Many households have pets, especially dogs, while other families choose not to have any pets. While they are known as man’s best friend, they are vicious animals that can cause irreparable harm to adults and children. You deserve justice after a dog attack and must contact a Horn Lake personal injury lawyer immediately after a dog attack from Gatti, Keltner, Bienvenu & Montesi, PLC.
Dog Bites Are Common
Every year there are 4.7 million dog bite cases, and they are not just postal workers. Any person can suffer a dog bite injury in Horn Lake. Chihuahuas are known to bite more than other breeds, but due to their size, they do not typically cause fatalities. Larger breeds do cause more severe injuries and death, but that is not to say they are more prone to biting or attacking.
Studies have been keeping track of dog ownership. In 2000, there were 68 million dogs owned in the country, but by 2017, the number was up to 89.7 million. These numbers do not account for homeless dogs. The more dogs in the world, the more possibility of danger.
Over 24 years, 25 breeds were responsible for 238 dog bite fatalities. You should not be wary of one breed but all dogs. You can be in a traumatic dog attack anytime due to a dog owner being negligent and not caring for their dog. You must speak with a dog bite lawyer in Horn Lake after such a harrowing experience.
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Horn Lake Dog Bite Injuries Are Permanent
Dog attacks are prevalent, but the most likely victims are children, especially young children. An attack can result in painful, traumatic, and debilitating injuries that will stay with victims for life. Children are less likely to notice when a dog is aggressive and will approach an unknown dog that attacks them.
Children under four years old account for 65% of all dog bite cases. Dogs of all sizes can cause injury, but the larger the dog, the worse the harm often is. Adults typically suffer arm or hand injuries while children experience face and neck injuries. Common injuries include:
- Nerve damage
- Crush injuries
- Tetanus, rabies, and MRSA infections
- Facial injuries
These injuries require extensive medical treatment, and those bills can bankrupt a family. The negligent dog owner must be responsible for these losses, not the innocent victim.
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Compensation Is Available for Dog Bite Victims in Horn Lake
After a dog attack, you will suffer emotional, financial, and physical losses. You will need to file a home insurance claim and hold the dog owner responsible for their actions or lack thereof, resulting in your injuries. You must consult a Horn Lake dog bite attorney who will look for every avenue of compensation and the negligent party.
Like all personal injury cases in Horn Lake, you can obtain different types of compensation: economic and non-economic. Examples of both include:
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Lost wages
- Loss of enjoyment
- Current and future medical expenses
- Losses for reduced earning capacity from a permanent impairment
You need a Horn Lake dog bite attorney who advocates for victims and can look for every penny you need to move on from this attack.
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How Much a Dog Bite Case Is Worth
The last thing on your mind is money and fighting with the insurance company to get money. One-third of all homeowner’s insurance claims in 2019 were for dog-bite-related injuries. For the same year, there was a total of $797 million in costs.
Statewide for 2018, dog bite injury claims cost a total of $13.4 million with an average of $39,764 per claim. While that is a generalization, remember that each case is unique, with specific challenges. The standard does not mean that is how much you will get as you can suffer damages far exceeding the number.
Your case’s worth will be contingent on factors like age, insurance coverage limits, the details of the attack, and the severity of your injuries. You will require extensive treatment and higher compensation amounts when a dog bite results in disability, disfigurement, or permanent impairment. You must obtain payment for economic losses, including those you will suffer in the future.
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The One-Bite Rule
Missouri has no one bite rule, so a first-time dog bite makes the owner strictly liable. The one bite rule means an owner can only be responsible if the dog has bitten someone before or they should have known the dog would bite a person. Three elements must exist for owner liability:
- The dog bite results in an injury
- The victim did not provoke the dog
- The victim was on private or public property lawfully
Owners who take reasonable action to prevent dog attacks are liable for injuries. Missouri revised Statutes Section 273.036 is specific to dog bites and does not address scratches and other injuries.
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Missouri Statute of Limitations
A dog bite injury is traumatic, and while many victims will attempt to resolve the matter with the owner, that can delay the possibility of compensation. You need to address your legal options with a Horn Lake dog bite lawyer immediately since these claims have a statute of limitations. You will only have five years from the injury date to file a lawsuit.
Filing a lawsuit is very different from settling a case. Five years is not a long time for a personal injury claim, although victims believe it is. Within those five years, you will need to gather pertinent evidence, which can fade if you wait too long.
While you have five years in Horn Lake to file a lawsuit, that doesn’t mean that is the time it will take to settle. Some dog bite injury cases will settle within months, while others will go well beyond the five-year statute.
Call a Dog Bite Attorney in Horn Lake Today
Dog bite injuries will change your life and cause you to find it challenging to find employment or perform daily tasks. Speak with a Horn Lake personal injury lawyer from Gatti, Keltner, Bienvenu & Montesi, PLC, immediately following an accident to secure compensation. Our law firm has been helping dog bite injury victims since 1970, and we have over 150 years of cumulative experience.