Skip to content

Chicago Dog Bite Lawyer


Dog attacks can lead to serious physical and psychological injuries, making it essential for victims in Chicago to understand their legal rights. A Chicago dog bite lawyer specializes in representing individuals who have been bitten or injured by dogs. These legal professionals are well-versed in Illinois state laws pertaining to dog bites and are equipped to navigate the complexities of personal injury claims.

Selecting the right legal counsel is crucial. A knowledgeable lawyer can be the difference between a well-handled case and one that fails to secure the compensation the victim deserves. Chicago dog bite lawyers are typically experienced in evaluating the circumstances of the attack, identifying responsible parties, and arguing a case effectively in court, if necessary. Their expertise ensures that victims are not left navigating the legal system alone, which can be critical in achieving a successful outcome.

Understanding Dog Bite Laws in Illinois

In Illinois, dog bite laws are designed to protect victims by imposing strict liability on pet owners. This legal framework lays out the responsibilities of dog owners and the recourse available to bite victims.

Illinois Dog Bite Statute and Liability

The fundamental statute governing dog bites in Illinois is the Animal Control Act. Under this Act, the owner of a pet is strictly liable for injuries caused by the dog biting another person without provocation. This liability holds regardless of the dog’s previous behavior or the owner’s knowledge of such behavior.

Strict liability in the context of dog bites means that the victim does not need to prove negligence. The owner is liable for the damages if the following conditions are met:

  • The injured party was lawfully in the place they were bitten (e.g., not trespassing).
  • The dog was unprovoked.
  • The dog attack directly caused the victim’s injuries.

Illinois does not follow a “one bite” rule – which in some jurisdictions gives a dog one “free” bite before the owner is held liable. Instead, liability is immediately established under the conditions described above.

It is important for dog owners in Illinois to be aware of their responsibilities under these laws to prevent potential legal actions and for victims to understand their rights to seek compensation for their injuries.

Filing a Dog Bite Lawsuit in Chicago

When a person suffers from a dog bite injury in Chicago, IL, a lawsuit may be necessary to recover compensation. A knowledgeable lawyer can guide victims through the legal process, helping them understand their rights and the complexities involved in seeking justice.

Navigating the Legal Process

The first step in a dog bite lawsuit is to consult with an experienced personal injury lawyer who understands the specifics of Chicago’s laws. Time is of the essence, as the Illinois statute of limitations typically gives victims two years from the date of the bite to file a claim. Filing a lawsuit involves:

  1. Gathering Evidence:
    • Medical records
    • Photographs of injuries
    • Witness statements
  2. Identifying the Defendant:
    • The dog owner or responsible party
  3. Filing the Complaint:
    • Submission of required legal documents to start the case

Once the suit is filed, there may be a discovery phase, where both sides investigate the circumstances of the incident. This process can include depositions, requests for documents, and interrogatories. If the case does not settle, it will proceed to trial where a verdict will determine the liability and damages.

Damage Compensation and Recovery

Victims of dog bites may be entitled to various forms of compensation, which are generally categorized as compensatory or punitive damages. Compensatory damages can include:

  • Economic Damages:
    • Medical expenses
    • Lost wages
    • Rehabilitation costs
  • Non-Economic Damages:
    • Pain and suffering
    • Emotional distress
    • Mental anguish
    • Scarring or disfigurement

In cases of severe negligence, punitive damages may be awarded. The involvement of the dog owner’s insurance company is crucial, with negotiations often centered around settlements. A skilled lawyer works to maximize financial compensation, considering future expenses like medical treatment and counseling. In cases involving children, especially severe ones, long-term considerations such as disability or scarring are taken into account. If a settlement is not achieved, the lawyer prepares for trial to secure compensation through legal proceedings.

Maximizing Your Financial Recovery

When seeking compensation for a dog bite, understanding the value of your claim and adeptly negotiating with insurance companies are crucial steps toward maximizing your financial recovery.

Calculating Damages and Losses

The foundation for financial recovery after a dog bite is accurately calculating the damages and losses incurred. These typically fall into two categories:

  • Economic Damages: These are the quantifiable costs resulting from the dog bite. They include:
    • Medical Expenses: Immediate and future medical treatment.
    • Lost Income: Wages lost due to time off work.
    • Out-of-Pocket Costs: Expenses not covered by medical insurance.
    • Lost Wages: Long-term income loss due to a resulting disability.
    • Disability: Costs associated with long-term care and accommodations.
  • Non-Economic Damages: These are subjective losses that aren’t easily quantified. They encompass:
    • Pain and Suffering: Physical discomfort and the impact on quality of life.
    • Emotional Distress: Psychological effects stemming from the incident.
    • Punitive Damages: In rare cases, awarded to punish the negligent party.

