Dog Bite Lawyers in Wildwood, MO
Wildwood, MO Personal Injury Lawyers
Call 866-382-4167 for a No Risk, No Obligation Case Evaluation | Wildwood, MO Dog Attack Attorneys
Dog Bite Lawyers in Wildwood, MO. Dogs can add a great deal of fun, love and companionship to our lives. But when Wildwood, MO dog owners don't keep their dogs in check, it can cause injuries and other damages to innocent people. It is important to find experienced legal service ASAP after an incident. As personal injury lawyers, Halvorsen Klote has helped clients in Wildwood, MO and throughout Missouri and Illinois hold negligent dog owners responsible to get the financial recovery they deserve. If you were bitten by a dog, don't hesitate to call us at 866-382-4167 or contact our Wildwood, MO dog bite lawyers online. Halvorsen Klote fights for the rights of the injured in the Greater St. Louis area and Southern Illinois.
Dog Bites: Numbers to Know
According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, there are more than 4.5 million serious dog bites every year nationwide. Dog bites are associated with expensive medical bills, as medical care can quickly add up to tens of thousands of dollars. Every day, almost 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, in the U.S. there were 17,597 dog bite claims, which resulted in $1,136,000,000 in compensation.
Do I Have a Dog Bite Case in Wildwood, MO?
If a dog bit you for no reason, you may be wondering if you have a case for legal action. The answer depends on your unique situation:
- The extent of your damages — If you want to have a valid case, your injuries your injuries have to have resulted in monetary loss. You can generally receive compensation for injuries that led to medical treatment, as well as less tangible injuries like emotional distress. For less serious injuries that didn't require medical treatment, such as a scrape, 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 permission to be on, you may have a case. But, if you were trespassing 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 your attorney to do some "creative lawyering" to help find the policy you need.
- Dog bite laws — Whether or not you're able to make a valid claim for a dog bite also depends on local and state law. Typically, in Missouri and Illinois, you have a dog bite claim 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 are unsure whether or not you have enough to seek compensation, you should speak to a qualified Wildwood, MO dog bite lawyer. They can analyze the circumstances surrounding your dog attack and advise you on your best options for compensation.
What to Do After a Dog Bite in Wildwood, 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:
- Acquire evidence — Before leaving, take pictures of the surrounding scene and any injuries. Ask for the name and information of the dog's owners and any witnesses you can, without getting into a confrontation with the owner.
- Seek medical treatment — Even if the bite doesn't seem significant, you need 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. Furthermore, 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 file a report with 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 corroborate your claims.
- Be cautious with 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 the first offer is likely to be less than what your claim is worth.
- Consult with a personal injury lawyer — A lawyer with experience in dog bite cases can help you to understand your legal rights and options. They can look into the details of your case and help you to determine how much compensation you are entitled to for your dog bite injury in Wildwood, MO.
What Can a Dog Bite Lawyer in Wildwood, MO Do for Me?
A dog bite lawyer in Wildwood, 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 advise 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 Wildwood, MO, and they can help you navigate the injury claims process from filing a claim with the appropriate insurance to going to court if necessary. Throughout your case, your Wildwood, MO dog bite lawyer will be available to answer any questions you have about personal injury claims.
- 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 talk to the dog owner's insurance company for you. Insurance companies often try to pay out as little as possible, but a dog bite lawyer can stand up for you and ensure you get a fair settlement.
- 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
Any law regarding personal injury is designed to keep innocent people from harm and to hold people liable for the damages they cause. Each state makes their own dog bite laws, 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 do something wrong – to determine if an owner can be liable.
Instead, both Missouri and Illinois 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. 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 only major 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
As harmless as they seem, "man's best friend" can be dangerous. Our dog attack lawyers in Wildwood, MO, understand how victims and their families can be affected after an incident. For example, here are some of the most common dog bite injuries:
Too often, people stereotype certain breeds. There are facts to back this up, 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 that are 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 a similar tendency to strike others when they're scared or aggravated.
What Compensation Can I Get for My Dog Bite in Wildwood, MO?
A dog bite lawyer in Wildwood, MO, will look into a variety of damages. Some of these include:
- Medical Expenses — You 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 — Though rare, in certain 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 Wildwood, 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 Wildwood, 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
Call a Dog Bite Lawyer in Wildwood, MO Now
If you've been attacked by a dog, don't hesitate to reach out to Halvorsen Klote today for a consultation. It is important to contact a local dog bite lawyer in Wildwood, MO, right away if there are financial damages. Legal assistance doesn't cost you anything. Here, 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 Wildwood, MO, dog bite lawyers are standing by to win. Call us today at 866-382-4167 or contact us online for a free consultation.
Our attorneys would be happy to discuss your case. We've won numerous cases and you can view our case results here.