Dogs are cherished and considered as part of the family in over 90 million homes in America. Unfortunately, according to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), 4.5 million people are bitten by a dog annually in the United States. Dog bites could have disastrous effects for all those involved, including serious injury, property damage, and costly medical bills.
If a domesticated animal bit you or a loved one, you may be in need of an experienced Calumet City dog bite lawyer. A dedicated personal injury attorney could help you pursue compensation from the animal’s owner and seek justice for your injuries and damages.
Dog bites can be life-altering for those who are attacked, and people bitten by a dog may experience scars that could last the rest of their life. In addition to the external damage, individuals who have been bitten may need to receive treatment for diseases and bacteria such as:
Fortunately, injured individuals may be able to recover compensation for the damages and injuries they have sustained due to an animal bite. This could include compensation for the costs of medication, treatment and medical care, lost wages and income.
Plaintiffs in dog bite cases may also be eligible to recover compensation for non-monetary damages such as pain and suffering, mental anguish, loss of enjoyment of life, and more. A resourceful attorney could speak to medical professionals to determine the type of damages a bite victim may be eligible to recover and calculate appropriate compensation for their injuries.
Dogs must be kept on a leash if they leave the owner’s property. A dog is free to run around within the confines of the property, but if it leaves the boundaries then it must be on a leash. Any owner with a dog that is outside of the property and not on a leash is subject to a fine or ticket. There are some places where dogs can run free without a leash – such as a designated dog park – but it is important to check the regulation for each location. When in doubt, a person should make sure their dog is leashed. If a bite does occur, the fact that the dog is leashed does not immunize the owner from liability. However, having control over the animal makes it less likely that it will attack someone, which is why all owners should follow this rule.
According to 510 Illinois Compiled Statutes 5/6, the owner of an animal is liable for any injuries another individual sustains because of that animal’s actions. Under this statute, if a dog attacks without provocation and the victim was conducting themselves peacefully and in a lawful manner, the dog owner could be held liable for the attack.
Illinois uses a “strict liability” doctrine with regards to dog bites, meaning that the owner is liable for any injuries the dog causes regardless of their knowledge of their pet’s aggressiveness. Given this, the dog owner cannot argue that they were unaware that their dog might attack someone.
Illinois provides a two-year statute of limitations for any personal injury claim, according to 735 ILCS 5/13-202. Injured individuals are required to file their claim within two years or settle out of court in order to seek compensation. Because of this deadline, it is usually essential to reach out to an experienced Calumet City dog bite lawyer promptly to ensure that all claims and documentation are filed within the state’s statute of limitations.
If you were bitten by a dog, there may be legal options for recovery available to you. A Calumet City dog bite lawyer could help determine liability for the attack and help guide you through the process of filing a personal injury claim.
You could deserve compensation for the injuries you have sustained from an animal bite. Call today to schedule a consultation and find out what may be possible in your case.