Dog Bite Lawyers in Nixa, MO
Nixa, MO Personal Injury Lawyers
Call 866-382-4167 for a Complimentary Consultation | Nixa, MO Dog Bite Attorneys
Dog Bite Lawyers in Nixa, MO. Dogs can add a great deal of fun, love and companionship to our lives. But when Nixa, MO dog owners don't keep their dogs in check, it can cause injuries and other damages to innocent people. It's important to find qualified legal service ASAP after a dog bite. As personal injury lawyers, Halvorsen Klote has helped clients in Nixa, MO and on both sides of the river hold negligent pet owners liable to get the financial recovery they deserve. If you were attacked by a dog, don't wait another second to call us at 866-382-4167 or contact our Nixa, MO dog bite lawyers online. Halvorsen Klote represents clients in the Greater St. Louis area and Southern Illinois.
Dog Bite Statistics
Based on reporting from the American Veterinary Medical Association, there are more than 4.5 million serious dog bites every year nationwide. These injuries can carry high medical expenses, as medical assistance can quickly add up to tens of thousands of dollars. Each day, almost 1,000 people seek emergency medical treatment 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 resulted in $1,136,000,000 in compensation.
Do I Have a Dog Bite Case in Nixa, MO?
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 viable claim, your injuries must be significant enough to warrant medical attention. You can typically receive compensation for injuries such as puncture wounds, lacerations or broken bones, as well as emotional damages like anxiety. For less significant injuries that didn't require medical treatment, such as a small cut, you may not be able to make a claim .
- The specifics of the attack — If you were bitten while you were on public property or on private property you had access to, you may have a case. However, if you were trespassing or threatened the dog or their owner, you may not have a case.
- Insurance coverages available — Most dog bites are covered under a homeowner's insurance or renter's insurance policy. If not, you may need some "creative lawyering" to help find the policy that covers your injuries.
- Dog bite laws — The validity of your claim is, at least to a degree, 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 lawfully allowed to be where you were
- You were acting peacefully and did not provoke the dog
If you are unsure whether or not you have a viable case for legal action, you need to request a consultation with a qualified Nixa, MO dog bite lawyer. They can look at the specifics of your case and advise you on what the best path forward is.
What to Do After a Dog Bite in Nixa, 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 — As soon as you can afterwards, 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 witnesses you can, without getting into a confrontation with the owner.
- Seek medical attention — Even if you don't end up going to the emergency room, you need to get checked out by a doctor or other medical professional. Dog bites frequently lead 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 the attack transpired, you may need to report the dog bite to the local animal control agency or police department. This can help to ensure that the dog is free of disease and infection, and that there is documentation of the incident to corroborate your claims.
- Don't believe insurance companies — If the dog's owner has insurance, their insurance company may reach out to you to offer a settlement. Be wary of accepting a settlement without consulting with a lawyer, as it may not fully cover the costs of your medical bills and other expenses.
- Call a personal injury lawyer — A lawyer who specializes in injury claims can help you determine the best way to move forward. They can evaluate the circumstances of the incident and help you to determine how much compensation you are owed for your dog bite injury in Nixa, MO.
How a Dog Bite Lawyer in Nixa, MO Can Help
A dog bite lawyer in Nixa, MO can handle all the legal aspects of your case while you focus on healing. 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 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 Nixa, MO, and they can help you navigate the injury claims process from filing an initial insurance claim to going to court if you have to. Throughout the duration of your case, your Nixa, MO dog bite lawyer will be by the phone to answer any questions you have about personal injury claims.
- Gather evidence — A dog bite lawyer can acquire 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 want to minimize claims, 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 lawsuit goes to court, a dog bite lawyer can represent you and advocate for your rights.
Understanding Dog Bite Laws
Any law regarding personal injury is designed to keep the public safe and to hold negligent actors responsible for the harm they cause. Each state implements their own laws regarding dog bites, and the laws in Missouri and Illinois are similar.
Neither state has 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 actively forgo safety precautions – as the standard in dog bite cases.
Instead, both Missouri and Illinois follow "strict liability", meaning that a dog owner is liable 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 only major difference in dog bite law between Missouri and Illinois is in regards to the statute of limitations. In Missouri, you generally 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 Nixa, MO, know how victims can be affected after an incident. For instance, below are a few of the most common injuries related to dog bites:
- Nerve Damage
- Eye Injuries
- Puncture Wounds
- Broken Bones
Often, people stereotype certain dog breeds. There are facts to back this stigma, but they're not always applicable. Every dog is capable of biting 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) 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 a similar tendency to strike others when they're scared or aggravated.
What Compensation Can I Get for My Dog Bite in Nixa, MO?
A dog bite lawyer in Nixa, MO, will look at various types of special and general damages. Some of these include:
- Medical Expenses — You might be able to recover all expenses related to medical treatment caused by a dog bite. It is important to document everything (recovery, scarring, prescriptions, etc...) if you want reimbursement.
- 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 a traumatic experience. Emotional stress, scarring, ongoing fear, and other factors can 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 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 Nixa, 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 Nixa, 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
Schedule a Consultation With a Dog Bite Lawyer in Nixa, MO Today
If you or a loved one have been injured in a dog attack, reach out to Halvorsen Klote today for a consultation. It is important to contact a local dog bite lawyer in Nixa, MO, as soon as possible if there are financial damages. Legal counsel 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 Nixa, MO, dog bite lawyers are ready 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 more than happy to discuss your case. We've won numerous cases and you can view our case results 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.