Who is responsible? Their dog was running loose and came unto my property. I was injured and have hospital bills to pay.
Missouri Revised Statutes
273.036. 1. The owner or possessor of any dog that bites, without provocation, any person while such person is on public property, or lawfully on private property, including the property of the owner or possessor of the dog, is strictly liable for damages suffered by persons bitten, regardless of the former viciousness of the dog or the owner's or possessor's knowledge of such viciousness. Owners and possessors of dogs shall also be strictly liable for any damage to property or livestock proximately caused by their dogs. If it is determined that the damaged party had fault in the incident, any damages owed by the owner or possessor of the biting dog shall be reduced by the same percentage that the damaged party's fault contributed to the incident. The provisions of this section shall not apply to dogs killing or maiming sheep or other domestic animals under section 273.020.
2. Any person who is held liable under the provisions of subsection 1 of this section shall pay a fine not exceeding one thousand dollars. The remedies provided by this section are in addition to and cumulative with any other remedy provided by statute or common law.
Absolutely call an experienced personal injury attorney immediately. There are a number of steps that you should take in order to make sure that you're compensated fully and fairly for the injuries you suffered as a result of the dog owner's negligence. For starters, that attorney will likely advise you not to speak with any insurance company, as you may unknowingly make a statement that could hurt any claim you may have. You'll also likely be advised to seek any and all treatment recommended by a health care professional. Your health is the most important thing with which to concern yourself. Your lawyer should then handle the legal aspect of the incident. Good luck to you.
WARD & ECCHER | Trial Attorneys
It sounds like the owner or keeper of the dog is responsible, however, this needs to be checked with a competent personal injury attorney. Many states have varied the common law and have enacted specific dog bite statutes.
You should obtain needed medical care and treatment immediately and follow the doctor's advice. Do not give any statement to the adverse party or insurance company nor grant them access to any medical records. Photograph the injuries and the damage done to any property. Contact a personal injury attorney in your area as soon as possible so that you can protect your rights. You may also find it helpful to review the Legal Guides I have published on Avvo.com dealing with many of the issues you are now facing. The Guides can be accessed through my profile page on Avvo.com.
If this information has been helpful, please indicate below.
Mr. Lundeen is licensed to practice law in Florida and Vermont. The response herein is not legal advice and does not create an attorney/client relationship. The response is in the form of legal education and is intended to provide general information about the matter within the question. Oftentimes the question does not include significant and important facts and timelines that, if known, could significantly change the reply and make it unsuitable. Mr. Lundeen strongly advises the questioner to confer with an attorney in your state in order to ensure proper advice is received.
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