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Owners are responsible for dog bite injuries on their property


Dogs can be a wonderful companions, protectors, and lifelong friends, but unfortunately in the hands of an irresponsible owner, a dog can also be a deadly menace. That is why California has laws specifically geared toward imposing liability upon dog owners when those dogs bite another person under certain circumstances.

Under California law, a dog owner is strictly liable for the damages caused by a dog who bites a person in a public place. So the owner would undoubtedly be liable for a dog who attacks a person in a public park or a jogger on a public street.

The same is also true of a dog who bites a person who is lawfully in a private place, including the home of the dog owner. Under the law, a person is lawfully in a private place whenever they are compelled to be there by law, or if they have the authority of the property owner to be there. For example, a mailman who is required to enter the property to deliver the mail would be covered under the law. Another example would be a person who is visiting the dog owner or their family, assuming that person has the implied consent to be there. This would also include other people on the premises, such as babysitters, plumbers or other people conducting business with the consent or invitation of the property owner.

Dog owners must be careful to protect the public as well as their guests from injury, especially injuries caused by bites. People who suffer animal bites in California may be entitled to damages, including amounts for pain and suffering. An experienced personal injury attorney can provide the necessary guidance to help victims of dog bites get the monetary relief and compensation they deserve.

Source: Official California Legislative Information, "CIVIL CODE SECTION 3333-3343.7,", accessed Aug. 15, 2014

Source: Official California Legislative Information, "CIVIL CODE SECTION 3333-3343.7,", accessed Aug. 15, 2014

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