A landlord can be held liable for dog bite damages when a tenant is the dog’s owner. As with liability in other kinds of negligence cases, their liability will be a function of their knowledge of or control over the underlying risks.
Holding a landlord liable for this is not an impossible task, but it does require the legal skills, knowledge, and experience of a seasoned attorney to establish a winning argument. If you suffer a dog bite injury in Southern California, a Salamati Los Angeles personal injury lawyer will have everything you need to recover the largest available compensation that you deserve– from all liable parties.
Under What Circumstances Might a Landlord Be Liable for Dog Bites in California?
California landlords might bear dog bite liability under any one of three distinct scenarios:
- The landlord knew of a dog’s propensity to bite but did nothing to remove the dog from leased premises.
- The landlord agreed to take care of a tenant’s dog and had the power and opportunity to prevent the dog from biting another person.
- The landlord knowingly failed to maintain leased premises such that the failure is a proximate cause of the dog’s ability to bite and injure another person.
The crux of liability is that the landlord had the last and best opportunity to prevent this.
How Can an Injured Party Prove a Landlord’s liability for a Dog Bite?
Proof of a landlord’s liability for dog bite injuries will depend on the specific facts of each case. If a dog bites you and you believe that the owner is a tenant on a landlord’s property– you should collect as much information as you can, including:
- the name of the dog’s owner, and the name and contact information of the landlord;
- photographs of the location, and specifically of any fences or other restraining walls and leashes that may have been relied upon to restrain the dog;
- the dog’s licensing information and records of rabies and other vaccinations;
- a copy of the dog owner’s lease, if available;
- names and contact information from anybody who witnessed the dog bite.
You should also contact the local police or sheriff to file a report, even if you are not able to collect all of this information. Law enforcement will often conduct their own investigation, particularly if they have received other reports about similar incidences in the neighborhood.
Should You Seek Medical Treatment?
You should seek medical treatment, even if your injuries appear to be minor, and you did not experience any significant trauma. Even a slight wound can become infected from bacteria in a dog’s saliva. Those infections can cause greater problems even several days or weeks after the incident. Further, the records of your medical exam will be verification of your injuries—and important documentation in a lawsuit.
How Can a Personal Injury Lawyer Help You in a Landlord/Dog Bite Case?
Property owners frequently carry liability insurance that will cover damages, including dog bites. Tenants might carry renter’s insurance, but that might specifically exclude injuries like this. When you are bitten by a tenant’s dog in Southern California, a knowledgeable and experienced Los Angeles dog bite lawyer can advocate for your rights. They will analyze all potential insurance sources to reimburse you for the full range of your injuries and losses.
Call the Salamati Law Firm in Los Angeles for Assistance in Recovering the Largest Available Damages in Your Dog Bite Case
Landlords have a responsibility to provide safe and secure living premises for their tenants. In addition, landlords who are aware of dangerous dogs are likely to be liable. If you have suffered a serious dog bite injury in Southern California, please refer to the Salamati Law Firm website or call our Los Angeles dog bite attorneys. We offer a no-fee consultation about your case and your ability and opportunity to recover the damages you deserve.