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Understanding Dog Bites / Animal Bites Law in California

Thursday, September 22, 2016

If you are the victim of a dog bite or other kind of animal bite in California, you need to understand the laws that affect your situation before making any decisions about compensation or settlement. Dog and animal bite situations can range anywhere from relatively harmless to life-changing. You will need to take several factors into account and speak with an attorney to learn your options and understand how to navigate the complicated legal process.

To put it simply, California law is quite clear, in Civil Code section 3342 that dog owners are liable for any physical damage suffered by a person in a public or reasonable private residence or dwelling. So, if you are a dog owner, it's important to make sure your dog is obedient and well-trained. Conversely, if a dog or animal bites you while you are acting reasonably, you are perfectly within your rights to seek compensation that aligns with your scope of pain and injuries.

With the right legal and medical analysis, victims of dog and animal bites can increase their chances of a swift and fair judgement for compensation in a court of law, if necessary. In the best outcomes, victims can reach a settlement without the need for a court appearance. If you experience a dog or animal bite, we can help you determine the best next steps you can take as a reasonable course of action.

Please know, there are times when you may not have a case...

California law is quite clear about the instances when dogs or animals can bite without breaking the law. For instance, if you are bit by a canine working for law enforcement, you may not hold the agency liable if you were breaking the law or inciting the animal in any way that proved the attack. Also, if you are being held as the suspect in a crime and get bit, you will not have.

The main takeaway is you need the advice of experienced lawyers who handle dog and animal bite cases before settling with the owner of an attacking animal. We specialize in helping citizens of Los Angeles and several surrounding areas, including: San Fernando Valley, Woodland Hills, Van Nuys, Encino, Thousand Oak and North Hollywood. Contact us to talk about your situation as soon as possible. Sometimes, the longer you wait, the weaker your case. And be sure to follow us on Twitter to keep up with our latest legal news, blogs and other helpful info.

The Hidden Dangers and Burn Injury Risks of Electronic Cigarettes

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Many people believe that electronic cigarettes are safer compared to conventional cigarettes. But even though e-cigs don’t combust tobacco the way the traditional tobacco cigarette does, these electronic products still pose dangerous burn injury risks. A troubling number of reports are surfacing showing how e-cigs can explode, causing facial and burn injuries.

The vapors of e-cigs are produced by heating a liquid, a process powered by a lithium ion battery. These batteries have already posed fire risks in other products, such as laptop computers. But the risk of a fire and potential explosion is higher in e-cigs due to the design of these products, according to Scientific American. The magazine notes that a 2014 report from the U.S. Fire Administration found that these devices’ cylindrical shape means that its weakest points are at its ends. These points are most likely to explode if the battery fails, the agency said.

A man in Albany, NY, found himself the victim of an exploding e-cigAccording to CNN, the exploding device knocked out teeth, ripped a hole in his tongue, and caused burns to his hands. CNN also noted another incident involving an Alabama teenager whose e-cig exploded and sent the device’s hot battery into his face.

Representatives of electronic tobacco products are standing up for their products, saying that they are rare. The Tobacco Vapor Electronic Cigarette Association said that when explosions happen, they are usually attributed to an e-cig’s charger. But regardless of the cause of the battery failure, an electronic cigarette poses a risk of explosion and fire. If you have experienced burns or other injuries from e-cigs, please contact us to learn more about your legal options.

What to do if You are the Victim of Auto Accidents

Friday, September 09, 2016

Tragedy can strike anywhere -- even California. And all of the cities in the state are full to the brim with drivers -- commuters, taxis, buses, public servants. All of that traffic can lead to some nasty situations, including ones where you get hit by a vehicle. This is a difficult situation to handle, so here are some steps to follow in the wake of the accident, so that you can maximize your health and well-being.

What to do if you are victim of an auto accident:

The first thing to do in the wake of an automobile accident as a pedestrian is to make sure that you are not in any physical danger. If you are hurt badly, you will be taken to a nearby hospital; if the hit was not as hard, simply do an internal checkup on yourself. If you are not seriously hurt, the driver should wait for you and exchange information; if they do not, speak to other witnesses who can help provide you with identifying information. That is name, contact information and insurance information.

The next important step is to make sure you know your rights -- as a victim, you are afforded legal options that you may pursue. If the driver is liable for the accident, you may pursue legal action against them.

This legal action is important because it protects your health and wellbeing. For instance, medical bills (if you are seriously injured) can be very expensive, and this is a situation where you could be reimbursed by the driver's insurance; if the insurance company is not very forthcoming, you may take the action to civil court.

