Dog Bite Lawyers in Oakville, MO
Oakville, MO Personal Injury Lawyers
Call 866-382-4167 for a No Risk, No Obligation Case Review | Oakville, MO Dog Bite Attorneys
Dog Bite Lawyers in Oakville, MO. Dogs can add a great deal of fun, love and companionship to our lives. But when Oakville, 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 experienced legal representation ASAP after a dog attack. As personal injury lawyers, Halvorsen Klote has helped clients in Oakville, MO and beyond fight insurance companies to get the compensation they deserve. If you have a claim, don't hesitate to call us at 866-382-4167 or contact our Oakville, MO dog bite lawyers online. Halvorsen Klote represents clients in the Greater St. Louis area and Southern Illinois.
How Common Are Dog Bites?
Based on reporting from the American Veterinary Medical Association, there are over four and a half million dog bites each year across the country. Dog bites can carry expensive medical costs, as medical assistance can quickly add up to tens of thousands of dollars. Every 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, 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 Oakville, MO?
If you have been bitten by a dog, you may be wondering whether or not you have a valid claim. The answer depends on your unique situation:
- The extent of your damages — In order to have a valid claim, your injuries must be significant enough to warrant medical attention. This may include physical injuries such as puncture wounds, lacerations or broken bones, as well as less tangible injuries 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 attacked 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 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 you need.
- Dog bite laws — The validity of your claim is, at least to a degree, based on local and state law. Generally, 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 excite the dog or its owner
If you are unsure whether or not you have enough to make a claim, you should discuss your case with a qualified Oakville, MO dog bite lawyer. They can evaluate the specifics of your case and advise you on your best options for compensation.
What Should I Do if I'm Bit by a Dog in Oakville, 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:
- Obtain evidence — While you're still at the scene, take photos of the dog, your injuries, any injuries the dog sustained and where the attack occurred. Get the contact info of the dog's owners and any witnesses you can, without getting into an argument with the owner.
- Get medical treatment — Even if the bite doesn't seem significant, you need to get evaluated by a doctor or other medical professional. Dog bites often 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 receive a financial recovery.
- Report the attack — Depending on where you were bitten, you may need to file a report with the local animal control agency or police department. This can help to ensure that the dog is observed to see if they're a danger to others, and that there is an official record of the incident to show the insurance company.
- Don't believe 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 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 evaluate the circumstances of the incident and help you to determine how much compensation you deserve for your dog bite injury in Oakville, MO.
How a Dog Bite Lawyer in Oakville, MO Can Help
A dog bite lawyer in Oakville, MO can provide a range of services to help you with your case. Here are some of the things they can do for you:
- Analyze your case — A dog bite lawyer can evaluate your case and tell you 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 the injury claim process and what you're entitled to. They can explain the laws that govern dog bites in Oakville, MO, and they can help you navigate the injury claims process from filing a claim with the appropriate insurance to going to trial if necessary. Throughout your case, your Oakville, MO dog bite lawyer will be there to answer any questions you have about personal injury claims.
- Acquire evidence — A dog bite lawyer can gather evidence that backs up your side of the story. 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 for you. Insurance companies want to avoid paying 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 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 people accountable for the harm 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 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 do something wrong – to determine if an owner can be liable.
Instead, both states adhere to "strict liability", meaning that a dog owner can be sued for any damages their dog causes, whether or not the dog has a history of aggression or or if the home owner did anything wrong. Strict liability recognizes that dog owners are responsible for the behavior of their dog, while allowing dog bite victims who did nothing wrong to get full compensation without having to prove wrongdoing on the part of the dog owner.
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 attorneys in Oakville, MO, know how victims and their families can be affected. For instance, here are a few of the most common injuries related to dog bites:
- Nerve Damage
- Facial Injuries
- Puncture Wounds
- Mental Anguish
Often, people stereotype certain breeds. There are facts to back this stigma, but they're not always applicable. Every dog is capable of biting a human. This can be caused by how the person interacts with the dog and the environment it was raised in.
Breeds that are 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 remember 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 Oakville, MO?
A dog bite lawyer in Oakville, MO, will look at various types of damages. These include:
- Medical Expenses — Victims may be able to recover all expenses 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 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 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 Oakville, 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 Oakville, 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
Speak To a Dog Bite Lawyer in Oakville, MO Now
If you've been attacked by a dog, contact Halvorsen Klote now for a consultation. It is essential to contact a local dog bite lawyer in Oakville, 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 Oakville, MO, dog bite lawyers are ready to win. Call us today at 866-382-4167 or contact us online for a complimentary case review.
Our firm 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.