Dog Bite Lawyer Bismarck, MO

Strong and Compassionate

Bismarck, MO Dog Bite Lawyer

Dog Bite Lawyer in Bismarck, MO. Dogs can be valued members of the family, close companions, and a friend even when times are rough and nobody else is there for you. However, every once in a while man’s best friend is not exactly friendly, and the base animal tendencies of dogs can take over. If that ever happens to you or a loved one, a highly-rated Bismarck, MO dog bite lawyer can be your best friend.

Attorney Amanda Hayden is a veteran Bismarck, MO personal injury lawyer who puts her clients first in everything she does. She has a substantial record of representing her dog bite clients with compassion as well as vigor. If you have been recently bit by a dog in Bismarck, MO, sustained injuries, and are looking to recover damages against that dog’s owner, call an experienced dog bite lawyer at (314) 480-3100, or fill out our online contact form.

What Should I Do After I’ve Been Bit By A Dog?

If you have recently been bit by a dog in Bismarck, MO, you’re most likely in a state of shock and not sure about what to do next, just like any other accident. And as in any other accident, there’s a number of steps you should immediately take after it has happened. Our Bismarck, MO dog bite lawyer asks that you do the following if you’ve recently sustained a dog bite injury:

  • Take pictures. Get out your camera or phone and start snapping pictures of everything around you. If you can, take shots of the dog that bit you: even if they are running away from you and you can thus only get poor-quality photos, local authorities can still use these shots to identify a dog. If the owner of the dog is around, get pictures of them and their info as well. Ask them to provide info about the dog’s veterinarian, tag, and their personal homeowners’ or renter’s insurance. You should also take shots of your immediate surroundings like street signs, cars parked nearby, and house numbers–animal control needs to alert people living nearby about the danger of a dog on the loose.
  • Call 911. Animal Control in your jurisdiction will need to be contacted to begin their tasks after a dog has bit a human. In addition, you should chat with the Bismarck police: not only should you ask for a report for your insurance records, but the police and other Bismarck, MO authorities also keep info on dogs who have bit other people before. If they determine that you are not the first person that dog has bit, their owner may be facing criminal charges.
  • Get medical help. Regardless of the size of your injuries, we suggest calling a doctor or visiting an emergency room or urgent care center without delay. Dog bites can easily lead to infection, so speedy treatment is critical.
  • Call your insurance company. Dog bites are often covered as part of a homeowners’ or renter’s insurance policy, as they are seen as “personal property”. Call them as soon as possible to file a claim so they can assist you with medical bills and other costs. You should also get, if possible, the dog owner’s insurance information.

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Dog Bite Laws In Missouri and Illinois

Since the year 2009, Missouri and Illinois have both operated under the same legal principle in regard to dog bites. Prior to 2009, dog bite law in Missouri operated on what is commonly called the “one bite” rule. What this meant was that dog owners could not be held liable if their dog had never previously bitten another human being–thus giving Missouri dog owners a free bite before they could be held liable for negligence.

However, in 2009 Missouri Revised Statute 237.036 became law, which completely altered how Missouri law viewed dog bites. No longer could dog owners get away with it the first time their pet bit a human being. Now, Missouri joined Illinois and 29 other states (plus the District of Columbia) in adopting the strict liability standard for dog bite injuries.

Under strict liability, dog owners are now responsible for the actions of their pets at all times. If a dog bites someone, without warning, whether on public property or private property they are lawfully allowed to be on, their owner can be sued for all applicable damages. On top of that, Missouri law requires dog owners to pay a fine to the state of no more than $1,000, as well as any civil damages they pay out. Illinois’ law regarding dog bites is called the Animal Control Act, or 510 Illinois Compiled Statutes 5/. It is much more far-reaching than Missouri’s dog bite statute as it also includes sections about what happens to dogs after they bite another human, a part of the law that in Missouri is delegated to county or city-level jurisdictions. Most importantly, it does mandate that dog owners in Illinois are “liable in civil damages to such person [that their dog bit] for the full amount of injury caused”.

