Dog Bite Lawyers in Granite City, IL
Granite City, IL Personal Injury Lawyers
Call 866-382-4167 for a Complimentary Case Review | Granite City, IL Dog Bite Attorneys
Dog Bite Lawyers in Granite City, IL. Dogs can add a great deal of fun, love and companionship to our lives. But when Granite City, IL dog owners don't keep their dogs in check, it can cause injuries and other damages to innocent people. It is essential to find experienced legal service as soon as possible after a dog attack. As personal injury lawyers, Halvorsen Klote has helped clients in Granite City, IL and beyond hold negligent dog owners responsible to get the financial recovery they are owed. If you have a claim, don't wait another second to call us at 866-382-4167 or contact our Granite City, IL 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 more than four and a half million dog bites annually in the U.S. Dog bites are associated with expensive medical bills, as medical assistance can cost tens of thousands of dollars when factoring in surgery, prescriptions and other factors. Every day, nearly 1,000 people seek emergency medical treatment for significant dog bites, and the average medical costs for a dog bite is $20,000.
In 2022, across the country there were 17,597 dog bite claims, which ended up costing $1,136,000,000 in compensation.
Do I Have a Dog Bite Case in Granite City, IL?
If you have been bitten by a dog, you may be thinking about whether or not you have a valid claim. The answer depends on a few key factors:
- Severity of your injuries — If you want to have a valid case, your injuries must be significant enough to warrant medical attention. This may include physical injuries that led to medical treatment, as well as less tangible injuries such as post-traumatic stress disorder. For less serious injuries that didn't require medical treatment, such as a scrape, you may not have a claim .
- Circumstances surrounding the incident — If you were bitten while lawfully on public or private property, you may have a case. But, 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 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 locate the coverage you need.
- Dog bite laws — The validity of your claim is, at least to a degree, based on local ordinances and state statutes. Typically, in Missouri and Illinois, you can seek compensation for a dog bite any time you were bitten by another person's dog if:
- You were lawfully allowed to be where you were
- You were acting peacefully and did not provoke the dog
If you don't know if you have enough to make a claim, you should discuss your case with a qualified Granite City, IL dog bite lawyer. They can analyze the specifics of your case and advise you on your best options for compensation.
What to Do After a Dog Bite in Granite City, IL?
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 — As soon as you can afterwards, take pictures of the surrounding scene and any injuries. Ask for the name and information of the dog's owners and any witnesses you can, without getting into an argument with the owner.
- Seek medical treatment — Even if you don't end up going to the emergency room, it's important to get checked out by a doctor or other medical professional. Dog bites often lead to infection, and you may need to receive a tetanus shot or other treatment to prevent complications. Furthermore, you'll need documentation of your injuries in order to receive a financial recovery.
- Report the attack — Depending on where you were bitten, you may need to report the dog bite to 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 incident to show the insurance company.
- Don't believe insurance companies — If the dog's owner has insurance, their insurance company may reach out to you to offer a settlement. Never agree to a settlement without consulting with a lawyer, as it may not fully cover the costs of your medical bills and other expenses.
- Schedule a consultation with a personal injury lawyer — A lawyer who specializes in injury claims can help you to understand your legal rights and options. They can look into the details of your case and help you to determine how much compensation you deserve for your dog bite injury in Granite City, IL.
What Can a Dog Bite Lawyer in Granite City, IL Do for Me?
A dog bite lawyer in Granite City, IL offers expertise and peace of mind. Here are some of the things they can do for you:
- Analyze your case — A dog bite lawyer can go over the details and offer insight into your chances of success. They will review the circumstances surrounding the bite, including the severity of your injuries and the relevant state statutes.
- 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 Granite City, IL, 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 Granite City, IL dog bite lawyer will be by the phone to answer any questions you may have.
- Obtain 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 handle your claim with the dog owner's insurance company to get you the compensation you're entitled to. Insurance companies often try to pay out as little as possible, but a dog bite lawyer can advocate for your rights and ensure you get a fair settlement.
- 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 innocent people from harm and to hold negligent actors accountable for the damages they cause. Each state implements their own laws regarding dog bites, and the laws in Missouri and Illinois are similar.
Neither state implements a "one bite rule" – where you can't hold the owner liable if it's the dog's first aggressive incident – or uses negligence – requiring the dog owner to do something wrong – as the standard in dog bite cases.
Instead, both states adhere to "strict liability", meaning that a dog owner is liable for any damages their dog causes, whether or not the dog has bitten anyone before or if the home owner did anything 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 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 you have two years.
Common Dog Attack Injuries
As harmless as they seem, "man's best friend" can be dangerous. Halvorsen Klote's dog attack attorneys in Granite City, IL, understand how victims and their families can be affected after an incident. For instance, below are some of the most common injuries related to dog bites:
Too often, people stereotype certain dog breeds. There are facts to back this up, but they're not always applicable. Every dog is capable of biting a human. This can be attributed to the dog's environment and interaction with the victim.
Breeds often associated with danger include (in no particular order) bull terriers, cocker spaniels, jack russells, German shepherds, pit bulls, bulldogs, 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 the same tendency to lash out others when they're scared or aggravated.
What Compensation Can I Get for My Dog Bite in Granite City, IL?
A dog bite lawyer in Granite City, IL, will look at a variety of special and general damages. Some of these include:
- Medical Expenses — Victims might be able to recover all expenses related to medical treatment caused by a dog bite. It's important to document everything (recovery, scarring, prescriptions, etc...) if you want reimbursement.
- Lost Time at Work — 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 owner's conduct was intentional or extreme.
- Property Damage — This can include a broken phone, if you crashed a bike, if a dog tore up your siding 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 Granite City, IL personal injury lawyers will ensure that no money is left on the table in your claim.
Other cases we take on and win in Granite City, IL 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
Reach out to a Dog Bite Lawyer in Granite City, IL Now
If you or a loved one have been injured in a dog attack, reach out to Halvorsen Klote now for a consultation. It is important to contact a local dog bite lawyer in Granite City, IL, as soon as possible if there are financial damages. Legal assistance doesn't cost you anything. At Halvorsen Klote, 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 Granite City, IL, dog bite lawyers are ready to help. Call us today at 866-382-4167 or contact us online for a free case review.
Our firm would be more than happy to discuss your case. We've won numerous cases and you can view our testimonials here.