All too commonly, people ask me what to do if their child is bitten by a dog. Sometimes if it’s a minor bite, and a little fright, if it goes away and there’s one little doctor visit, my advice is, “Gee, let it go.” But, unfortunately we’ve seen some horrible dog bites in our career, with major permanent damage and scarring. And, in those cases, California has what’s called a Strict Liability Law for dog bites. So, unlike other kinds of injuries you don’t have to prove that the owner of the dog is negligent.
If the dog bit someone, the owner is strictly liable for that. And, as a general rule, the owner’s homeowners insurance covers them for dog bites. And homeowners insurance is usually carried at a high level. In California, a good eighty percent of the homeowners insurance policies have liability limits of $300,000 or more.
We do a lot of these cases. I wish there weren’t so many, but there are. And, the law is very much on the side of the injured child.