Dog Bite Lawyers in Lebanon, MO
Lebanon, MO Personal Injury Lawyers
Call 866-382-4167 for a Free Consultation | Lebanon, MO Dog Attack Attorneys
Dog Bite Lawyers in Lebanon, MO. Dogs can add a great deal of fun, love and companionship to our lives. But when Lebanon, MO dog owners don't keep their dogs in check, it can cause injuries and other damages to innocent people. It is important to get qualified legal representation ASAP after a dog bite. As personal injury lawyers, Halvorsen Klote has helped clients in Lebanon, MO and on both sides of the Mississippi fight insurance companies to get the financial recovery they entitled to. If you have a claim, don't wait another second to call us at 866-382-4167 or contact our Lebanon, MO dog bite lawyers online. Halvorsen Klote represents clients in the Greater St. Louis area and Southern Illinois.
Dog Bite Statistics
Based on data from the American Veterinary Medical Association, there are over four and a half million dog bites each year nationwide. These injuries can carry high medical bills, as medical assistance can cost tens of thousands of dollars when you consider tests, prescriptions and other factors. Each day, nearly 1,000 people go to an emergency room for significant dog bites, and the average medical costs for a dog bite is $20,000.
In 2022, nationwide there were 17,597 dog bite claims, which ended up costing $1.136 billion in compensation.
How to Know if You Have a Dog Bite Case in Lebanon, MO
If a dog bit you for no reason, you may be thinking about whether or not you have a valid claim. The answer depends on a few key factors:
- The extent of your damages — In order to have a viable claim, your injuries your injuries have to have resulted in financial loss. This may include physical injuries that led to medical treatment, as well as less tangible injuries such as PTSD. It's harder to get compensation for small injuries like bruises or scrapes .
- Circumstances surrounding the incident — If you were attacked while you were on public property or on private property you had permission to be on, you may have a case. But, if you were trespassing 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 your attorney to do some "creative lawyering" to help find the policy you need.
- Dog bite laws — The validity of your claim is, to some extent, based on local and state law. Typically, 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 did nothing to provoke or excite the dog or its owner
If you don't know if you have a viable case for legal action, you need to request a consultation with a qualified Lebanon, MO dog bite lawyer. They can evaluate the specifics of your case and advise you on what the best path forward is.
What to Do After a Dog Bite in Lebanon, 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 — Before leaving, take photos of the dog, your injuries, any injuries the dog sustained and where the attack occurred. Get the name and information of the dog's owners and any people who saw what happened, without getting into a confrontation with the owner.
- Get medical treatment — Even if you don't end up going to the emergency room, you need to get checked out by a healthcare professional. Dog bites often lead to infection, and shots or medications may be necessary to get you fully healthy. Furthermore, 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 report the dog bite to your local municipality. This can help to ensure that the dog is quarantined and observed for signs of rabies or other diseases, and that there is documentation of the incident to show the insurance company.
- Be cautious with insurance companies — Insurance companies want to settle claims as quickly and cheaply as possible. Never agree to a settlement before you speak to an attorney, as it may not fully cover the costs of your medical bills and other expenses.
- Call 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 Lebanon, MO.
What Can a Dog Bite Lawyer in Lebanon, MO Do for Me?
A dog bite lawyer in Lebanon, MO can provide a range of services to help you with your case. Here are some of the benefits to hiring an attorney for your claim:
- Analyze your case — A dog bite lawyer can evaluate your case and determine whether you have a valid claim. 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 Lebanon, 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 your case, your Lebanon, MO dog bite lawyer will be available to answer any questions you may have.
- Acquire evidence — A dog bite lawyer can obtain 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 deserve. Insurance companies want to devalue claims, but a dog bite lawyer can fight on your behalf and make sure the compensation covers all of your damages.
- Represent you in court — If your case goes to court, a dog bite lawyer can represent you and advocate for your rights.
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 damages they cause. Each state has their own laws regarding dog bites, and the laws in Missouri and Illinois have most of the most important aspects in common.
Neither state implements a "one bite rule" – where the dog had to have bitten somebody at an earlier date 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 follow "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 you 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
A dog might be considered "man's best friend, but that doesn't mean they're not dangerous. Our dog bite lawyers in Lebanon, MO, know how victims can be affected after an incident. For example, below are a few of the most common dog bite injuries:
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 human. This can be attributed to the dog's environment and interaction with the victim.
Breeds often associated with bites 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 Lebanon, MO?
A dog bite lawyer in Lebanon, MO, will look into a number of special and general damages. Some of these include:
- Medical Expenses — Victims might be able to recover all costs related to medical treatment caused by a dog bite. It's important to document everything (recovery, scarring, prescriptions, etc...) if you want compensation.
- Lost Wages — 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 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 — Though rare, in some circumstances a victim can sue for punitive damages if the dog owner's conduct was intentional or extreme.
- Property Damage — This could 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 Lebanon, 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 Lebanon, 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
Reach out to a Dog Bite Lawyer in Lebanon, MO Now
If you or a loved one have been injured in a dog attack, contact Halvorsen Klote now for a consultation. It is essential to contact a local dog bite lawyer in Lebanon, MO, 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 Lebanon, MO, dog bite lawyers are here to win. Call us today at 866-382-4167 or contact us online for a no risk, no obligation case review.
Our attorneys would be happy to speak with you. We've won numerous cases and you can view our case results here.