St. Louis Dog Bite Lawyer
Dog Bite Lawyers in St. Louis fight for the rights of dog bite victims in Missouri and Illinois
Dog Bite Lawyer in St. Louis. Although dogs are known as man’s best friend, they are also capable of seriously injuring and killing children and adults. If you or a loved one has been bitten by a dog, or a family member has died in a serious dog attack, our St. Louis dog bite lawyers can help.
Our lawyers can assess your case, determine liability in the accident, and develop a personalized plan to recover damages for your harm and losses. Christopher Dixon and the St. Louis dog bite lawyers at the Dixon Injury Firm aren’t afraid to fight the dog owner’s insurance company and demand the compensation that you deserve for your dog bite injuries.
Priding themselves on compassionate and aggressive legal representation, they are also ready to offer support during this challenging time.
To discuss your right to reimbursement for your dog bite injuries, call 314-409-7060, 855-402-7274 (toll-free), or contact the Dixon Injury Firm today to schedule a free consultation with our dog bite lawyers in St. Louis, MO.
Founder and Managing Attorney
I pride myself on tirelessly fighting for the injury victims who continuously trust me with their cases. It is an honor to serve and a passion which drives my existence.
St. Louis Dog Bite Injury Lawyers
If you suffered a dog bite, and need help with your case, Christopher Dixon and the team of St. Louis dog bite lawyers at the Dixon Injury Firm are passionate about fighting for the rights of dog bite victims and will do everything they can to recover full compensation for your case. Chris Dixon’s efforts have been recognized by the National Trial Lawyers Association with the status of “Top 100 Trial Lawyer,” and earned him a Lifetime Membership in the Million Dollar Advocates Forum.
When you choose Chris Dixon and his team of St. Louis dog bite lawyers to represent your dog bite case, you can be confident that your best interests are protected, and that our lawyers won’t give up until they obtain full compensation from the other party’s insurance company.
If you are interested in more information on how our dog bite lawyers in St. Louis can recover a high settlement for your dog bite injuries and losses, feel free to contact the Dixon Injury Firm today.
Missouri Dog Bite Statute
Missouri uses “strict liability” to determine who is liable for a victim’s damages in dog bite attacks. Strict liability means that a dog’s owner is liable for the animal’s actions if it bites or injures a person without provocation or trespassing on private property.
Missouri’s Dog Bite Statute states:
“The owner or possessor of any dog that bites, without provocation, any person while such person is on public property, or lawfully on private property, including the property of the owner or possessor of the dog, is strictly liable for damages suffered by persons bitten, regardless of the former viciousness of the dog or the owner’s or possessor’s knowledge of such viciousness. Owners and possessors of the dogs shall also be strictly liable for any damage to property or livestock proximately caused by their dogs. If it is determined that the party had fault in the incident, any damages owed by the owner or possessor of the biting dog shall be reduced by the same percentage that the damaged party’s fault contributed to the incident. The provisions of this section shall not apply to dogs killing or maiming sheep or other domestic animals under section 273.020.”
According to Missouri law, the statute of limitations on filing a Missouri dog bite lawsuit is five years, starting from the date the dog bit the person. However, waiting to begin the claim process can result in lost evidence and a harder fright from the insurance company. It is important to start the recovery process as soon as possible following a dog bite injury.
Who Is Liable After a Dog Attack in Missouri?
A dog owner’s responsibility for a bite depends on several legal conditions. The dog owner, for instance, is liable if their dog bites someone under the following circumstances:
First, the victim’s injury directly resulted from the dog’s bite. The injury was not a result of some other incident, such as the victim falling and getting hurt after the dog growled and threatened to attack. However, in these two later situations, the dog owner may face liability under different legal theories depending on the facts.
Second, the injury caused by the dog bite happened on public property; or
Third, the injury caused by the dog bite happened on the dog owner’s private property, but the injured person was there lawfully. For instance, the dog owner had invited the injured person to the property or the injured person was delivering a service; for instance, delivering mail, gardening, or doing repair work.
