Dog Bite Lawyer Cedar Hill, MO

Strong and Compassionate

Cedar Hill, MO Dog Bite Lawyer

Dog Bite Lawyer in Cedar Hill, MO. Dogs can be beloved members of the family, close companions, and a friend even when times are difficult and no one else is there for you. However, every so often man’s best friend is not so friendly, and the base animal instincts of dogs can take over. If that ever happens to you or a friend, a top Cedar Hill, MO dog bite lawyer can be your best friend.

Attorney Amanda Hayden is an experienced Cedar Hill, MO personal injury lawyer who puts her clients first in all that 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 Cedar Hill, MO, sustained injuries, and are wanting 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 Cedar Hill, MO, you’re probably in a state of trauma and not sure about what to do next, just like any other accident. And just like any other accident, there’s a number of steps you should immediately take after your accident has happened. Our Cedar Hill, MO dog bite lawyer asks that you do the following if you’ve recently sustained a dog bite injury:

  • Take photos. Get out your camera or phone and start snapping photographs of everything around you. If you can, take photos of the dog that bit you: even if the dog is 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 tell people living nearby about the danger of a unleashed dog.
  • Call 911. Animal Control in your local area will need to be contacted to begin their tasks after a dog has bit a human. In addition, you should call the Cedar Hill police: not only should you get a report for your insurance records, but the police and other Cedar Hill, MO authorities also keep records of 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 as soon as you can. Dog bites can easily lead to infection, so quick treatment is crucial.
  • Call your insurance company. Dog bites are usually covered as part of a homeowners’ or renter’s insurance policy, as they are considered “personal property”. Call them as soon as you can to file a claim so they can help you with medical bills and other costs. You should also acquire, 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 used the same legal principle when it comes 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 not previously bitten another human being–thus granting Missouri dog owners a free bite before they could be sued for negligence.

However, in 2009 Missouri Revised Statute 237.036 came into force, which completely altered how Missouri judges viewed dog bites. No longer could dog owners get away with it the first time their pet bit another person. Instead, 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 liable for the actions of their pets at all times. If a dog bites someone, without provocation, whether on public property or private property they are lawfully allowed to be on, their owner can be sued for all applicable damages. In addition, Missouri law mandates dog owners to pay a fine to the state of no more than $1,000, in addition to 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 law 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 governments. 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 mostly the same procedures 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 policies are determined by each county or city. While this allows for some differences in other matters relating to dogs (for example, some cities in Missouri explicitly ban certain dog breeds like pit bulls), by and large the protocol following a dog bite is identical.

After the report of a dog bite, Cedar Hill, MO animal control will impound the dog 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 watched for that time and checked for illnesses, most notably rabies. Before they are allowed to leave the facility, a tracking microchip is inserted into the dog, and if their owner has not done so already the pet is spayed or neutered. If animal control has regarded the dog to be safe, they can be sent back into the care of their owner, but not before they cover all costs related to the care and feeding of the dog during its time under observation.

Once a dog is back in the custody of its owner, it is also enrolled into a statewide database of “dangerous” (in Missouri) or “vicious” (in Illinois) dogs. Cedar Hill, MO owners of dogs entered in these categories must keep them in secure pens or kennels, and when out in public they are obligated to keep them on a short leash and muzzled. If a dangerous or vicious dog bites another person again, they are placed back under observation. However, this time owners must file an appeal and prove that they can maintain safe ownership of their pet: otherwise, it will be euthanized.

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

Dog bite injuries can differ in their severity, but one thing is for certain: they are no joke. Dogs have strong jaws (studies have found that on average, a dog’s bite exerts 320 psi of force, more than twice a human’s bite) and sharp teeth, both passed down from their predator forebearers. While, for instance, being bit by a chihuahua will not cause as many injuries as being bit by a German shepherd, the most common injuries our Cedar Hill, 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 Cedar Hill, MO dog bite lawyer can assist you in recovering money for all of your medical expenses and more. In addition to standard hospital or doctor’s bills, you can get money for any prescription medications, required rehab or physical therapy, and any mental health services required. If the Cedar Hill dog that bit you also damaged your property–for instance, if you were bit and it also destroyed or damaged your mobile phone or tablet–a Cedar Hill, MO dog bite lawyer can get you money to repair that, as well as damages for the pain and suffering the ordeal of being bit by a dog put you through.

Studies have shown that the vast majority of dog bite lawsuits never go to trial. Insurance companies do not want to be exposed to having to potentially pay a substantial jury award, while plaintiffs like settlements as they avoid lengthy court cases and award them money in their bank account as soon as possible. Data from the Insurance Information Institute found that the average dog bite lawsuit settlement in Missouri is about $47,400, while in Illinois the average is a little higher at $48,100.



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

Attorney Amanda Hayden knows that getting bit by a dog is an experience no one should be subjected to. She takes time out 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 operate 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 Cedar Hill, MO, don’t delay: contact an compassionate dog bite lawyer. Call Amanda Hayden today at [clickable-number] or contact her online to set up a free, no-risk document review.

Dog Bite Lawyer

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