Dog Bite Lawyer Rock Hill, MO

Strong and Compassionate

Rock Hill, MO Dog Bite Lawyer

Dog Bite Lawyer in Rock Hill, MO. Dogs can be treasured members of the family, near and dear companions, and a friend even when times are rough and nobody else is there for you. However, every so often man’s best friend is not so friendly, and the natural animal instincts of dogs can take over. If that ever happens to you or someone you know, a top Rock Hill, MO dog bite lawyer can be your best friend.

Attorney Amanda Hayden is an experienced Rock 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 empathy as well as strength. If you have been recently bit by a dog in Rock Hill, 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 Rock Hill, MO, you’re most likely in a state of trauma and uncertain about what to do next, just like any other accident. And as in any other accident, there’s several steps you should immediately take after your accident has happened. Our Rock Hill, MO dog bite lawyer encourages you to do the following if you’ve recently had a dog bite injury:

  • Take photos. Get out your camera or phone and start taking pictures of everything around you. If you can, take photos of the dog that bit you: even if they are running away from you and you can thus only get blurry 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 too. Ask them to provide info about the dog’s veterinarian, tag, and their personal homeowners’ or renter’s insurance. You should also take pictures of the immediate area like street signs, cars parked nearby, and house numbers–animal control needs to tell 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 tasks after a dog has bit a human. In addition, you should call the Rock Hill police: not only should you ask for a report for your insurance records, but the police and other Rock Hill, MO authorities also keep records of 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 as soon as possible. Dog bites can easily lead to infection, so rapid 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 considered “personal property”. Call them as soon as you can to file a claim so they can benefit 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 used the same legal principle regarding 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 never previously bitten another human being–thus giving 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 changed how Missouri law 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 warning, either on public property or private property they are lawfully standing, 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, 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 sections about what happens to dogs after they bite another human, a part of the law that in Missouri is delegated to local governments. Most notably, it does outline 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 the same procedures they follow after a dog bites a human being. The sole 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 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.

After the report of a dog bite, Rock Hill, MO animal control will impound the dog for ten days. The dog will be transported to a central facility such as an animal shelter or a veterinarian’s office. They will then be observed for that time and inspected for diseases, 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 animal is spayed or neutered. If authorities have deemed the dog to be safe, they can be sent 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.

After 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. Rock Hill, 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: otherwise, it will be put to sleep.

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

Dog bite injuries can vary in their severity, but one thing is undoubtable: they are no laughing matter. 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 legacies of their predator forebearers. While, for instance, being bit by a chihuahua will not cause as many injuries as being bit by a Doberman Pinscher, the most common injuries our Rock 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 Rock Hill, MO dog bite lawyer can help you recover funds for all of your medical costs and more. In addition to standard hospital or doctor’s charges, you can get money for any prescription medications, needed rehab or physical therapy, and any psychological counseling required. If the Rock Hill 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 Rock Hill, MO dog bite lawyer can get you money to replace that, as well as damages for the pain and suffering the process of being bit by a dog caused you.

Studies have shown that the overwhelming majority of dog bite lawsuits never go in front of a jury. Insurance providers do not want to chance 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 revealed that the median dog bite lawsuit settlement in Missouri is about $47,400, while in Illinois the average is slightly higher at $48,100.



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

Lawyer Amanda Hayden knows that being bit by a dog is an experience no one should be subjected to. She spends time to get to know all her clients and ensure 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 Rock 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-obligation case evaluation.

Dog Bite Lawyer

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