Fourth, the injured person did not say or do anything to provoke the dog to attack and bite.
Dog Bite Injuries and Scarring | Dog Bite Attorney in St. Louis
Dog bite injuries are often severe and tend to occur in vulnerable areas such as a person’s eyes, lips, cheeks, head, and neck, especially in children under the age of 9, who are the most common victims of dog bites. This is a serious concern because no matter what type of dog bite injury an adult or child suffers, the victim will likely be left with permanent scarring.
Facial scarring can cause victims to struggle with needless embarrassment and emotional distress from the accident; according to a study published by the U.S. National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health, scarring is often the precursor to physiological injury and adolescent ridicule.
If you suffer severe face, head, or body damage in a dog bite attack, it’s crucial to visit a plastic surgeon and discuss the possibility of scar revision surgery, or having the surgeon write a scar revision report. A scar revision report details available treatment to reduce the appearance of marks left behind from the accident and can limit the cost of surgery.
If a child is injured in a dog bite attack, it’s essential to keep in mind that plastic surgeons typically wait until a child turns 18 before performing a scar revision surgery.
For that reason, it’s crucial to avoid settling a child’s dog bite case until you have a scar revision report. Obtaining a scar revision report ensures that the victim has the funds necessary to undergo scar revision surgery once they turn 18. In addition to compensation for medical expenses, dog bite victims can recover reimbursement for lost wages and property damage caused in the accident, and receive compensation for any present or future emotional, mental, or physical distress caused by the dog bite attack.
What to Do After a Dog Bite in Missouri
The personal injury attorneys at the Dixon Law Firm will be able to provide legal advice on what to do after a dog bite.
However, before you consult with us, there are four things you must do:
- Seek immediate medical attention, as a failure to get medical treatment quickly could cause serious infections or scarring.
- Notify the proper authorities, such as a police office or animal control official.
- Take pictures of your injuries before stitches and bandages cover up the evidence.
- If approached by the dog owner’s insurance company representative, do not provide a recorded statement or sign insurance forms or medical authorization forms.
By taking care of these four urgent issues, you will strengthen your case rather than weaken it. Regardless of where you are in the dog bite process, it is always a good idea to consult with an attorney to discuss the best way forward with your injury case.
Should I Get a Lawyer for a Dog Bite?
If you’ve suffered an injury after an animal attack, specifically an attack by someone’s dog, then you need legal representation.
Dog bite laws are complex. There are many factors to consider. For instance, does the case fall under the dog bites child law? What if a service dog bit someone at a grocery store? Who is liable if a service dog bites someone? Only an experienced dog bite attorney can competently answer these questions.
Contact the Dixon Injury Firm if a dog has bitten you. It doesn’t matter if you think the dog bite was a minor one. What might appear to be minor could be a serious injury. A soft tissue injury after a dog bite could be an abrasion, a laceration, or a torn ligament. Without proper medical treatment, the wound could get considerably worse.
A pet owner is responsible for the behavior of their animals and if you don’t report it to the authorities and talk to a lawyer, the dog might bite other people, causing even more unnecessary harm. So, don’t ignore a dog bite because you are a forgiving person. You deserve monetary compensation for your injury.
What’s more, a minor incident could cause infections or scarring. A Dixon personal injury lawyer will represent your case in court so you won’t have to pay for your medical expenses out of your own pocket.
Understanding Your Legal Options
Although millions of people get bitten by dogs every year in the United States, it is still not public knowledge that dog bite victims have a legal right of recourse against careless dog owners—for instance, a dog owner who either did not leash their dog in a public place or took the dog for a walk without a leash.
You might even have suffered a dog bite by a rabid dog whose owner had not bothered with inoculations. You will need someone familiar with the matter to give you sound legal advice.
After a dog bite, it’s difficult to assess the extent of the injury and future medical expenses. Therefore, you should report the dog bite to the police, take pictures of the wound, and get immediate medical help.
After you’ve resolved the immediate crisis, speak to one of our experienced personal injury lawyers at Dixon Injury Law Firm.