What Happens To A Dog That’s Bit Someone?

Both Missouri and Illinois have largely matching requirements they follow after a dog bites a human being. The primary difference is that Illinois’ dog bite mandates are part of the state Animal Control Act, while Missouri’s procedures are determined by each county or city. While this allows for some variation in other matters relating to dogs (for example, some localities in Missouri specifically ban certain dog breeds like pit bulls), by and large the protocol after a dog bite is identical.

Following the report of a dog bite, Bismarck, MO animal control will take the dog into custody for ten days. The dog will be taken to a central location such as an animal shelter or a veterinarian’s office. They will then be observed for that time and inspected for illnesses, most notably rabies. Before they are allowed to exit the facility, a tracking microchip is implanted in the dog, and if their owner has not done so already the animal is spayed or neutered. If animal control has regarded the dog to be safe, they can be released back into the care of their owner, but not before they compensate them for all costs related to the care and feeding of the dog during its time under observation.

After a dog is returned to the custody of its owner, it is also enrolled into a statewide database of “dangerous” (in Missouri) or “vicious” (in Illinois) dogs. Bismarck, MO owners of dogs entered in these categories must keep them in secure pens or kennels, and when out in public they must keep them on a short leash and muzzled. If a dangerous or vicious dog bites someone again, they are once again placed under observation. However, this time owners must file an appeal and show that they can maintain safe custody of their pet: if not, it will be put to sleep.

How Much Can I Get For My Bismarck, MO Dog Bite Lawsuit?

Dog bite injuries can vary in their size, but one thing is for certain: they are no laughing matter. Dogs have strong jaws (research has found that on average, a dog’s bite exerts 320 psi of force, more than double a human’s bite) and sharp teeth, both passed down from their predator ancestors. While, for instance, being bit by a shiba inu will not cause as many injuries as being bit by a German shepherd, the most common injuries our Bismarck, MO dog bite lawyer sees include:

  • Surface-level cuts and bruises
  • Lacerations and puncture wounds
  • Infections from canine saliva
  • Tetanus
  • Broken or cracked bones
  • Avulsion injuries (when skin or body parts are torn off)
  • Rabies
  • Nerve damage
  • Emotional trauma
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

A skilled Bismarck, MO dog bite lawyer can help you recover damages for all of your medical costs and more. In addition to standard hospital or doctor’s expenses, you can get money for any prescription medications, necessary rehab or physical therapy, and any mental health services needed. If the Bismarck dog that bit you also damaged your property–for instance, if you were bit while riding a bike and the dog also broke part of your frame–a Bismarck, MO dog bite lawyer can get you money to repair that, as well as damages for the pain and suffering the debacle of being bit by a dog caused you.

Research has shown that the vast majority of dog bite lawsuits never see a courtroom. Insurance providers do not want to chance having to potentially pay a large jury award, while plaintiffs like settlements as they avoid lengthy court cases and put money in their bank account as soon as possible. Data from the Insurance Information Institute revealed that the median dog bite lawsuit settlement in Missouri is about $47,400, while in Illinois the average is a little higher at $48,100.



Contact A Bismarck, MO Dog Bite Lawyer Who Fights For Her Clients

Lawyer Amanda Hayden knows that getting bit by a dog is an experience no one should be subjected to. She spends time to get to know all her clients and make sure that they don’t have to go through the legal process alone. In addition, she brings a unique combination of both business and legal expertise into the courtroom, which means that she knows how insurance companies work and thus is a dog bite lawyer who fights for your maximum compensation.

If you or someone you know has recently been bit by a dog in Bismarck, MO, do not wait to contact an experienced dog bite lawyer. Call Amanda Hayden today at [clickable-number] or contact her online to set up a free, no-risk case review.

Dog Bite Lawyer