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Dog Bite Injury Attorneys in Chicago, Illinois

Dogs bite nearly 5 million people a year in the U.S. Almost half of those injured are children, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says. About 800,000 Americans each year seek medical attention for wounds from dog bites, and 386,000 require emergency room treatment. About 16 people die every year after being attacked by a dog. The CDC’s figures do not consider the psychological trauma of experiencing an animal attack.

It is a simple fact of life that dogs bite. This includes any dog of any breed. A dog bite can be anything from a nip to a traumatic attack that leaves a serious injury. A serious injury suffered in a dog attack is reason to hold the dog’s owner accountable, and for the dog bite victim to seek compensation for all medical expenses, pain and suffering and other harm caused by the bite.

If you have suffered a serious injury or lost a loved one in an animal attack that occurred in the Chicago area or anywhere else in Illinois, the dog bite attorneys at Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard P.C. want to help you.

Our firm has a history of protecting the rights of dog bite victims, including securing a $1.125 million settlement in 2013 on behalf of a 17-year-old Zion

boy who was attacked by dog while riding his bike (one of the largest settlement of its kind in Illinois). You can read the full press release on the case here.

To learn more about how we can assist you, call us today or use our online form and schedule a free consultation.

icoChicago Dog Bites and Illinois Law

The Illinois Animal Control Act erased the “one free bite” law. The law had excused dog owners from being liable for a bite by their pet if they were not aware of the animal’s propensity to bite.

Today, Illinois law specifically states:

“If a dog or other animal, without provocation, attacks or injures any person who is peaceably conducting himself in any place where he may lawfully be, the owner of such dog or other animal is liable in damages to such person for the full amount of the injury sustained.”

Serious Injuries from Dog Bites iconSerious Injuries from Dog Bites

A serious dog bite is not a playful nip or even a minor injury that bruises someone who came into contact with a dog at the wrong time. A serious dog attack is one that includes biting and scratching that causes significant traumatic injury, such as deep cuts, tearing, fractures or more. A serious attack by a dog can also cause significant emotional and psychological injury.

dog attack lawyerThe CDC reports that about 885,000 dog bite victims very year – or 20 percent of all of those who are bitten by dogs – require medical attention for their injuries.

The most common victims are:

  • Children ages 5-9
  • Elderly people
  • Post letter carriers.

Dogs most often bite a person’s arm, hand, leg, foot, head or neck, according to the CDC. Common injuries in dog attacks include:

  • Cuts, bruises and scratches
  • Puncture wounds
  • Tearing (avulsion)
  • Dislocations
  • Fractures
  • Amputations
  • Crushing (head / skull injuries).

DogsBite.org, a nonprofit, public education website about dangerous dog breeds, reports that serious dog attacks can result in acute injuries that can require $250,000 to $1 million in specialized medical care.

The CDC states that about 27,000 dog bite victims every year undergo reconstructive surgery. This may include skin grafting, tissue expansion and scar diminishment. A victim may require multiple procedures over several years.

Compensation for Your Dog Bite Expenses iconCompensation for Your Dog Bite Expenses

Dog bite victims may seek compensation to cover their:

  • Past and future medical expenses
  • Lost income and diminished earning capacity
  • Pain and suffering
  • Emotional distress
  • Other related losses.

Chicago Dog Bite LawyerClaims can be made against the dog owner and, possibly, a third party if that party’s negligence caused the injury.

People who have been seriously injured by an attacking dog deserve compensation and should not be reluctant to seek it through civil legal action – it will not come out of a friend or neighbor’s pocket. The compensation recovered in a dog bite claim almost always come from the dog owner’s insurance, such as homeowners’ insurance or business liability insurance.

The Insurance Information Institute and State Farm Insurance report that dog bites accounted for more than one-third of all homeowners’ insurance liability claim dollars paid out in 2013 and resulted in more than $483 million in compensation for victims. The average payment for dog bite claims was $27,862.

An experienced dog bite lawyer can investigate your dog bite case to determine whether the dog’s owner is liable and calculate the compensation you may be due for your injuries.

Many dog bite claims can be settled though negotiations with the dog owner’s insurance company. If a proper settlement agreement cannot be reached, we would be ready to pursue appropriate compensation for you in court.

ico3Taking Action after a Dog Bite

You can act to help yourself, a loved one or a friend who has been injured by a dog bite. Here are some steps you should try to follow:

    • Seek medical attention as soon as possible. Any dog bite should be seen by a doctor.
    • Immediately report the incident to the police and obtain a copy of the police accident report.
    • Obtain the name and contact information of the dog owner if possible.
    • Get the name and contact information of any people who witnessed the attack.
    • Photograph the animal that caused your injuries as well as the location of the incident.

dog bite injury

  • Photograph any visible injuries you have suffered as result of the incident with the animal.
  • Save any clothing that may have been damaged by the animal.
  • Save and, if possible, photograph any property damaged by the animal.
  • Do not communicate with the owner of the dog or the owner’s insurance company. If you accept any form of compensation, you may waive your right to sue for additional damages.
Do You Need A Chicago Dog Bite Attorney?Contact a Chicago Dog Bite Attorney Today

If you or a loved one has suffered a dog bite or another animal attack that caused serious injury or scarring, you have rights that deserve to be protected. Contact Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard P.C. without delay and schedule a free consultation.

We will provide a team of legal professionals, medical experts and investigators who are dedicated to your case. We can help you make informed decisions about your legal options. We will work hard to make sure you receive the compensation you deserve.

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VERDICTS AND SETTLEMENTS

  • $3.75 Million – Wrongful death
  • $4.5 Million – Personal Injury
  • $6 Million Medical Malpractice Settlement - (January 26, 2015)  Patrick A. Salvi, Patrick A. Salvi II and Kathleen Naughton-Sparks of...

    $6 Million Medical Malpractice Settlement

    (January 26, 2015)  Patrick A. Salvi, Patrick A. Salvi II and Kathleen Naughton-Sparks of Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard P.C., obtained a $6 million medical malpractice settlement on behalf of a downstate Illinois family whose baby suffered brain damage near the time of birth.

     

    On the morning of January 16, 2010, the plaintiff’s mother arrived at the hospital in labor. Soon after, the fetal monitor showed signs that the baby was in distress. Unfortunately, the doctor and nurses failed to appropriately respond to a non-reassuring fetal monitor strips and waited too long to perform a C-section. A fetal maternal hemorrhage caused the baby to lose blood into her mother’s circulation which led to the baby having diminished red blood cells and hypoxia. The doctor failed to consider the baby would be anemic at the time of delivery and did not recognize a sinusoidal fetal heart rate pattern, which delayed the transfusion of blood to correct the baby’s anemia. The hypoxia ultimately led to irreversible brain damage. The child is permanently disabled and will need around-the-clock nursing care and ongoing therapy for the rest of her life.

     

    “The settlement will help provide this little girl with the care she needs and will help her family with the daily work necessary to keep her healthy,” said Patrick A. Salvi, Managing Equity Partner at Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard P.C.

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