The Agency for Health Research and Quality (AHRQ) reports that dog bite injuries resulted in more than 316,000 visits to the emergency room in 2018. If you suffered injuries due to a dog bite, consider speaking with a Cicero dog bite lawyer to learn how you could fight to protect your rights. Call Pintas & Mullins Law Firm today at (800) 614-2067 to determine how you might be able to receive compensation for your injuries.
Dog Bite Laws in Illinois
510 ILCS 5, known as the Illinois Animal Control Act, establishes that dog owners maintain all legal liability and responsibility if their dog bites, attacks, or injures another person without provocation. Dog owners must do everything to prevent their pets from biting or hurting another person by maintaining control of a leash and removing their animal from any area that would increase the risk of their dog biting or harming another person.
Specifically, dog bite injuries fall under strict liability standards. This principle means that if a dog bites another person and injuries them, the dog owner cannot argue that they had no knowledge of the dog’s aggressive tendencies. 510 ILCS 5/16 allows victims to receive compensation for their injuries and losses if the following applies to their situation:
- The dog bit or attacked them.
- The person suffering from dog bite injuries was lawfully present when bit by the dog.
- The person suffering from dog bite injuries did not provoke the dog in any way before getting bitten.
Types of Injuries Suffered After a Dog Bite
Dog bites can cause severe injuries and harm to a victim. Some injuries that can result from a dog bite or attack include:
- Broken bones from getting knocked down in a dog attack
- Traumatic brain injury
- Dislocated arms and legs
- Puncture wounds
- Infections and diseases
- Nerve damage
- Cuts and bruises
- Internal organ damage
- Internal bleeding
As a result of dog bite injuries, many victims might need emergency room treatment in the immediate aftermath and an extended hospital stay for:
- Skin grafting
- Scar diminishment
- Reconstructive surgery
- Tissue expansion
The process to heal after a severe dog bite can take months or years, and in some cases, a victim may have permanent, lifelong medical challenges.
For a free legal consultation with a Dog Bites Lawyer serving Cicero, call (800) 794-0444
Steps to Take Following a Dog Bite
The following are some steps you could take if you have suffered dog bite injuries. If you have not done so, you should consider whether these steps can protect your health and preserve your legal rights:
- If you have not already done so, seek medical attention and evaluation as soon as possible.
- If you received medical attention, you should return to your medical provider if you develop any new symptoms or any of your existing symptoms worsen.
- Be sure to let the doctor or medical professional know that a dog bit you so the doctor can take precautions such as vaccinating against rabies and reporting any possible rabies case to the proper government agency.
- Take photographs of your injuries, including as they heal. These photos can show how slowly the healing process has taken.
- Save your clothing, if possible, from the day of the attack. If your case goes to trial, they can provide evidence for your personal injury case.
- Take time to visit with your employer if you remain unable to return to work and request a full detailed report of your lost wages, bonuses, potential promotions, employee benefits, pension contributions, future wages, and other lost compensation.
- Keep a daily diary of the activities you no longer can accomplish, such as walking up and down the stairs, running, or doing physical activity, as well as your pain levels and the medications you take.
Cicero Dog Bites Lawyer Near Me (800) 794-0444
Settlements vs. Lawsuits
In many dog bite cases, a victim will have the legal right to pursue compensation from the dog’s owner for the following damages:
- Medical bills
- Lost wages due to an inability to return to work
- Diminished earning capacity
- Psychological anguish
- Future expected medical expenses
- Pain and suffering
After filing their lawsuit, a victim will negotiate with either the dog owner, their insurance company, or their defense lawyer, depending on the facts and circumstances of the incident and where it took place. If a victim and the negligent party agree to many of the facts and circumstances surrounding the dog bite event, the negligent party might offer a fair and just settlement to the victim for their injuries and losses related to the dog bite.
However, in some cases, negotiations prove unsuccessful, and therefore, a victim must pursue justice by taking their case to trial. The amount of compensation a victim will have the legal right to receive will largely depend on the nature of the dog bite event and the extent of their injuries.
If you suffered any injuries or losses related to a dog bite, you might want to consider how a Cicero dog bite lawyer can help you determine the compensation you might have the legal right to receive. You can visit with the legal team at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm to explore how best to protect your legal rights.
Statute of Limitations
As you consider your options, keep in mind that the statute of limitations sets a deadline for when you can file your lawsuit. 735 ILCS 5/13-202 gives you two years from the date of the attack to pursue legal action. Some exceptions exist that pause the timer on the statute of limitations, so you might want to speak with a personal injury lawyer if you fear you might have missed your chance at seeking compensation for your losses.
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Consider a Cicero Dog Bite Lawyer
If you suffered injuries due to a dog bite in Cicero, you might have astronomical medical bills that will only grow as you need future medical treatment. You might have missed significant time at work, leading to lost wages, and your injuries might have reduced your future earning capacity.
You may have experienced excruciating pain and suffering from your injuries and emotional trauma that leaves you fearful of being around dogs. The attack might also have damaged some of your property, such as a cell phone or fitness tracker.
You can fight to recover compensation for any damages you incurred from the incident. You can visit with the legal team at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm today by calling (800) 614-2067 to learn how a Cicero dog bite lawyer can help you determine your next steps and answer your questions regarding your legal rights.