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What You Should Know About Pursuing Compensation for a Dog Bite in Illinois

Posted on in Dog Bites

Rockford personal injury attorneysWhile many consider dogs to be “man’s best friend,” not all dogs are friendly. If you have been bitten by someone’s dog, you may have had to pay extensive emergency room bills and missed time from work. If the injury you sustained was the fault of someone else, it is only fair that he or she should pay for your damages. However, a successful dog bite personal injury claim can be hard to accomplish without qualified legal counsel. If you have suffered a dog bite injury in Illinois, there are a few things you should keep in mind.

Dog Owners Are Only Responsible in Certain Circumstances

According to Illinois law, a dog owner is legally responsible for your damages caused by a dog bite if several criteria are met. First, you must have been bitten while in a public place or while lawfully in a private place.  You would likely be able to sue a dog owner if his or her dog attacked you on a public sidewalk, for example. However, if you were walking through someone else’s back yard without their permission, this may be technically considered trespassing. In this type of situation, it can be nearly impossible to receive compensation for damages.

The other important element of a dog bite case is that you did not provoke the dog or instigate the animal into biting you. In most cases, petting a dog is not provocative, as you might expect, but throwing things or hitting the animal would be considered provocation.  

Understanding Illinois "Strict Liability" Laws

Illinois is a "strict liability" state when it comes to dog bite injuries. This means that an owner is responsible for his dog biting someone even if he or she did not know the dog was capable of biting someone. Unlike in other states, an Illinois dog-owner is legally responsible for all damages resulting from his or her dog attacking or biting someone else even if it was the first time the dog ever acted aggressively. You do not have to prove that the owner knew the dog was dangerous or failed to use reasonable care in order to bring a successful injury claim against him or her.

Contact a Rockford Dog Bite Injury Lawyer

If you or a loved one was attacked by a dog and suffered a bite injury, it is only fair that the dog owner should pay for your losses. To speak with a Winnebago County personal injury attorney about pursuing compensation, call Mannarino & Brasfield, A Division of KJS, at 815-215-7561 today. Your initial consultation is free.

 

Source:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs3.asp?ActID=1704

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