It is important to note, though, that these legal actions are complicated, and if you want to be able to make the most of them to pay for your medical bills, you will probably need to hire a lawyer. Speak with your attorney to determine liability, damages and any other pertinent information for the case.

If you are in California and experience such an accident, please contact us -- we will fight to make sure you receive just compensation for your accident.


POOL ACCIDENTS AND DROWNING INJURIES: What to do if You've been Injured

Thursday, September 01, 2016

According to the CDC, each year hundreds of children die and thousands more are injured in swimming pool accidents; these happen in public pools, on private property and even water parks. Here in California, the summer months are particularly hazardous with school out, warm weather and plenty of children playing in and around water.

There are several ways you could be injured in a swimming pool accident. The most common and unfortunate form of swimming pool accident involves small children. If a pool has not been properly secured, or if the child has not been adequately supervised tragedy could result.

Pool Accidents and Drowning Injuries

if you are visiting a private home, staying in a hotel or anywhere that has a pool, then that pool needs to be properly secured. Children should not be allowed to access the swimming area without supervision. Drownings can happen in an instant. The owner of the pool needs to make sure that children can’t easily access the swimming area without supervision. In 2015 a child died at Disney World’s Art of Animation resort because he was able to access the swimming pool in the middle of the night. Disney is since put a fence around this pool and around every other resort pool on their property.

When a business doesn’t take proper precautions or homeowner fails to fence in their pool securely a child could drown or be catastrophically injured. Commercial and residential pool owners who fail to secure their swimming area could be held liable for the injuries and death that result from their lack of action.

What to do if You’ve Been Injured in a Pool Accident

Even in properly enclosed pool areas children and adults can be injured by unsafe conditions. The behavior of others in the pool area, the cleanliness of the pool itself and the maintenance of the surrounding area can all contribute to accidents in the pool.

Even those who have been able to be resuscitated or have avoided death can have significant brain injury after a pool accident. If you or your child has been injured in a pool accident seek out medical help immediately. Document the conditions of the pool and the incident; take photographs, interview witnesses have the commercial establishment file a report about the accident.

Seek out legal help. A personal injury attorney can help you get the help you need after a pool related injury or accident. Never accept a settlement or money from an insurance agency without speaking to an attorney first. The company that injured you or the party that injured you needs to be held responsible for that accident.

Contact us to learn more about protecting your rights after a swimming pool accident or injury. Whether you’ve been hurt yourself or your child has been a victim we can help you get the compensation you deserve.


Dog Bites / Animal Bites: How To Prevent Them

Friday, August 26, 2016

Nearly 4.5 million Dog Bites / Animal Bites occur in the U.S. each year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Many of the victims are children, and many of the bites occur in the dogs' own homes.

And dogs aren't the only companion animals who can bite and cause serious injury. Cat bites, too, can be very dangerous.

How do you prevent Dog Bites / Animal Bites? Just follow these safety tips.

  • Never corner or try to pick up a frightened cat. Even the sweetest, gentlest house cat will attack if it feels trapped.
  • Supervise young children when they're with family pets, and teach them to treat dogs and cats with respect and caution.
  • Never startle a dog or cat who's sleeping, and don't disturb dogs when they're eating or caring for puppies. Cats caring for kittens need their own space, too.
  • Don't try to pet a dog without allowing it to see you and sniff your hand first.
  • Discourage aggressive play by both dogs and cats.

When An Unfamiliar Dog Approaches

Always be cautious of dogs you don't know. Keep these suggestions in mind to avoid an attack or bite.

  • Avoid direct eye contact with the dog. Direct eye contact sends an aggressive message to both dogs and cats.
  • Stand sideways and stay still until the dog goes away.
  • Say "No" or "Go Home" in a firm, deep voice, but don't clap your hands or make loud noises that will frighten the dog and make it more likely to attack.
  • If the dog knocks you over, curl into a ball with your head against your chest, and put your hands over your neck and ears.

Sometimes the worst happens, and it's not possible to prevent an attack. If you're the victim of a Dog Bite / Animal Bitecontact us to discuss your options and to find out whether you're entitled to compensation for your injuries.


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Woodland Hills, CA 91367-7418

P: 818-992-2919
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From our offices in Woodland Hills, California, Freeman & Freeman, LLP, provides legal advice and representation for clients in communities throughout the state, including those in Burbank, Glendale, Encino, Sherman Oaks, Van Nuys, Tarzana, Santa Clarita, Agoura Hills, Reseda, Canoga Park, Chatsworth, Northridge, Granada Hills, Pacoima, Panorama City, North Hollywood, Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Lancaster, Palmdale and Alhambra.