Wild Animal BitesUpdated on Sunday 12th February 2017
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The state of California has strict laws for pet bites, like dog bite injuries. This is one of the personal injury cases in which the owner of the animal has strict liability for the actions of his or her pet, even if the animal hasn’t previously been dangerous. The law concerning wild animal ownership in Los Angeles is strictly regulated by California State Law and the owner of an exotic animal that attacks another individual can face serious accusations and even risk imprisonment.
Our Los Angeles personal injury attorneys can help you if you have been the victim of a wild animal owned by another individual.
Laws governing the possession of exotic animals in California
The California Department of Fish and Game regulated the types of exotic pets individuals are allowed to own in the state. The list of animals that cannot be kept as pets includes first generation wolf and dog hybrids, chimpanzees, elephants, caimans and alligators, tigers and other big felines, African clawed frogs, bats, owls, skunks, raccoons, piranhas, ferrets, hedgehogs and others.
Individuals who are in control of wild animals should not intentionally free or allow the animals to escape except for those situations permitted by state authorities. Other regulations governing wild animals in California include:
- the entry,
- importation transportation,
- the release of any wild animals that have been brought into the state.
Permits can be issued for bringing restricted species into the state of California and for the care of such animals, provided that the caretaker has had experience with wild animals.
According to the law in California, all bites that come from animals that are susceptible to rabies must be reported. The incident must be reported to a local health officer and it must include identification details for the bite victim, details about the animal that caused the injury as well as information about the circumstances in which the incident took place (the date and time and the medical treatment that was administered immediately afterward).
Liability for wild animal bites
The owner of a wild animal kept as pet faces greater liabilities if another individual is attacked by the animal, than the owner of a dog in California. If the principle of negligence does not apply in the case of animals, meaning that the owner if fully responsible for the acts of the animal, individuals who own exotic pets are liable for the actions of their wild animals even if they take precautionary measures (like building fences or confining the animal). The owner of a wild animal should be aware that it is not domesticated and therefore it can cause personal injuries unless retrained. In some cases, the defendant can argue in court that the plaintiff has taken conscious acts to provoke the animal. Such allegations must be proved with enough evidence.
Individuals who violate the California laws concerning wild animals are subject to civil penalties of no more than 10,000 $ for each violation. The owner of an exotic pet must also observe the requirements for housing that animal.
Our Los Angeles personal injury lawyers can help you obtain compensations for the damages caused by a wild animal bite. We can also help you in dog bite cases.
You can contact our Los Angeles personal injury attorneys if you need more information about this type of accident.