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Postal Worker Dog Bite Attorney in LA

postal worker dog bite lawyer
postal worker dog bite lawyer

United States Postal Service (USPS) carriers face considerable risk when delivering mail directly to the doors of Los Angeles homes and businesses, a threat that most of us seldom consider.

These trusted public workers don’t expect domestic animals to turn aggressive without warning. Yet, in recent years, attacks by dogs left unrestrained by their owners have spiked across the region.

Far more than just surface-level bites, many postal workers suffer severe injuries from dog attacks, including nerve damage, broken bones, or wounds requiring extensive surgery and rehabilitation. The trauma of a brutal, unprovoked attack also leaves some mail carriers with psychological injuries years after a dog bite incident.

Trending Dog Bite Statistics Put Los Angeles Mail Workers at Risk

New USPS statistics have revealed over 5,300 postal employees suffered dog bite attacks in 2022 alone. Tragically, some postal worker dog bites have even resulted in death.

As experienced Los Angeles dog bite attorneys assisting USPS mail carriers in their lawsuits, we’ve seen bodily harm and losses first-hand that statistics can never fully capture. Behind the numbers lie stories of diligent postal carriers struggling to continue federal employment or support their families.

There is a trend in California where irresponsible dog owners fail to restrain aggressive animals. While postal workers try to avoid confrontation, owners must be held accountable for the harm their negligence causes.

Why Postal Carriers Are Prone to Dog Bite Injuries

Though dog bites are unavoidable job hazards in many professions, the unique access postal workers require to deliver the mail invariably leads to more frequent attacks.

In our many years of assisting postal workers seek restitution in court, we’ve found three factors consistently contribute to USPS dog attacks in Los Angeles:

Loose, Unrestrained Dogs Roaming Property

Postal regulation prohibits workers from entering fenced yards with dogs or properties indicating the presence of dogs. Still, loose dogs with hidden front door access pose a significant threat. An owner’s failure to secure or restrain dogs during mail delivery caused postal worker dog bites in over two-thirds of our caseloads.

Many family dogs become territorial when non-family members approach houses or restricted areas. As such, some dogs instinctively attack to protect home environments, and owners don’t discourage the behavior.

Lack of Human Consort

Client police reports have confirmed serious postal worker dog bite incidents involving newly adopted animals. These attacks occurred because the animal never learned to socialize with strangers or react passively in certain situations.

Improper Training

A lack of early socialization training in large, powerful dog breeds often causes extensive bite damage in postal workers. Because of this, state legislators have conveyed high legal duties on dog owners to take reasonable precautions to restrain aggressive dog behavior around mail carriers serving the community.

Prolonged Personal Injury Damage from Dog Attacks

According to USPS statistics, some postal workers endured horrific wounds after a dog bite (even from small dogs) that required emergency and outpatient medical treatment. Large dog bites provoke extensive tissue and muscle trauma, requiring reconstructive surgery that sometimes leads to permanent disability or disfigurement.

Other severe postal worker dog bite damages include:

  • Infection: The crushing power and bacteria in a dog’s mouth, even for minor wounds, frequently cause disease when not adequately disinfected.
  • Nerve Damage: Bites around the fingers, hands, arms, and calves often sever sensory nerves and tendons, limiting mobility long after recovery.
  • Psychological Trauma: Many postal worker veterans face anxiety, sleeplessness, or PTSD following terrifying encounters with aggressive dogs to the point where some are unable to work after an incident.

Canine attack harm may reach far beyond the painful bite itself. Missing work during recovery, extensive medical treatment, anxiety medication costs, and physical rehabilitation all take substantial tolls on a USPS mail carrier’s finances and families.

What Steps Should You Take After Suffering a Dog Bite?

Despite California dog owners being strictly liable to dog bite victims, postal workers should take crucial steps to mitigate damages and preserve evidence in the aftermath of a dog bite.

Report Serious Bites Promptly

For USPS administrative purposes and building a solid claim, immediately notifying supervisors after a dog bite event generates documentation of the incident and establishes crucial timelines.

