Dog Bite Lawyer Lebanon, IL
Strong and Compassionate
Lebanon, IL Dog Bite Lawyer
Dog Bite Lawyer in Lebanon, IL. Dogs can be treasured 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 very friendly, and the natural animal instincts of dogs can take over. If that ever happens to you or someone you know, a highly-rated Lebanon, IL dog bite lawyer can be your best friend.
Attorney Amanda Hayden is an experienced Lebanon, IL personal injury lawyer who puts her clients first in all that she does. She has a long record of representing her dog bite clients with empathy as well as vigor. If you have been recently bit by a dog in Lebanon, IL, 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 Lebanon, IL, you’re most likely in a state of trauma 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 the incident has happened. Our Lebanon, IL dog bite lawyer encourages you to do the following if you’ve recently suffered a dog bite injury:
- Take photos. Get out your camera or phone and start getting shots of everything around you. If you can, take pictures 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 also there, get pictures of them and their info as well. Ask them to give you 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 work after a dog has bit a human. In addition, you should chat with the Lebanon police: not only should you obtain a report for your insurance records, but the police and other Lebanon, IL authorities also keep info on dogs who have bit other people before. If they find that you are not the first person that dog has bit, their owner may be facing criminal charges.
- Get medical help. No matter 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 result in infection, so speedy treatment is important.
- Call your insurance company. Dog bites are often covered as part of a homeowners’ or renter’s insurance policy, as they are viewed as “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 obtain, if possible, the dog owner’s insurance information.
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 under 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 before bitten another human being–thus granting Missouri dog owners a free bite before they could be taken to court 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 a free pass for 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 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 standing, their owner can be sued for any and all damages. On top of that, Missouri law mandates 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 extensive than Missouri’s dog bite statute as it also includes guidelines 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 mention 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 widely identical procedures they follow after a dog bites a human being. The only difference is that Illinois’ dog bite mandates are part of the state Animal Control Act, while Missouri’s policies are set by each county or city. While this allows for some differences in other matters relating to dogs (for example, some localities in Missouri specifically prohibit certain dog breeds like pit bulls), for the most part the protocol following a dog bite is identical.
Following the report of a dog bite, Lebanon, IL animal control will take the dog into custody for ten days. The dog will be taken to a central facility such as an animal shelter or a veterinarian’s office. They will then be watched for that time and checked for diseases, 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 dog is spayed or neutered. If animal control has viewed the dog to be safe, they can be sent 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 entered into a statewide database of “dangerous” (in Missouri) or “vicious” (in Illinois) dogs. Lebanon, IL owners of dogs listed 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 someone once 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 put to sleep.
How Much Can I Get For My Lebanon, IL Dog Bite Lawsuit?
Dog bite injuries can vary in their impact, but one thing is undoubtable: they are no joke. Dogs have strong jaws (a study 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 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 Lebanon, IL dog bite lawyer sees include:
- Surface-level cuts and bruises
- Lacerations and puncture wounds
- Infections from canine saliva
- Broken or cracked bones
- Avulsion injuries (when skin or body parts are torn off)
- Nerve damage
- Emotional trauma
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
A skilled Lebanon, IL dog bite lawyer can help you recover money for all of your medical bills and more. In addition to standard hospital or doctor’s charges, you can get money for any prescription medications, required rehab or physical therapy, and any mental health services you need. If the Lebanon dog that bit you also damaged your property–for instance, if you were bit and the force of his bite tore an expensive article of clothing–a Lebanon, IL 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 overwhelming majority of dog bite lawsuits never see a courtroom. Insurance firms do not want to be exposed to having to potentially pay a large jury award, while plaintiffs like settlements as they avoid long court cases and put money in their pockets 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 marginally higher at $48,100.
Contact A Lebanon, IL Dog Bite Lawyer Who Fights For Her Clients
Lawyer Amanda Hayden knows that getting bit by a dog is an experience no one should have to go through. She takes the time to get to know all her clients and reassure them 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 do business 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 Lebanon, IL, don’t delay: contact an experienced dog bite lawyer. Call Amanda Hayden today at [clickable-number] or contact her online to set up a free, no-obligation document review.