Dog Bite Lawyers in Eldon, MO
Eldon, MO Personal Injury Lawyers
Call 866-382-4167 for a No Risk, No Obligation Consultation | Eldon, MO Dog Bite Law Firm
Dog Bite Lawyers in Eldon, MO. Dogs can add a great deal of fun, love and companionship to our lives. But when Eldon, MO dog owners don't keep their dogs in check, it can cause injuries and other damages to innocent people. It is crucial to find qualified legal counsel as soon as possible after an incident. As personal injury lawyers, Halvorsen Klote has helped clients in Eldon, MO and beyond hold negligent pet owners accountable to get the compensation they deserve. If you were attacked by a dog, don't wait another second to call us at 866-382-4167 or contact our Eldon, MO dog bite lawyers online. Halvorsen Klote fights for the rights of the injured in the Greater St. Louis area and Southern Illinois.
How Common Are Dog Bites?
According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, there are over 4.5 million serious dog bites each year across the country. These injuries are associated with expensive medical bills, as medical care can cost tens of thousands of dollars when factoring in surgery, prescriptions and other factors. Each day, almost 1,000 people go to an emergency room for serious dog bites, and the average dog bite-related hospital stay is $18,200.
In 2022, in the United States there were 17,597 dog bite claims, which ended up costing $1.136 billion in compensation.
Do I Have a Dog Bite Case in Eldon, MO?
If a dog attacked you for no reason, you may be wondering if you have a case for legal action. The answer depends on the circumstances surrounding the attack:
- Severity of your injuries — In order to have a viable case, your injuries your injuries have to have resulted in monetary loss. You can typically receive compensation for injuries such as puncture wounds, lacerations or broken bones, as well as emotional damages like emotional distress. For less significant injuries that didn't require medical treatment, such as a scrape, you may not be able to make a claim .
- Circumstances surrounding the incident — If you were attacked while lawfully on public or private property, you may have a case. But, if you were there illegally or if you provoked the dog, you may not have a case.
- Insurance coverages available — For more serious dog bite cases, you'll probably need to find an insurance policy that covers the injuries a specific dog causes. Most times, this will be under a homeowner's insurance or renter's insurance policy. If not, you may need some "creative lawyering" to help find the coverage that covers your injuries.
- Dog bite laws — The validity of your claim is, to some extent, dictated by local and state law. Typically, in Missouri and Illinois, you can seek compensation for a dog bite any time you were bitten by someone else's dog if:
- You were at the location legally
- You did nothing to provoke or threaten the dog or its owner
If you don't know if you have enough to seek compensation, you should request a consultation with a qualified Eldon, MO dog bite lawyer. They can analyze the circumstances surrounding your dog attack and advise you on what the best path forward is.
What to Do After a Dog Bite in Eldon, MO?
If you've been bitten 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 — Before leaving, take pictures of the surrounding scene and any injuries. Get the name and information of the dog's owners and any witnesses you can, without getting into an argument with the owner.
- Get medical attention — Even if you don't think your injuries are serious, it's important to get your injuries treated by a doctor or other medical professional. Dog bites can be prone to infection, and shots or medications may be necessary to get you fully healthy. Additionally, you'll need proof that you were injured in order to make a claim.
- Report the attack — Depending on where you were bitten, 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 an official record of the attack to corroborate your claims.
- Be cautious with insurance companies — Insurance companies want to settle claims as quickly and cheaply as possible. Be wary of accepting a settlement before you speak to an attorney, as the first offer is likely to be less than the true value of your claim.
- Consult with a personal injury lawyer — A lawyer with experience in injury claims 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 Eldon, MO.
What Can a Dog Bite Lawyer in Eldon, MO Do for Me?
A dog bite lawyer in Eldon, MO offers expertise and peace of mind. Here are some of the benefits to hiring an attorney for your claim:
- Evaluate your case — A dog bite lawyer can evaluate your case and offer insight into your chances of success. They will review all of the evidence and how it fits with law and case precedent.
- Help you understand your rights — A dog bite lawyer can help you understand your legal options. They can explain the laws that govern dog bites in Eldon, MO, and they can help you navigate the legal system from filing an initial insurance claim to going to trial if necessary. Throughout your case, your Eldon, MO dog bite lawyer will be there to answer any questions you may have.
- Acquire evidence — A dog bite lawyer can gather evidence to support your claim. This may include medical records, witness statements and any surveillance footage or other evidence.
- Negotiate with insurance companies — A dog bite lawyer can negotiate with the dog owner's insurance company for you. Insurance companies often try to pay out as little as possible, but a dog bite lawyer can advocate for your rights and ensure the compensation covers all of your damages.
- Represent you in court — If your case 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
Dog bite laws, and laws regarding personal injury in general, are designed to keep the public safe and to hold people accountable for the harm they cause. Each state has their own laws regarding dog bites, and the laws in Missouri and Illinois are similar.
Neither state has 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 actively forgo safety precautions – to determine if an owner can be liable.
Instead, both states follow "strict liability", meaning that 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 caused harm is enough to establish liability.
The main difference in dog bite law between Missouri and Illinois has to do with the statute of limitations. In Missouri, you generally 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 lawyers in Eldon, MO, understand how victims can be affected after an incident. For example, below are a few of the most common injuries related to dog bites:
Often, people stereotype certain breeds. There are facts to back this up, but they're not always applicable. Any dog is capable of biting someone. This can be attributed to the dog's environment and interaction with the victim.
Breeds often associated with danger 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 lash out others when they're scared or aggravated.
What Compensation Can I Get for My Dog Bite in Eldon, MO?
A dog bite lawyer in Eldon, MO, will look at various types of special and general damages. These include:
- Medical Expenses — Victims might 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 Wages — If you've been bitten by 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 traumatic. 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 dog owner's conduct was intentional or extreme.
- Property Damage — This may include damages to your home, your clothes, a bike or motorcycle, your phone and other things that may have 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 Eldon, 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 Eldon, MO include:
- Fatal Car Accident Lawyer
- Auto Accident Attorney
- 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
Speak To a Dog Bite Lawyer in Eldon, MO Today
If you've been attacked by a dog, reach out to Halvorsen Klote now for a consultation. It is essential to contact a local dog bite lawyer in Eldon, MO, right away if there are financial damages. Legal counsel doesn't cost you anything. At Halvorsen Klote, we charge on a contingency fee basis. This means that there aren't any upfront costs and you only pay if we win the case. Our Eldon, MO, dog bite lawyers are ready to help. Call us today at 866-382-4167 or contact us online for a complimentary consultation.
Our lawyers would be more than happy to discuss your case. We've won numerous cases and you can view our case results here.