It’s important for dog bite victims to work with a dog bite lawyer who has extensive knowledge of personal injury law to ensure all categories are thoroughly addressed.

Negotiating with Insurance Companies

An essential part of recovery involves negotiating with insurance companies. A seasoned personal injury law firm can be instrumental in this process, as they:

  • Understand the tactics employed by insurance companies to offer lowball settlements.
  • Can effectively counteract these strategies to argue for just compensation.
  • Are prepared to take legal action if negotiations do not result in a fair offer.
  • Will assert the victim’s rights against any liability insurance providers involved.

Negotiations focus on securing compensation that truly reflects the extent of damages and losses. Experienced dog bite lawyers are adept at circumventing attempts by insurance companies to minimize payouts, ensuring that their clients’ legal options are fully leveraged for optimal compensation in dog bite claims.

If you’ve been bitten by a dog, it’s essential to promptly seek legal help. Our team of experienced professionals in dog bite law is available to offer the necessary support and guidance. Contact us without delay to arrange a consultation and take the initial step towards securing the compensation you are entitled to. Your well-being is our top priority, and we are fully committed to advocating for your rights. Feel free to reach out to us for expert assistance with your dog bite case.

Client Testimonials

They WILL take care of you.

This was the easiest and best experience I've experienced with a law firm. They represented me aggressively and handled my case with finesse and diligence. I highly recommend anyone who is having any issues to reach out to Mike Agruss Law Firm. They WILL take care of you.


He went above and beyond

Mike called me on the weekend to answer a question I had emailed him on a Friday I wasn't expecting to hear from him until Monday. He went above and beyond anything I could have ever expected. Not only is he a excellent attorney he is also a kind, caring and a patient person. I was truly blessed by him, his paralegal, and this law firm.


Thank you everyone!

Yes this team is incredible. They were not only professional and intelligent and thorough, they demonstrated the highest level of care and compassion for what was otherwise a really demoralizing and confusing experience. My case was long and difficult and they kept me in the loop all along the way and brought it to excellent resolution. So grateful to their team especially Rachael who took my first flustered call on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving to partner Jim who carried the case across the line. Oh, and they got a great settlement! Thank you everyone!


I can’t say thank you enough!

I was injured and tried handling things on my own with insurance. My first call it was apparent they weren’t going to help me even though I wasn’t at fault. I was referred to Mike Agruss Law and the experience made what was a nightmare turn into an easy and peaceful experience. They handled everything for me and made sure my medical bills were paid, and I was compensated for loss of wages and more. I came to them in tears, shaken up, and scared. They comforted me and took care of me and my family. I can’t say thank you enough! Thank you, Rachael Mitchell, Jackie Laino, and Ryan Platt!!


Highly recommend

We had a wonderful experience with Mike Agruss Law! They were honest and took care of our issue quickly and efficiently. Highly recommend.


Thank you!

Mike and his team were compassionate, detailed, and displayed excellent professionalism. This is the 1st time I needed a lawyer for legal services. Mike and his team walked me through the process. Agruss law firm are real experts. They fought for me and were able to settle my case. I received more than expected. Thanks to Mike and his team. I felt value and appreciate by them. Thank you!


I highly recommend Mike Agruss and his staff.

The attorneys at Agruss are attentive, hard-working, and genuinely care for their clients and their best interests. I have seen them work tirelessly to ensure the best outcome for clients. I highly recommend Mike Agruss and his staff.


Communication was top notch

Mike Agruss Law was extremely easy to work with. They helped me on two different times. Communication was top notch. If ever in need I would use again and have recommended to several people.


I highly recommend him and his firm!

Mike Agruss is an extremely knowledgeable personal injury attorney who puts his client's best interests first. Whenever I reach out to him with questions, he always gets back to me right away, which is extremely refreshing when dealing with an attorney. I highly recommend him and his firm!


Mike Agruss Law was incredibly helpful

Mike Agruss Law was incredibly helpful and tenacious at fighting for me with my case. I am beyond satisfied with my results and cannot recommend them enough for all the hard work they put in. They really care about what they do and care about their clients and it can be seen in the work they do. All that is left to say was that my case was a win-win all around very happy with the results. Please consider them if you have any issues.



Dog Bite Laws Prioritizes Justice

Contact us via call, email, text, or chat to discuss your case.

Let Us Know About Your Dog Bite

Full Name