Were You Bitten by a Dog in California? Learn Why a Doctor Must Report Your Dog Bite
If you were bitten by a dog then your first step is likely to get medical care. At Law Offices of Fernando D. Vargas we find that many people do not realize that their doctor must report that dog bite. However, this does not mean that the owner of the dog will automatically be responsible for paying your damages. Read on to learn how the process works.
Reports Are Required Even if the Bite Was Not Serious
According to California law, a doctor is required to report a dog bite for which they provided treatment and/or evaluation. They must report the dog bite even in the instance that the victim did not suffer a serious injury and there is evidence that the dog did not have the rabies vaccine. The doctor must immediately notify the local health officials or whomever their designees are.
There is a Good Reason Doctors are Required to Report Dog Bites
It might seem strange that doctors are required to report dog bites but there is a good reason: To stop the spread of rabies. This reasoning might make it seem as though the doctor would not have to report the bite if they have proof that the dog has rabies. The law does not make this exception. The only time the dog bite does not have to be reported is if the only injury was to another dog.
Doctors Aren’t the Only Ones Required to Report Dog Bites
California Code of Regulations 2606 makes it a requirement that doctors report dog bites. This regulation goes a step further and requires that all people make a report if a human is bitten by a dog. Yes, this includes doctors but it also includes anyone else. The report should go to the local health officer or whomever they have designated to take these reports.
Dog Bites without Injury Must Also Be Reported
This requirement goes a step further and says that all bites must be reported – even if no injury is caused. The skin does not have to be penetrated for the report to be required. For example, if a person was playing with a dog and the dog snapped at them and made contact with their skin, they would technically be required to report it, even if there was no injury.
Talk to a Personal Injury Attorney if You Are the Victim of a Dog Bite
In the event you are bitten by a dog, you should contact a personal injury attorney right away. At Law Offices of Fernando D. Vargas we are standing by to answer your questions. Once we know the basics of your case, we can provide a free legal consultation. If you have grounds for a case, we can take it on a contingency basis that assures you do not pay us anything until we win your case. Call us at 909-982-0707 to get started.