Dog Bite Lawyers in Creve Coeur, MO
Creve Coeur, MO Personal Injury Lawyers
Call 866-382-4167 for a No Risk, No Obligation Case Evaluation | Creve Coeur, MO Dog Bite Attorneys
Dog Bite Lawyers in Creve Coeur, MO. Dogs can add a great deal of fun, love and companionship to our lives. But when Creve Coeur, MO dog owners don't keep their dogs in check, it can cause injuries and other damages to innocent people. It is important to find experienced legal service ASAP after an incident. As personal injury lawyers, Halvorsen Klote has helped clients in Creve Coeur, MO and throughout Missouri and Illinois fight insurance companies to get the compensation they are owed. If you have a claim, don't wait another second to call us at 866-382-4167 or contact our Creve Coeur, MO dog bite lawyers online. Halvorsen Klote represents clients in the Greater St. Louis area and Southern Illinois.
Dog Bite Statistics
According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, there are more than four and a half million dog bites every year across the country. Dog bites can carry expensive medical expenses, as medical care can quickly add up to tens of thousands of dollars. Each day, nearly 1,000 people seek emergency medical treatment for serious dog bites, and the average dog bite-related hospital stay is $18,200.
In 2022, across the country there were 17,597 dog bite claims, which resulted in $1.136 billion in compensation.
How to Know if You Have a Dog Bite Claim in Creve Coeur, MO
If a dog bit you for no reason, you may be wondering whether or not you can seek compensation for your injuries. The answer depends on the circumstances surrounding the attack:
- Severity of your injuries — If you want to have a viable claim, your injuries your injuries have to have resulted in monetary damages. This may include physical injuries that led to medical treatment, as well as emotional damages such as post-traumatic stress disorder. It's harder to get compensation for small injuries like bruises or scrapes .
- The specifics of the attack — If you were bitten while lawfully on public or private property, you may have a case. However, if you were there illegally or threatened the dog or their owner, you likely don't have a case.
- Insurance coverages available — For more serious dog bite cases, you'll likely need to find an insurance policy that covers any damages the dog causes. Most times, this will be under a homeowner's insurance or renter's insurance policy. If not, you may need your attorney to do some "creative lawyering" to help locate the policy you need.
- Dog bite laws — Whether or not you're able to make a valid claim for a dog bite also depends on local and state law. Generally, in Missouri and Illinois, you have a dog bite claim any time you were bitten by another person's dog if:
- You were at the location legally
- You were acting peacefully and did not provoke the dog
If you are unsure whether or not you have enough to make a claim, you should speak to a qualified Creve Coeur, MO dog bite lawyer. They can analyze the circumstances surrounding your dog attack and advise you on what the best path forward is.
What Do I Do if I'm Bit by a Dog in Creve Coeur, MO?
If you've been attacked by a dog, it's important to take certain steps to protect your health and your legal rights. While it can be hard to keep your wits about you, after being bitten by a dog you should:
- Gather evidence — While you're still at the scene, take pictures of the dog, your injuries, any injuries the dog sustained and where the attack occurred. Ask for the name and information of the dog's owners and any people who saw what happened, without getting into a confrontation with the owner.
- Seek medical attention — Even if the bite doesn't seem serious, you need to get your injuries treated by a doctor or other medical professional. Dog bites can be prone to infection, and you may need to receive a tetanus shot or other treatment to prevent complications. Additionally, you'll need proof that you were injured in order to make a claim.
- Report the attack — Depending on where you were when you were attacked, you may need to file a report with your local municipality. This can help to ensure that the dog is free of disease and infection, and that there is documentation of the attack to back up your claims.
- Don't believe insurance companies — Insurance companies want to settle claims as quickly and cheaply as possible. Never agree to a settlement without consulting with a lawyer, as the first offer is likely to be less than the true value of your claim.
- Reach out to a personal injury lawyer — A lawyer with experience in dog bite cases can help you determine the best way to move forward. They can look into the details of your case and help you to determine the true value of your dog bite injury in Creve Coeur, MO.
How a Dog Bite Lawyer in Creve Coeur, MO Can Help
A dog bite lawyer in Creve Coeur, MO can handle all the legal aspects of your case while you focus on healing. Here are some of the things they can do for you:
- Analyze your case — A dog bite lawyer can evaluate your case and offer insight into your chances of success. They will review the circumstances surrounding the bite, including the severity of your injuries and any relevant laws.
- Help you understand your rights — A dog bite lawyer can help you understand the injury claim process and what you're entitled to. They can explain the laws that govern dog bites in Creve Coeur, MO, and they can help you navigate the legal system from filing an initial insurance claim to going to trial if you have to. Throughout the duration of your case, your Creve Coeur, MO dog bite lawyer will be there to answer any questions you may have.
- Obtain evidence — A dog bite lawyer can obtain evidence to support your claim. This may include medical records, witness statements and photographs of your injuries.
