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Can I Sue a Dog Owner if I Was Bitten by Their Dog?

Posted on in Personal Injury Lawsuits

waukegan dog bite lawyerDog bite laws can be complicated in certain states, but Illinois is considered a strict liability state when it comes to dog bites. This means that dog owners or custodians can be liable for damages regardless of whether a dog has acted aggressively in the past. People may have claims for other injuries caused by a dog besides bites in some cases.

People who have been bitten or attacked by dogs need to understand that insurance companies do not willingly pay these claims without trying to reduce payouts or avoid them completely. Anybody who is dealing with a dog bite or attack injury in Illinois will want to retain legal counsel for assistance in recovering as much financial compensation as possible.

Illinois Dog Bite Laws

The Animal Control Act in Illinois provides that the owner or custodian of a dog becomes liable for civil damages to any person who is attacked or injured by a dog. Dog bite injuries may include severe lacerations, infections, and scarring. People may be able to recover many kinds of economic and non-economic damages in these cases, including medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.

One important exception to state law concerning dog bites relates to people who are trespassing. When an individual is bitten by a dog while trespassing, they presumably cannot recover any damages for injuries suffered because of the dog since they were not lawfully on the property. 

Many other states have what is known as a “one bite rule,” under which a dog will be considered aggressive if it has a prior history of biting people, but Illinois has no such rule. As a strict liability state, a dog owner can be liable for their dog’s actions even when a dog has no history of aggressive actions.

Most dog owners have insurance companies covering them, but insurers rarely want to pay anything significant for a dog bite. You may have to file a civil lawsuit against a dog owner to recover compensation and a personal injury lawyer can assist you.

Contact a Lake County Dog Bite Lawyer

Were you or your loved one recently bitten by a dog in Illinois? Do not wait to speak to a Waukegan dog bit attorney at Salvi & Maher, L.L.C. for help pursuing all of the possible compensation in your case. 

Our firm understands how stressful these types of cases can be for people and we work tirelessly to ensure that all individuals bitten by dogs are able to get justice. Call 847-662-3303 or contact us online to receive a free initial consultation. 





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