Present in over 63 million households across the United States, dogs account for the most popular pet in the country. They often make loyal companions, but even the friendliest dogs can bite, sometimes causing serious or fatal injuries. The Insurance Information Institute (III) reports that, of the approximately 4.5 million dog bites that occur each year, most affect children under the age of 10. In 2019 alone, insurance companies paid victims a total of nearly $800 million in dog bite claims.
In 2019, dog bite claims increased from the previous year, totaling over 17,800 nationwide. Illinois came in fifth place with the most dog bite claims with a total of 854, and insurance companies paid victims over $41 million in compensation. If you, your child, or another loved one suffered a serious or fatal injury as the result of an attack, a Bartlett dog bite lawyer can help you pursue financial awards. Call Pintas & Mullins Law Firm today at (800) 794-0444 to discuss your case with a member of our legal team.
Dog Bites Can Have Dangerous Complications
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), nearly 1 in 5 people who suffer dog bites require medical attention. In some cases, even bites that appear minor may later develop infection, which victims must treat as soon as possible to prevent its spread and potential complications, which may include:
- Prolonged healing time
- Increased pain and discomfort
- An infection of the dermal or subcutaneous skin layers (cellulitis)
- Infection of the blood that can have fatal effects (septicemia)
The risk of certain bacterial and viral infections, such as tetanus and rabies, increases if the dog or victim has not received vaccinations.
Injuries and Fatalities From Dog Bites
Some bites, especially those from large dogs, can cause serious physical damage to the victim. Broken bones commonly occur in the legs, feet, arms, and hands, and deep bites can destroy muscles and nerves. In severe instances, fatal injuries may occur.
Increased Risk for Young Children
Children have an increased risk of dog bites when compared to adults. A study noted by the National Institutes of Health found that of the 537 children who presented to a hospital with dog bite injuries from 2003 to 2008, the majority of affected children were under the age of 5. Young children often suffer more severe injuries, particularly in the head and neck.
State and Local Ordinances Require Responsible Ownership
While no federal regulations legislate dog bite injuries, local and state governments often develop their own requirements for reporting and management of animal attacks. The Village of Bartlett does not have an ordinance pertaining to dog bites, but it does impose a limit of three dogs on each household and requires that the owner vaccinate and register each one annually.
The Illinois Animal Control Act outlines the processes for overseeing dog bites. If a dog bites without provocation even once, its owner holds full liability for any injuries that occur as a result. Additionally, the owner must submit their animal for observation and pay for rabies inoculation and microchipping before regaining custody. Illinois deems any dog that bites three or more times a “vicious” animal and does not allow the owner to keep the dog unless they take several precautions to prevent the dog from having contact with other people.
Ensuring that you follow the proper legal steps can present a challenge, but a Bartlett dog bite lawyer can help. Contact Pintas & Mullins Law Firm today for a free case evaluation.
For a free legal consultation with a Dog Bite Lawyer serving Bartlett, call (800) 794-0444
You May Qualify for Financial Awards
If you or a loved one suffered serious or fatal injuries as the result of a dog bite in Bartlett, an attorney can manage your case on your behalf. If the owner of the dog has homeowner’s insurance, their policy may include coverage to provide you with compensation. Otherwise, you may pursue a case against the owner to recover damages.
Types of financial awards you may receive depend on the details of your case and the extent of your losses, but they may include payment for:
- Emergency medical care, physical therapy, rehabilitation, and other healthcare expenses related to your injury
- Lost wages if you cannot work as a result of your injury
- Loss of future income if your injury left you with a disability that prevents you from working or if you lost a loved one who provided for you and your family
- Pain and suffering, such as mental anguish or permanent disfigurement
- Loss of consortium if your spouse suffered fatal injuries as a result of the bite
- Funeral and burial expenses
Bartlett Dog Bite Lawyer Near Me (800) 794-0444
You Have a Limited Amount of Time to File Your Claim
Every state has its own statute of limitations regarding dog bite cases, which fall under a type of personal injury called premises liability. Premises liability cases require a property owner whose property caused injury or allowed an injury to occur to a victim as a result of negligence to provide compensation for the injury.
In Illinois, victims have up to two years from the date of the dog bite to file their claim. In instances in which the dog bite led to fatal injuries, the victim’s family has up to two years from the date of the incident or one year after the date of passing. Regardless of the circumstances, lawyers typically advise victims and their families to file their claims as soon as possible to ensure that the process takes place within the statute of limitations.
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In addition to the serious physical injury dog bites can cause, they can also contribute to mental, emotional, and financial struggles that have long-term effects on victims and their families. Dog owners have a responsibility to keep those around them safe. If a dog attacked you unprovoked, you can hold the owner accountable for their failure to prevent harm.
Navigating the legal system may feel challenging, but with the help of a Bartlett dog bite lawyer, you do not have to manage your case on your own. At Pintas & Mullins Law Firm, we work on a contingency fee basis, which means you do not owe us any fees unless we achieve compensation on your behalf. If you or a loved one suffered serious or fatal injuries caused by a dog bite, call us today at (800) 794-0444 for a free case evaluation.