Dog Bite
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Illinois Dog Bite Attorneys Help Victims Obtain Financial Compensation

Dog bites can cause serious injuries that are often life-changing. Many victims suffer long term, and even permanent physical and emotional damages that significantly impact their day-to-day lives, sometimes resulting in ongoing medical treatment and/or the inability to work. Sadly, some animal attacks even result in death.

If you have been injured by a dog attack that is the result of a pet owner’s negligence, you may be entitled to monetary compensation for past and future medical treatment, scarring and disfigurement, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more. Our personal injury lawyers can help you obtain financial compensation to cover the costs involved with your injuries so you can concentrate on the important things in life- like recovery.

Dog Bite Injuries Plague the United States

Serious dog attacks are not uncommon in the U.S. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), nearly five million people are bitten, scratched or mauled by dogs every year. About 50% of injured victims are children. Approximately 885,000 people suffer dog bite injuries so severe that they require medical treatment, and almost 400,000 victims are treated in emergency rooms. On average, 27,000 people annually undergo reconstructive surgery as a result of their injuries. Each year, about 16 victims lose their lives. Those who are at the highest risk for suffering a dog attack include children between the ages of 5 and 9, the elderly, and mail carriers.

While some dog bites result in small punctures, bruises and scratches that only need minor first-aid treatment or no aftercare at all, many others cause significant injuries that result in long-term damage. According to the CDC, victims most commonly suffer injuries to the arms, hands, legs, feet, head or neck. Common dog bite injuries sustained include:

  • Cuts, scratches, tears and bruises
  • Puncture wounds
  • Dislocations and fractures
  • Head injuries
  • Amputations

Take Action After a Dog Bite or Attack

By law, dog owners and other parties in Illinois can be held liable when dogs attack. Under the Illinois Animal Control Act, owners and keepers are legally responsible for injuries sustained due to a dog attack when neglect can be shown as the cause and:

  • the dog was not intentionally or unintentionally provoked,
  • the victim was not trespassing, and
  • the victim was acting in a peaceful manner.

If you’ve been attacked by a dog, there are a number of things you can do to improve your chances for a successful personal injury claim. When possible, and without putting yourself at risk for additional injuries:

  • Seek medical attention as soon as possible. A doctor should provide a thorough evaluation of the damages you’ve sustained and treat them accordingly. By obtaining immediate medical care you will have documentation to prove the extent of your injuries in court, if need be.
  • Report the attack to police right away. A copy of the police report can serve as valuable evidence in your case.
  • Get contact information. If possible, obtain contact information for any witnesses who might have seen the dog attack as well as for the dog’s owner or keeper.
  • Take Pictures. Provide photographs of the injuries you sustained as a result of the encounter.
  • Keep track of evidence: Save any clothing or personal items/ property that was damaged during the attack.
  • Avoid Communication with the owner and the insurance company. Chances are that dog owners and insurance companies will try to settle your personal injury claim out of court and probably for much less than you are entitled to receive. By accepting any type of compensation for your injuries or agreeing to an insurance settlement, you could unintentionally waive your right to sue for additional damages.

If you are the victim of a dog bite, contact a personal injury attorney at Herbert Law Firm right away at 312-655-7660 for a free consultation and discuss your legal options.

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