In recent weeks, Illinois residents have dealt with the effects of major snowstorms and near-zero temperatures, including the risk of slipping and falling on icy sidewalks and driveways. This risk may increase if you encounter a dog while you are out walking, as unfamiliar and friendly dogs alike may jump on you or run into your path, causing you to lose your balance. Unfortunately, falling on ice can often lead to serious injuries including broken bones, concussions, and more. If you have been injured in a fall caused by a dog, you may wonder whether it is possible to recover compensation from the dog’s owner.

Compensation for Non-Bite Injuries Caused By Dogs

Under Illinois law, a dog’s owner is considered liable for damages when their dog “attacks, attempts to attack, or injures” a person without provocation, provided that the injured person was lawfully permitted to be in the place where the injury occurred. Notably, unlike some other states, Illinois dog owner liability law does not specify that the injuries must have been caused by a bite. Therefore, the law can apply to a person who suffers injuries that require medical attention in a fall for which a dog is responsible. The injured person can pursue both economic damages related to medical care and damaged property, as well as non-economic damages related to pain and suffering, depending on the effects of the injuries.

The Advantages of Strict Liability for Dog Attack Injury Victims

While those who are injured in winter slip and fall accidents can sometimes recover compensation based on Illinois premises liability law, they often face significant obstacles when attempting to do so. First of all, such compensation is only available when the injury happened on another person’s property. Secondly, the injured person must demonstrate that the injury happened because the property owner was negligent in their duty to keep the premises safe, such as by failing to clear a walkway of ice within a reasonable time.

However, if you fall on the ice because of a dog, you may be able to recover compensation with fewer obstacles, because the Illinois dog attack law is one of strict liability. Not only is it possible to pursue compensation regardless of where the injury occurred, as long as you had the legal right to be there, you also do not need to establish that the injury happened due to the dog owner’s negligence. The simple fact of the dog causing the injury without provocation is sufficient to establish liability. 

Contact an Illinois Dog Attack Attorney

If you have been injured by a dog, it is important to work with an attorney who can help you recover full compensation for your damages. At Mevorah & Giglio Law Offices, we have significant experience handling dog attack cases, and we know what it takes to achieve a successful outcome. Contact our Illinois dog attack injury lawyers today at 630-932-9100 for a free consultation.

 

Sources:

https://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs3.asp?ActID=1704&ChapterID=41

https://www.animallaw.info/topic/table-dog-bite-strict-liability-statutes

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