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Can I Sue Someone if Their Dog Attacked Me or My Child?

Posted on in Personal Injury

McHenry County Personal Injury AttorneyDogs are thought of as man’s best friend. Unfortunately, not all dogs live up to this adage. Dog bites can lead to severe and lasting injuries. Broken bones, nerve damage, and deep lacerations that can lead to infection, and permanent scarring and are just some of the serious injuries that may result from a dog bite. Dog attacks can also take a significant psychological toll on the victims. Some dog bite victims suffer from debilitating anxiety or post-traumatic stress for months or years. If a dog bit you or a loved one, you may be interested in holding the dog’s owner accountable through a dog bite lawsuit.

Illinois Law on Dog Attacks

Unlike some other states, Illinois is not a “one free bite” state when it comes to liability for dog-related injuries. If a dog bites a person while he or she is on public property or lawfully on private property, that person typically has the right to sue. The only exception to this is if it can be proven that the bite victim intentionally provoked the animal. The injured person may be entitled to financial compensation for his or her damages. The injured person may be entitled to compensation for:

  • Medical bills including ambulance, hospital, and emergency room bills, expenses related to x-rays and other medical tests, medication, surgery, and more

  • Ongoing medical needs caused by the dog bite injuries, including physical therapy or counseling

  • Lost income from the time the injured person had to take off of work

  • Lost earning capacity caused by a disabling injury

Compensation may also be available for non-financial damages, including the victim’s physical pain, emotional and mental suffering, and disfigurement.

Who Pays for Damages in a Dog Attack Case?

In many dog attack cases, the dog owner’s homeowners’ insurance or renter’s insurance is ultimately responsible for compensating the victim. A dog bite injury lawyer can help you file a claim with the insurance company and negotiate a settlement that adequately covers your expenses. If the insurance company offers an unreasonably low payout or tries to deny compensation entirely, your next step may be to file a lawsuit. There is a two-year statute of limitations for personal injury lawsuits in Illinois so, if you are interested in taking legal action after a dog attack, it is important to get started on your case right away.

Contact a Crystal Lake Dog Attack Lawyer

If you or a loved one were injured in a dog attack, contact the skilled McHenry County personal injury lawyers at Botto Gilbert Lancaster, PC, for help. Call 815-338-3838 to schedule a free, no-obligation initial consultation.



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