Call 911

In cases of substantial injury, call 911 to initiate police and emergency medical response. Early law enforcement involvement may help determine liability and retort an owner’s attempt to deny allegations later.

Seek Medical Attention & Outpatient Care

Obtain prompt medical treatment to:

  • Treat potential infections stemming from canine bites.
  • Assess muscle or tissue damage before healing begins.
  • Record medical progress should litigation become necessary.
  • Maximize chances of returning to full recovery.

In severe bites, major reconstructive surgery often follows emergency wound closure. Your Los Angeles dog bite attorney can help you secure optimal medical care long after the incident.

California Dog Bite Laws Offer Postal Workers Remedies

Our law firm understands California’s strict liability, no-fault statutes after assisting postal employees sue dog owners in Los Angeles for many years.

Under California Civil Code 3342 (Cal. Civ. Code § 3342), when a dog bites a postal worker while performing his/her USPS duties, with or without provocation, the dog owner faces complete responsibility to remedy all resulting damages.

Known as the “strict liability dog bite rule” throughout the U.S. legal system, California implemented one of the nation’s first and most comprehensive dog bite statutes nearly 60 years ago. At the statute’s core, owners of dogs that display aggression or biting tendencies must always restrain and secure their animals on their property.

Cal. Civ. Code § 3342 also conveys the following rights to postal workers who suffer severe dog bites:

  • Dog owners become financially accountable for all medical expenses, lost wages from missed work, lingering healthcare costs, property damage, and long-term impacts linked to physical disability or trauma.
  • Postal workers have grounds to take legal action regardless of breed or past behavior – even if the dog never acted aggressively before or is typically considered docile.
  • Owners cannot evade responsibility by claiming bites occurred “outside their home” on front porches or driveways where postal staff fulfill their duties.
  • Because of the nature of the USPS profession, the Courts cannot reduce compensation by ruling a postal worker “assumed a known risk” of getting bit.

Strict liability principles mean owners are responsible for the consequences of a malicious dog attack and must compensate the bite victim regardless of who was at fault.

Elements Impacting Postal Worker Dog Bite Settlements

While liability itself may be straightforward under Cal. Civ. Code § 3342, collecting damages during pretrial settlement negotiations or negotiations with insurance companies often depends on the following mitigating circumstances:

  • Bite Severity – More extensive bite injuries and longer, costlier recovery periods warrant higher payouts when documentation proves the damages. Photos, wound logs, and physician declarations carry considerable weight.
  • Prior Incidents – If neighbors or animal control agencies confirm a dog’s previous aggression or biting incidents, owners will find asserting a “first bite” defense difficult.
  • Local Jurisdiction Laws – Some Los Angeles municipal courts impose caps on cases lacking substantial medical bills, while others disallow six- and seven-figure pain and suffering awards. Knowing venue tendencies leads to forming better legal strategies.
  • Insurance Policy Limits – Despite strict liability statutes, postal worker dog bite awards cannot exceed monetary caps on homeowners’ or renters’ insurance. Maxing out policy coverage may consequently occur.

Get the Compensation You Deserve After a Dog Bite

If you are a postal worker who has suffered physical harm, trauma, or other severe damage from a dog bite attack while carrying out your USPS duties in Los Angeles, the civil litigation attorneys at LA Dog Bite Law will relentlessly fight for the compensation you legally deserve.

With decades of combined experience representing workers in successful dog bite claims and lawsuits, we know how to build an ironclad case and hold negligent dog owners accountable. Our track record and positive client reviews show we have the negotiation skills, courtroom prowess, and personal dedication to take on your case and maximize your settlement.

Don’t wait. If a dog or a loved one attacked you while delivering mail, contact LA Dog Bite Law for a free consultation now. Complete our online intake form to get started. We only get paid if we win your case.

How to Report a Dog Bite Near You

Our reach extends throughout California, from the sunny streets of San Diego to the bustling cities of Los Angeles and San Francisco, and beyond. We’re here to help victims across the state report dog bites, find the legal support they need, and ensure that justice is served. By reporting dog bites and seeking assistance, we’re all doing our part in making our communities safer while helping victims get back on their feet.

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