It’s no secret that dogs can be wonderful companions, but it’s important to remember that even our four-legged friends can be unpredictable. Thousands of people are hospitalized daily due to dog attacks—a stark reminder that even beloved pets can cause serious harm if left unattended. Though fatalities are rare, animal attacks almost always result in severe pain and suffering and can lead to thousands of dollars in medical bills and other expenses.

If you or a loved one has suffered a dog bite injury due to an unprovoked attack, Illinois law has provisions that hold the animal’s owner responsible for all your damages. Don’t underestimate the magnitude of these damages. Consult a Springfield dog bite lawyer at Onward Injury Law to hold the owner accountable for their negligence and to recover fair and just compensation for your injuries.

Dog Bite Facts

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) reports that dog bites lead to about 1,000 ER visits per day, with around 25 hospital stays per day across the United States. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), most dog bite injuries occur on the arms, hands, legs, feet, head, or neck. Unfortunately, most dog attack victims are children, with about 50% of dog attacks involving children under 12 years old and around 70% of fatalities occurring in children under ten years old. Most attacks happen in familiar places, often on the pet owner’s property., a website compiling national statistics on dog attacks, reported 48 dog bite fatalities in the United States in 2019. Sadly, many of the popular breeds and crossbreeds in Illinois are commonly involved in dog bite-related human fatalities, according to the CDC.

Illinois Law on Dog Bites and Animal Attacks

The Illinois Animal Control Act holds a negligent owner liable for any injuries or damages resulting from an unprovoked attack by their dog or another animal. This applies to any injuries sustained, even if the animal only attempts to attack without inflicting a bite wound. To recover damages, you must prove the following elements:

  • The owner’s (or whoever was in actual control of the animal at the time) animal attacked, attempted to attack, or otherwise injured you
  • You did not provoke the attack
  • You had a right to be where the attack occurred
  • You were acting peacefully

A knowledgeable and experienced Springfield dog bite attorney working for you as early as possible will help you identify the responsible party and secure just compensation for the negligence involved.

Springfield Local Leash Laws

In Springfield, Illinois, dog owners must always keep their pets on a leash in public places. Failing to do so violates local laws and may result in fines. Additionally, dogs are not allowed to be unattended or ‘loose’ in any street, alley, parkway, or public place, including all sidewalks, regardless of the type of leash used. Even on the owner’s property, dogs must be controlled and humanely confined by a fence, kennel, or similar enclosure.

Should I Hire an Attorney for a Dog Bite in Springfield?

If a dog has bitten you, it is crucial to consider hiring an attorney to help you seek the compensation you deserve. An experienced lawyer can help you navigate the complex legal system and maximize the compensation you receive. Springfield dog bite lawyers can help you:

  • Understand the laws: Dog bite laws in Springfield can be complicated. An experienced attorney can help you understand the laws and ensure you take the necessary steps to seek justice.
  • Maximize compensation: Dog bite attorneys can help you maximize your compensation by negotiating with the insurance company and filing a lawsuit against the negligent party.
  • Avoid mistakes: Mistakes in the legal process can be costly and time-consuming. An attorney can help you avoid costly errors and ensure your case is handled correctly.
  • Representation in court: If your case goes to court, an attorney can represent you and protect your rights.
  • Provide sound advice: Your attorney will be well-versed in Illinois dog bite law and can provide you with the best advice for your case.

Get Help Now With Dog Bite Claims. Call Onward Injury Law.

Did a dog attack you in Springfield, IL? We’re here to help. Call now for a no-obligation free legal consultation. Our injury lawyers will be happy to answer any questions, advise you about the value of your dog bite case and strategies for identifying insurance coverage, and help develop a plan to maximize your compensation. If you hire our team, we will do everything within our power to make the process as easy as possible for you so you can focus on your physical recovery, your family, and returning to your normal life.