Charleston, IL Dog Bite Attorneys
Dog Owner Liability and Your Right to Compensation
Dog bites and attacks cause serious damage, both physical and psychological. It may seem difficult or impossible to fully heal after such an attack, but obtaining a fair settlement or award to cover medical bills and other losses can go a long way toward helping a victim begin to move on with their life.
The lawyers at The Tapella & Eberspacher Law Firm are committed to ensuring that dog bite victims receive compensation for the full measure of the injury they have suffered. We represent clients from throughout Coles County and St. Louis, MO in personal injury and wrongful death actions related to dog bites and animal attacks of any kind.
To find out how our dog bite attorneys can help you, call (217) 394-5885. Your confidential consultation will be provided completely free of charge.
Illinois Dog Bite Laws
Many states are governed by the “one-bite rule,” which mandates that dog owners can only be held accountable for a dog bite if they either knew or should have reasonably known that their dog presented a danger to others. As of 2020, Illinois is not a one-bite rule state; rather, the state holds animal owners to a strict liability standard. This means that a victim of an unprovoked dog attack does not need to prove that the owner negligently controlled the dog nor that the dog had ever attacked anyone before.
To win a dog bite claim, you will need to prove all of the following conditions:
- The dog either attempted to attack or did attack you;
- You had a legal right to be in the place in which the incident occurred (i.e. you were not trespassing); and
- You did not provoke the dog in any way.
It should be noted that the person in charge of the dog at the time of the attack will be the one whom the law will deem accountable. Therefore, if a dog walker was in charge of the dog at the time, the lawsuit would be brought against them, not the dog owner. The dog walker would then be legally responsible for paying all your damages if your claim is won.
Legal Compensation for Dog Bite Victims in Coles County
Should your dog bite claim be brought to a favorable resolution, your compensation may include not only damages related to the injury of the bite itself, but those suffered while trying to flee or otherwise avoid the attacking dog, such as injuries caused by tripping or falling.
Damages paid to dog bite victims often cover:
- Expenses for past and future medical care;
- Reconstructive surgery;
- Rehabilitative expenses;
- Lost wages;
- Future loss of earnings;
- Emotional distress; and
- Pain and suffering.
In many cases, these damages may be covered under the homeowner’s insurance policy of the animal owner. At The Tapella & Eberspacher Law Firm, we consider every possible source of compensation to maximize each client’s recovery.
What Happens to the Dog if I Sue?
While dogs are often regarded as man’s best friend and can be quite friendly, cute, and kind, some dogs have dangerous behavioral issues and cause real harm to unsuspecting people. Thus, the state takes these animals seriously.
After a claim, the court will issue an order to impound the dog, and the dog may be euthanized. The dog owner may appeal in a circuit court, but nothing is guaranteed. Even if they do recover the dog, they might have to pay animal control for caring for their dog.
Our Lawyers Have the Experience You Need
Our Charleston dog bite attorneys at The Tapella & Eberspacher Law Firm have substantial experience handling canine and other animal attack cases. We apply our knowledge and experience to pursue the maximum amount of compensation available to our clients under Illinois law.
If someone in your family has suffered an injury or you believe you may have a wrongful death claim after a dog attack, The Tapella & Eberspacher Law Firm is here to help. We handle cases throughout Coles County and offer free consultations. If we take on your case, there are no attorney fees unless you receive compensation.