Dog Bite Lawyers in St. Robert, MO
St. Robert, MO Personal Injury Lawyers
Call 866-382-4167 for a No Risk, No Obligation Consultation | St. Robert, MO Dog Bite Law Firm
Dog Bite Lawyers in St. Robert, MO. Dogs can add a great deal of fun, love and companionship to our lives. But when St. Robert, 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 qualified legal counsel as soon as possible after a dog bite. As personal injury lawyers, Halvorsen Klote has helped clients in St. Robert, MO and throughout Missouri and Illinois hold negligent pet owners liable to get the financial recovery they are owed. If you were attacked by a dog, don't hesitate to call us at 866-382-4167 or contact our St. Robert, 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 data from the American Veterinary Medical Association, there are over four and a half million dog bites every year across the country. These injuries can carry high medical costs, as medical assistance can quickly add up to tens of thousands of dollars. Each day, nearly 1,000 people visit an emergency room for serious dog bites, and the average dog bite-related hospital stay is $18,200.
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 St. Robert, MO?
If a dog attacked you for no reason, you may be wondering whether or not you can seek compensation from the dog owner. The answer depends on your unique situation:
- The extent of your damages — In order to have a viable claim, your injuries your injuries have to have resulted in monetary damages. This may include physical injuries that led to medical treatment, as well as less tangible injuries like emotional distress. 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 incident — If you were bitten while lawfully on public or private property, you may have a case. However, 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 coverage you need.
- Dog bite laws — Whether or not you're able to make a valid claim for a dog bite also depends 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 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 should speak to a qualified St. Robert, MO dog bite lawyer. They can evaluate the specifics of your case and advise you on what the best path forward is.
What Should I Do if I'm Bit by a Dog in St. Robert, 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:
- Acquire 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. Ask for the name and information of the dog's owners and any witnesses you can, but do not start a confrontation with the owner.
- Seek medical attention — Even if you don't end up going to the emergency room, it's important to get evaluated by a healthcare professional. Dog bites can be prone to infection, and shots or medications may be necessary to get you fully healthy. Additionally, you'll need documentation of your injuries in order to receive compensation.
- Report the attack — Depending on where you were when you were attacked, 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 documentation of the incident to back up your claims.
- Be cautious with 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 the first offer is likely to be less than the true value of your claim.
- Schedule a consultation with 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 how much compensation you deserve for your dog bite injury in St. Robert, MO.
What Can a Dog Bite Lawyer in St. Robert, MO Do for Me?
A dog bite lawyer in St. Robert, 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 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 St. Robert, MO, and they can help you navigate the injury claims process from filing an initial insurance claim to going to trial if you have to. Throughout your case, your St. Robert, MO dog bite lawyer will be by the phone to answer any questions you may have.
- Acquire evidence — A dog bite lawyer can gather 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 talk to the dog owner's insurance company to get you the compensation you're entitled to. 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 lawsuit 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 the public safe and to hold negligent actors accountable 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 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 – to determine if an owner can be liable.
Instead, both states adhere to "strict liability", in which a dog owner can be sued for a dog bite even if the owner did nothing 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 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 bite attorneys in St. Robert, MO, know how victims 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 breeds. There are facts to back this stigma, but they're not always applicable. Any dog is capable of biting someone. This can be attributed to the dog's environment and interaction with the victim.
Breeds that are often associated with danger 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 keep in mind 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 St. Robert, MO?
A dog bite lawyer in St. Robert, MO, will look at a variety of special and general damages. Some of these include:
- Medical Expenses — Victims may 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 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 can include a broken phone, if you crashed a bike, if a dog tore up your siding 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 St. Robert, MO personal injury lawyers will ensure that no money is left on the table in your claim.
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- Premises Liability Attorneys
- Automobile Injury Attorney
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Schedule a Consultation With a Dog Bite Lawyer in St. Robert, MO Now
If you've been attacked by a dog, contact Halvorsen Klote now for a consultation. It's crucial to contact a local dog bite lawyer in St. Robert, MO, right away 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 there aren't any upfront costs and you only pay if we win the case. Our St. Robert, MO, dog bite lawyers are standing by to win. Call us today at 866-382-4167 or contact us online for a no risk, no obligation consultation.
Our attorneys would be happy to discuss your case. We've won numerous cases and you can view our testimonials here.