Dog Bite Lawyers in Potosi, MO
Potosi, MO Personal Injury Lawyers
Call 866-382-4167 for a Complimentary Case Evaluation | Potosi, MO Dog Bite Law Firm
Dog Bite Lawyers in Potosi, MO. Dogs can add a great deal of fun, love and companionship to our lives. But when Potosi, MO dog owners don't keep their dogs in check, it can cause injuries and other damages to innocent people. It is crucial to get qualified legal representation ASAP after an accident. As personal injury lawyers, Halvorsen Klote has helped clients in Potosi, MO and throughout Missouri and Illinois hold negligent pet owners accountable to get the compensation they are owed. If you have a claim, don't hesitate to call us at 866-382-4167 or contact our Potosi, MO dog bite lawyers online. Halvorsen Klote represents clients in the Greater St. Louis area and Southern Illinois.
Dog Bite Statistics
According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, there are more than four and a half million dog bites every year nationwide. These injuries can carry expensive medical costs, as medical care can quickly add up to tens of thousands of dollars. Every day, almost 1,000 people visit an emergency room for serious 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 resulted in $1,136,000,000 in compensation.
Do I Have a Dog Bite Case in Potosi, MO?
If a dog attacked you for no reason, you may be thinking about if you have a case for legal action. The answer depends on a few key factors:
- The extent of your damages — In order to have a valid case, your injuries your injuries have to have resulted in financial loss. You can generally receive compensation for injuries such as puncture wounds, lacerations or broken bones, as well as emotional injuries like PTSD. For less serious injuries that didn't require medical treatment, such as a bruise, you may not have a claim .
- Circumstances surrounding the incident — 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 there illegally or if you provoked the dog, 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 locate the policy that covers your damages.
- Dog bite laws — The validity of your claim is, at least to a degree, dictated by local ordinances and state statutes. 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 were acting peacefully and did not provoke the dog
If you don't know if you have enough to seek compensation, you need to speak to a qualified Potosi, MO 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 Potosi, 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 surrounding scene and any injuries. Get the contact info of the dog's owners and any people who saw the attack, but do not start a confrontation with the owner.
- Seek medical treatment — Even if the bite doesn't seem significant, you need to get your injuries treated 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. Additionally, you'll need proof that you were injured in order to make a claim.
- Report the bite — Depending on where you were bitten, 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 quarantined and observed for signs of rabies or other diseases, and that there is an official record of the incident to back up your claims.
- Don't believe 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.
- Schedule a consultation with a personal injury lawyer — An attorney 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 the true value of your dog bite injury in Potosi, MO.
What Can a Dog Bite Lawyer in Potosi, MO Do for Me?
A dog bite lawyer in Potosi, 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:
- 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 your legal rights. They can explain the laws that govern dog bites in Potosi, MO, and they can help you navigate the injury claims process from filing an initial insurance claim to going to trial if necessary. Throughout your case, your Potosi, 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 that corroborates 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 handle your claim with the dog owner's insurance company to get you the compensation you deserve. 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 innocent people from harm and to hold people liable for the damages 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 operate under the doctrine of "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 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 dog bite laws in each state can be found in Missouri Revised Statute §273.036 and 510 ILCS 5/1.
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 dog bite claims must be filed within two years.
Common Dog Attack Injuries
As harmless as they seem, "man's best friend" can be dangerous. Halvorsen Klote's dog attack lawyers in Potosi, MO, understand how victims and their families can be affected after an incident. For example, below are a few of the most common injuries related to dog bites:
- Nerve Damage
- Facial Injuries
- Puncture Wounds
Too often, people stereotype certain dog breeds. There are facts to back this stigma, but it's not always the case. Every dog is able to bite a person. This can be caused by how the person interacts with the dog and the environment it was raised in.
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 remember is how a dog was raised and how you interact with the dog. People have the same tendency to strike others when they're scared or aggravated.
What Compensation Can I Get for My Dog Bite in Potosi, MO?
A dog bite lawyer in Potosi, MO, will look into various types of damages. These include:
- Medical Expenses — Victims might 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 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 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 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 Potosi, 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 Potosi, 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
Call a Dog Bite Lawyer in Potosi, MO Now
If you or a loved one have been injured in a dog attack, don't hesitate to reach out to Halvorsen Klote now for a consultation. It's crucial to contact a local dog bite lawyer in Potosi, MO, as soon as possible if there are financial damages. Legal representation 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 Potosi, MO, dog bite lawyers are here to help. Call us today at 866-382-4167 or contact us online for a complimentary case review.
Our attorneys would be happy to discuss your case. We've won numerous cases and you can view our testimonials 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.