- Negotiate with insurance companies — A dog bite lawyer can talk to the dog owner's insurance company on your behalf. Insurance companies want to devalue claims, but a dog bite lawyer can stand up for you and make sure the compensation covers all of your damages.
- Represent you in court — If your claim goes to court, a dog bite lawyer can present your case to a judge and jury and argue for the compensation you deserve.
Understanding Dog Bite Laws
Any law regarding personal injury is designed to keep innocent people from harm and to hold negligent actors liable for the harm they cause. Each state makes their own dog bite laws, and the laws in Missouri and Illinois are similar.
Neither state implements a "one bite rule" – where the dog had to have bitten somebody before for the owner to be liable – or uses negligence – requiring the dog owner to do something wrong – to determine if an owner can be liable.
Instead, both Missouri and Illinois operate under the doctrine of "strict liability", in which a dog owner can be sued for a dog bite even if the owner did nothing wrong. Unlike other forms of liability, such as negligence, strict liability does not require the victim to prove that the dog owner did anything wrong. Instead, the mere fact that the dog bit you is enough to establish liability.
The dog bite laws in each state can be found in Missouri Revised Statute §273.036 and 510 ILCS 5/1.
The main difference in dog bite law between Missouri and Illinois is in regards to the statute of limitations. In Missouri, you typically have five years to file a dog bite claim, while in Illinois dog bite claims must be filed within two years.
Common Dog Attack Injuries
A dog might be considered "man's best friend, but that doesn't mean they're not dangerous. Halvorsen Klote's dog bite attorneys in Creve Coeur, MO, know how victims can be affected. For example, below are some of the most common injuries related to dog bites:
- Nerve Damage
- Facial Injuries
- Puncture Wounds
Too often, people stereotype certain dog breeds. There are facts to back this stigma, but they're not always applicable. Any dog is able to bite a person. This can be attributed to the dog's environment and interaction with the victim.
Breeds often associated with bites include (in no particular order) bulldogs, pit bulls, shepherds, terriers, pekingese, and even chihuahuas. The size and age of the dog rarely matters; the important thing to keep in mind is how a dog was raised and how you interact with the dog. People have a similar tendency to attack others when they're scared or aggravated.
What Compensation Can I Get for My Dog Bite in Creve Coeur, MO?
A dog bite lawyer in Creve Coeur, MO, will look at a variety of special and general damages. Some of these include:
- Medical Expenses — You may be able to recover all costs related to medical treatment caused by a bite. It is important to document everything (recovery, scarring, prescriptions, etc...) if you want compensation.
- Lost Time at Work — If you or your child have been injured because of a dog, you might lose your earning capacity for a certain period of time. The money you lost from not working can be reimbursed to you.
- Pain and Suffering — Being attacked by a dog can be a traumatic experience. Emotional stress, scarring, ongoing fear, and other factors have lifelong consequences. These types of non-economic damages are factored into personal injury settlements and verdicts.
- Punitive Damages — Although rare, in certain circumstances a victim can sue for punitive damages if the owner's conduct was intentional or extreme.
- Property Damage — This can include damages to your home, your clothes, a bike or motorcycle, your phone and other things that might've been damaged during an attack.
One of the most important aspects of a dog bite lawyer's job is to accurately value how much your personal injury claim is worth. At Halvorsen Klote, our Creve Coeur, MO personal injury lawyers will ensure that no money is left on the table in your claim.
Other cases we take on and win in Creve Coeur, MO include:
- Bike Wreck Lawyer
- What to Do After a Car Accident
- Premises Liability Attorneys
- Automobile Injury Attorney
- Motorcycle Accidents Attorney
- Lawyer for Bicycle Accident
- Pedestrian Accident Lawyer
- Injury Claim Lawyer
- Drunk Driving Accident Lawyers
- Auto Crash Attorney
Call a Dog Bite Lawyer in Creve Coeur, MO Now
If you or a loved one have been injured in a dog attack, don't hesitate to reach out to Halvorsen Klote today for a consultation. It is essential to contact a local dog bite lawyer in Creve Coeur, MO, right away if there are financial damages. Legal representation doesn't cost you anything. Here, we charge on a contingency fee basis. This means that if we don't win your case you don't owe us anything and there aren't any upfront fees. Our Creve Coeur, MO, dog bite lawyers are standing by to win. Call us today at 866-382-4167 or contact us online for a free case review.
Our attorneys would be happy to discuss your case. We've won numerous cases and you can view our testimonials here.
Attorney at Law
Joel Halvorsen and his partner Greg Klote founded the Halvorsen Klote law firm on the principle that injured people and their families should have access to the same quality legal representation as large insurance companies.
Attorney at Law
Greg Klote is a partner and founder of Halvorsen Klote.
Greg has successfully fought for people who were injured through no fault of their own. He became a lawyer to help make a difference in the lives of those who have been wronged and treated unfairly.