Dog Bite Lawyer Potosi, MO

Strong and Compassionate

Potosi, MO Dog Bite Lawyer

Dog Bite Lawyer in Potosi, MO. Dogs can be valued members of the family, close companions, and a friend even when times are tough and nobody else is there for you. However, sometimes man’s best friend is not exactly friendly, and the primal animal instincts of dogs can take over. If that ever happens to you or someone you know, a top Potosi, MO dog bite lawyer can be your best friend.

Attorney Amanda Hayden is a veteran Potosi, 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 empathy as well as vigor. If you have been recently bit by a dog in Potosi, MO, suffered 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 Do I Need To Do After I’ve Been Bit By A Dog?

If you have recently been bit by a dog in Potosi, MO, you’re most likely in a state of shock and uncertain about what to do next, just like any other accident. And as in any other accident, there’s a few steps you should immediately take after it has happened. Our Potosi, MO dog bite lawyer suggests you do the following if you’ve recently suffered a dog bite injury:

  • Take pictures. Get out your camera or phone and start snapping pictures 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 nearby, get pictures of them and their info too. Request that they provide info about the dog’s veterinarian, tag, and their personal homeowners’ or renter’s insurance. You should also take shots of the immediate area 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 local area will need to be contacted to begin their process after a dog has bit a human. In addition, you should talk to the Potosi police: not only should you ask for a report for your insurance records, but the police and other Potosi, 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 as soon as possible. Dog bites can easily result in infection, so quick treatment is critical.
  • Call your insurance company. Dog bites are usually 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.

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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 referred to as 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 sued for negligence.

However, in 2009 Missouri Revised Statute 237.036 became law, 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 responsible for the actions of their pets at all times. If a dog bites someone, without provocation, either 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 requires 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 extensive than Missouri’s dog bite statute as it also includes rules about what happens to dogs after they bite another human, a part of the law that in Missouri is reserved for local authorities. 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 mostly identical procedures they follow after a dog bites a human being. The sole difference is that Illinois’ dog bite procedures are part of the state Animal Control Act, while Missouri’s procedures are determined by each county or city. While this allows for some differences in other matters relating to dogs (for example, some localities in Missouri explicitly prohibit certain dog breeds like pit bulls), for the most part the protocol after a dog bite is identical.

Following the report of a dog bite, Potosi, MO animal control will impound the dog for ten days. The dog will be transported to a central location such as an animal shelter or a veterinarian’s office. They will then be observed for that time and checked for diseases, most notably rabies. Before they are permitted 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 regarded the dog to be safe, they can be released back into the care of their owner, but not before they pay for 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. Potosi, MO owners of dogs entered in these categories must keep them in secure pens or kennels, and when out in public they are required to keep them on a short leash and muzzled. If a dangerous or vicious dog bites another person once again, they are placed back under observation. However, this time owners must file an appeal and prove that they can maintain safe custody of their pet: if not, it will be euthanized.

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

Dog bite injuries can vary in their impact, but one thing is undoubtable: they are no joke. Dogs have strong jaws (research has found that on average, a dog’s bite exerts 320 psi of force, more than twice a human’s bite) and sharp teeth, both legacies of their predator forebearers. While, for instance, being bit by a shih tzu will not cause as many injuries as being bit by a rottweiler, the most common injuries our Potosi, 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 top Potosi, MO dog bite lawyer can help you recover funds for all of your medical bills and more. In addition to standard hospital or doctor’s bills, you can get money for any prescription drugs, needed rehab or physical therapy, and any mental health services you need. If the Potosi 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 Potosi, 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 put you through.

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



Contact A Potosi, 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 have to go through. She spends time to get acquainted with all her clients and make sure that they don’t have to go through the legal process alone. In addition, she brings a unique mix 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 financial award.

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

Dog Bite Lawyer