Those who are injured in a dog attack often experience physical and psychological trauma that can leave a long lasting impact. The Chicago dog bite attorneys of Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers represent the needs and interests of adults and children who are attacked by aggressive animals that were not properly trained or controlled by their owners. Illinois law allows a person injured by a dog owned by another to recover financial compensation for the physical and emotional damage caused by an attacking animal.
If you or your child was injured by a dog in Chicago, we invite you to complete our on-line case intake form for a free review of your situation. A Chicago dog bite lawyer will personally review your case and advise you of your legal options to recover financial compensation for you pain, disfigurement and medical expenses. While our office is headquartered in Chicago, we serve people injured in dog bite attack cases across the entire State of Illinois.
It is easy to look at injuries in one dimension, but the effects of a dog bite are not solely physical. Victims may require plastic surgery to address unsightly scars and may suffer emotional trauma due to their appearance or fear of animals due to an association with the attack. When evaluating your case, our Chicago dog bite lawyers will look at the following factors when determining how to recover maximum compensation from the responsible dog owner. For a full discussion on Illinois dog bite verdicts and settlements, view our section here.
Below are some factors that need to be considered when evaluating dog bite cases from a settlement perspective.
- The extent of the physical injury and cost of medical treatment. Some dog bites can require extensive medical procedures to repair damage to muscle tissue and nerves or to cover up the appearance of scars that alter the victim’s physical appearance. Bites may also become infected and require emergency treatment to address the infection.
- The extent of the emotional and psychological trauma. Some victims experience flashbacks of a brutal attack any time they approach another animal. It can impact their ability to socialize with dog owners and make it difficult to maintain friendships and relationships with people who have pets.
- The social impact of the injuries. It is difficult for children and adolescents to develop friendships and make needed social connections when they are ridiculed over their appearance. Dog bites can leave noticeable scars and make it difficult for children to lead a normal and healthy life without undergoing extensive plastic surgery.
While provocation may be claimed as a defense in dog attack cases, Illinois law firmly places responsibility on dog owners when their canine injures a person due to a bite or attack (non-bite injuries) pursuant to the Illinois Animal Control Act (510 ILCS 5/1). It is the responsibility of owners to take reasonable measures to control the actions and temperament of their animals, however. Following are the fair expectations placed on all dog owners.
- To keep dogs contained when on their premises or on a leash when in public.
- To properly train their dogs and reinforce a peaceful temperament. Many of the owners of vicious dogs actually promote their aggressive behavior and think that it makes a statement to have an attack dog. When the dog gets loose and mauls another human being, the appeal is quickly lost.
- To supervise their animal when it interacts with strangers. When children approach a dog and ask to interact with it, it is the duty of the dog owner to make sure that the dog remains peaceful and docile. Before the child interacts with it, the owner should establish boundaries early on that will prevent provocation of the animal.
- Animals shall be leashed or fenced in on the property in order to avoid crossing the property line (7-12-030)
- The executive director has the authority to investigate dog bites and determine if a dog is 'dangerous'. If deemed to be a vicious animal, the director may have the dog euthanized.
- When the executive director deems a dog to be dangerous, a fine may be imposed between $500 and $1,000 and obedience training may be ordered.
- Dog owners must notify the director within 24-hours of a bite attack on a person
- All dogs over four months must be licensed and vaccinated
Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers believes that the actions of dogs are reflections of the time and care that their owners invest in their development. When a dog attacks someone, it is an indication that the owner has not handled that animal and should be held responsible for its actions. If you have been injured in a Chicago dog attack, contact us to learn more about how we can help you recover the compensation you need to cover the cost of your medical treatment and ongoing care.
Our Commitment to Helping You Recover the Maximum Compensation Possible for Your Illinois Dog Bite Case
Many people assume that there is little that they can do following a dog bite attack in terms of pursuing the owner of the animal for damages related to their injuries. Our law firm is committed to protecting your rights and taking the steps necessary to hold the owner of the animal responsible for the attack. From the time our office is retained in a dog bite case, we get to work to secure the following materials to help ensure the value of your case is maximized via settlement or trial:
- Medical records and bills
- Dog registration materials
- Veterinary records
- Professional photographs of bite wounds and scarring
- Reports from experts such as animal behaviorists or plastic surgeons who can help explain the cause of the attack and extent of the injuries
- Correspondence with the dog owner's homeowners insurance carrier
Our Chicago dog bite attorneys are specialists in Illinois dog injury law and have pledged only to collect a fee after successfully securing compensation on your behalf. We will arrange a consultation to review your legal options free of charge and if we cannot assist you in your financial recovery, you’ll owe us nothing.
Chicago, IL Dog Bite Resources: