Dog Bite Injury

According to a study from the Center for Disease Control (CDC), approximately 4.7 million dog bites occur in the United States each year, and 800,000 of those bites result in medical care.

The U.S. population is approximately 325.7 million people as of 2017. That means a dog bites 1 out of every 69 people.

Dog bites (and other dog-related injuries) accounted for more than one-third of all homeowners' insurance liability claim dollars paid in 2014, costing in excess of $530 million, according to the Insurance Information Institute and State Farm Insurance Company.

If you are a victim of an animal attack, including a dog bite, you are afforded protection under the Illinois Animal Control Act, 510 ILCS 5/1 et seq. The relevant section of the Act is Section 16, "Animal attacks or injuries," which provides:

"If a dog or other animal, without provocation, attacks, attempts to attack, or injures any person who is peaceably conducting himself or herself in any place where he or she may lawfully be, the owner of such dog or other animal is liable in civil damages to such person for the full amount of the injury proximately caused thereby."

To successfully prosecute an animal attack case, the following four elements must be proved before you can collect any damages:

  1. an injury caused by an animal owned or harbored by the defendant;
  2. a lack of provocation of the animal;
  3. peaceable conduct of the person injured; and
  4. the presence of the person injured in a place where he or she has a legal right to be. The statute itself, as well as attending case law, requires neither an attack nor even an attempted attack, but simply an injury caused by an animal.

If you can prove all four of the required elements, you are entitled to recover damages for past and future medical expenses, lost time from work, pain and suffering, disability and disfigurement or loss of normal life.

The lawyers at Holman & Stefanowicz, LLC have prosecuted animal attack cases and are here to help victims of dog bite and other animal attacks, please contact us at 312-258-9700 to discuss your potential claim.

 

Important Client Tip:

As the old saying goes, "a picture is worth a thousand words." Document your injuries, recovery and scarring with photographs taken immediately after the attack and throughout the course of your recovery!

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