Dog Bite Attorney in San Jose
You Need an Experienced Lawyer By Your Side
Injuries caused by dog bites or other dangerous animals can be serious. The incident itself can be very emotionally traumatic in addition to dealing with what can be a very catastrophic injury. To add insult to injury, often the insurance company will argue the owner or caretaker of the animal did not know the animal had prior dangerous behaviors. In some cases, insurers may claim that somehow the victim consented to the risk of being injured by petting or playing with the animal. However, our qualified San Jose dog bite lawyer can help you fight for your right to recovery.
Dangerous animals can cause serious neurological damage in addition to quadriplegia, bone fractures, and gruesome facial disfigurement. Braid Pezzaglia has handled dog bites and other dangerous animal cases for 20 years and has held accountable those persons whose carelessness, negligence, or other wrongful behavior caused life-altering injuries. It is Mr. Pezzaglia’s years of evaluating the facts and circumstances, questioning assumptions, and strategically arguing cases that have led to millions of dollars of settlements and judgments.
To find out more about how the Law Offices of Braid Pezzaglia can help, call us at (408) 650-8955 today.
What Do I Do If an Animal Attacks Me?
If you or your child is bitten by a dog or harmed in any kind of animal attack, then you should take steps to protect yourself, including:
- Seek Medical Attention Right Away: The first thing you should do is seek medical attention. Dog bites can be particularly concerning due to the potential for infection. You will also want a medical record of the injuries you sustained.
- Identify the Animal That Attacked You: Often dog bite cases involve pets of family or friends. However, if you do not know the pet owner, then try to identify the animal that attacked you. The identity of the owner is critical because the owner is generally the responsible party. If the animal’s owner has home insurance, then the insurance company may pay for your injuries.
- Report the Animal Attack: File a report with the local animal control or the local law enforcement agency. Provide as much information about the dog as possible, including the owner’s name and contact information. If you suspect the dog was a stray, then describe the animal’s appearance and the exact location where the animal attack occurred.
- Take Pictures of Your Injuries: Have someone take pictures of all visible injuries caused by the animal, including scratches, lacerations, and bruises. If your clothes are torn or bloody, then take pictures of them too. If possible, take pictures of the animal and the location where the attack happened.
- Consult a Reputable Dog Bite Lawyer: After an animal attack, the victim is often left to deal with physical and emotional pain, treatments, medical bills, and pressure from the insurance company to settle for less than the claim is worth. Swift action by an attorney with significant knowledge of California dog bite law can help you move forward and get the compensation you deserve.
Who Is Liable When an Animal Attacks Me?
California law holds a dog owner liable for an attack even when the dog has never bitten anyone before. This type of law is called strict liability. California’s dog bite law effectively eliminated the previous “one-free bite” rule, which only held an owner liable if the dog had caused previous injuries. When determining liability, it is irrelevant whether a dog bit someone before or whether the animal’s owner knew of the potential viciousness.
Under this law, the victim only needs to prove:
- The defendant is the dog’s owner
- The dog attack happened on public property or the victim was lawfully on private property
- A bite or other injury occurred during the attack
- The dog was the cause of the injury
A caretaker or keeper of the animal may also be liable, but not under the strict liability law. To be liable, a keeper must have had prior knowledge of the vicious propensities of the dog. If the keeper or caretaker knew the dog had previously been involved in an attack, then this would likely qualify as “prior knowledge.” This would make the keeper or caretaker liable when the dog is under their control. The keeper may also be liable if he or she was negligent in controlling or handling the dog.
There may be other liable parties in a dog attack, depending on the particular facts and circumstances of the case. Identifying the responsible parties is a critical element in a successful lawsuit. This is especially true where the dog’s owner does not have the funds to fully compensate the victim. Our knowledgeable San Jose dog bite attorney investigates the facts surrounding dog attacks and determines the parties that may be responsible for compensating the victim for his or her injuries.
Let Us Help You
Although it is common to immediately think it obvious who is at fault and why, the preservation and development of evidence is still crucial. An attorney can assist you with all of these steps to protect your claim.
Quality legal representation is the key to a successful outcome for your dog bite case.
Before speaking to the owner’s insurance company or making statements to anyone, contact the Law Offices of Braid Pezzaglia online or at (408) 650-8955 for a free consultation with an experienced San Jose dog bite attorney. We work hard to negotiate a settlement or, if necessary, aggressively litigate your case.
Experienced & Dedicated Counsel
Attorney Braid Pezzaglia has over 20 years of dedicated legal experience and provides legal counsel and guidance in five languages, including Japanese, Spanish, Chinese, and Tagalog. We work to customize your experience for your needs.
Personalized Strategies & Results
Unlike other firms, our firm cares about instilling confidence in both you and your case. Our attorneys work one-on-one with you to ensure that your unique needs and goals are not only understood but obtained.
Accountable & Transparent
At the Law Offices of Braid Pezzaglia, we pride ourselves on always being available to our clients and we make it our main priority to keep you informed on how our team is working to obtain the best possible result on your behalf