dog breeds, including: pit bulls, Dobermans and Rotteweilers
So what can you do when you are dealing with injuries sustained from a dog bite? As with any injury, always make sure that you are focusing on your personal recovery before anything else. Ignoring injuries and pains do not make them go away. Many dog and animal attacks result in major scars and disfigurements that need to be attended to right away in order to reduce their appearance and physical impact-- not only is this extremely expensive, it can take an emotional and psychological toll on the victim.
Getting in touch with a personal injury attorney to discuss your case is the next important step following a dog bite. Why? Because if you were injured by a dog or other animal, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries, missed work time and more.Governed by California Civil Code Section 3342(a), makes the owner of a dog liable for any injuries their animal causes in a public place or lawfully in a private place regardless of any knowledge of prior viciousness. What this means is that there isn't much of an argument the dog owner can make as a defense.
The sooner you act the better and there are very important and strict time limitations for filing a claim that you do not want to miss. At the Walch Law Firm we have helped clients with their dog bite injuries and would love to talk to you more about your case, any questions you might have and how we can help-- give us a call today to schedule your free consultation.