Dog Bite Attacks and Dog Bite Settlements in St. Louis
Can someone sue for a dog bite? Absolutely. Here are two examples:
In August of 2018, a 100-pound Pit Bull mauled a 9-year-old girl on a bicycle in St. Ann, MO. The dog then attacked an ice cream man who tried to rescue the girl.
According to police, the Pit Bull had shown a propensity to be dangerous in the past but had never seriously injured anyone before. The parents of the little girl filed a suit against the dog’s owners for the child’s endangerment.
The victim’s claim won, and the dog’s owners were charged with endangering the welfare of a child, animal creating a nuisance, and failure to register the dog with the city/breeding dogs within the city for commercial purposes, as well as being required to compensate the victim for present and future medical expenses and pain and suffering damages.
Similarly, in December of 2018, a 2-year-old child was seriously bitten by a dog in Normandy, MO, while visiting her grandmother’s house. The dog that caused the incident was a random dog that lunged at the toddler and her cousin, knocked them to the ground and bit the young girl’s face, causing an open wound on her cheek.
While the child has since had plastic surgery for the injuries caused in the accident, according to authorities, the dog wasn’t immediately caught, and the dog’s owners weren’t immediately identified at the time of the accident.
How Much Money Do You Get From a Dog Bite Lawsuit?
An attorney for injury could advise you if a dog attack would entitle you to compensation. Although claims for a dog bite could be against a business if, for instance, a company watchdog attacked someone during employment, most Americans make claims against a dog owner’s insurance company.
How much you get depends on the circumstances of the attack, so case results differ. However, the average price goes higher every year, due mainly to the higher cost of medical treatment. According to the Insurance Journal, it went up 94 percent from 2003 to 2015. In 2015, it was $37,214.
Although there are no figures for 2019, it is important to keep in mind that while these figures may represent averages, there is no limit to the value of a dog bite injury, and it depends on the individual injuries. A facial dog bite injury may be valued far above $1,000,000 depending on the damage done.
Dogs have also killed children before, and their attacks have also resulted in the loss of body parts. These tragic situations demand much higher values to make up for what was taken.
Because the settlement figures vary greatly, dog owners rely on their homeowner’s or renter’s insurance policy to cover them against a dog bite liability. Insurance coverage for dog bite injuries can vary greatly depending on how much coverage was purchased.
While insurance policy limits applicable to dog bites are often $100,000 to $300,000, it is not uncommon to see much higher limits. An injury lawyer will search for higher limits through umbrella policies and confirm all available insurance policies are located.
Why Choose the Dixon Injury Firm: St. Louis Dog Bite Lawyers
If you are the victim of a dog bite attack, you need to hire a lawyer to represent your case. Dog bite injuries can be expensive and often cause physical, mental, and emotional harm.
An experienced St. Louis dog bite attorney can help you gather evidence of the attack, file reports of the animal’s dangerous behavior, and bring a claim against the dog’s owner or keeper to recover compensation for your injuries and financial damages.
Criminal charges for dog bite could occur under C.R.S. 18-9-202.5. If a dog owner has a dangerous dog that causes injury or death. If a dog attack causes an injury, it’s often a misdemeanor; if the dog attack causes death, it’s a felony.
Christopher Dixon and the St. Louis dog bite lawyers at the Dixon Injury Firm handle dog bite claims and other areas of personal injury. Because our goal at the Dixon Injury Firm is to recover the most compensation for present and future damages associated with dog bite attacks and offer support during this challenging time to victims and their family members, our law firm offers a “free case evaluation.”
Recognized by the National Trial Lawyers Association as a “Top 100 Trial Lawyer,” Chris Dixon has the experience needed to produce the best results for your case and make sure that you are stress-free during the process of recovering compensation for your dog bite injuries.
For more information on how our dog bite lawyers in St. Louis can fight for your rights and recover the most compensation for your harm and losses, call (314) 409-7060, 855-40-CRASH, or contact the Dixon Injury Firm today to schedule a free consultation and discuss the options available to your dog bite case in St. Louis.