Columbia Dog Bite Attorneys
Injured in a Dog Attack? We Can Help.
Love them or hate them, dogs are everywhere in our communities these days. Sometimes, people seem to forget dogs are descended from wild animals and can therefore have unpredictable and violent responses to changes in their environment. Dog owners who do not keep their animals leashed and under control can and should be held responsible. Our team can help you file a dog bite claim if you were attacked by an unruly animal.
At DiPasquale Moore, we care about protecting injury victims’ rights to compensation. We understand dog owners love their pets and want to protect them, but they must also take responsibility for everything their pet does. After being attacked, you should not have to bear the additional burden of handling medical bills and other related expenses on your own. Whether you are ready to file a claim or simply have questions about what doing so would entail, our attorneys are here for you. We want you to fully understand your options after a dog attack.
Considering a dog bite claim? Our attorneys can help. Call our Columbia office today at (573) 312-3188 for a free consultation.
When You Can Hold a Dog Owner Liable
Under Missouri law, a dog owner is strictly liable for their pet’s actions. This is good for you if you plan to make a claim. You do not have to ask whether the dog had previously displayed violent tendencies or whether the setting of the attack affects your rights. You can file a claim if:
- You were legally on public or private property at the time of the bite
- You did not take any actions that may have provoked the dog
While a dog owner may have been negligent in some way (such as letting their dog off-leash in an area where leashes were required), it is not necessary to find this type of evidence against them. The fact of a dog biting you is enough to start a claim.
If a Dog Owner Challenges Your Case
Because the law can penalize biting dogs, owners of animals that attack others often do their best to deflect blame. Not only might this result in a dangerous dog hurting someone else, but it might also affect your ability to secure compensation. Because of Missouri’s comparative negligence laws, you are only able to recover compensation for the percentage of your injury caused by someone else. That means if the dog owner was able to argue you were 50% responsible for the attack, your settlement could be cut in half.
We have helped multiple clients in their dog bite cases and are familiar with most defenses an at-fault party may bring. The most common argument is that you in some way provoked the dog. Especially if there were no witnesses to the accident, it can be difficult to counter these claims, even if they are entirely false. Our attorneys can launch a full investigation and come up with a legal strategy that will protect your right to compensation.
Damages in Dog Bite Cases
Dog bites can cause serious harm, both physical and psychological. The greatest danger is perhaps to children, whose height makes them more vulnerable to dogs. However, dogs may also bowl people over, which means their bites can land in dangerous areas.
At the very least, you should visit an Urgent Care clinic after a dog bite for a rabies test and first aid to prevent infection of the wound. Many dog bites also cause deeper harm, like:
- Nerve damage
This is not to mention the post-traumatic stress disorder many dog bite victims develop. Because dogs are so common, this condition may make it especially hard to go out in the world. When working to determine what a fair settlement should look like, your lawyer should take all these variables into account.
Our Team Is Here to Help
A dog bite or attack is a serious matter, and you deserve help with any and all expenses that arise from one. No matter your personal feelings on pets, most everyone can agree dog owners must keep control of their dog at all times, so it does not even have the chance to threaten someone. A lapse in attention can result in an accident that leaves lasting scars.
We want to do our part to help you if you are in this situation. We know you are already dealing with a lot, which is why our attorneys do everything we can to make our clients’ lives easier. With us handling your claim, you will have more time to focus on your health and priorities. Meanwhile, our team will gather evidence, submit any necessary paperwork, and negotiate your settlement so you receive a fair offer. Let us help you get back on your feet after a dog attack.
Call DiPasquale Moore at (573) 312-3188 for a free consultation. Our Columbia attorneys have over 100 years of combined experience.