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Illinois Personal Injury & Criminal Defense / Blog / Personal Injury / Allstate Attempts to Deny Claim Related to Vicious Dog Attack Resulting in Death

Allstate Attempts to Deny Claim Related to Vicious Dog Attack Resulting in Death


The insurance company, Allstate, has filed a lawsuit against two dog owners whose dog killed an elderly man last year. The widow of the 81-year-old victim filed a lawsuit against the dog owners after her husband was killed in February of 2023. The dog owners asked Allstate to indemnify them from the claim. Allstate is claiming that the policy only covers the individuals named on the policy. The dog owners were actually the son and daughter-in-law of the policyholder. They are not named on the policy. Allstate is asking the court to dismiss them from the lawsuit.

It would be unfortunate for both the dog owners and the plaintiff if Allstate does not cover the claim. Typically, homeowner’s insurance policies pay out in the event of a dog attack. Without an insurance policy to pay the plaintiff’s damages, the plaintiff can only file suit directly against the dog owners. The dog owners may not have the $1 million that the plaintiff is requesting in this lawsuit. In that case, the plaintiff may have a difficult time getting an attorney to take the case if the defendants don’t have the money. Even if the plaintiff wins her lawsuit, the defendants could discharge the award in bankruptcy, and the plaintiff would be left with nothing.

The attack 

According to the plaintiff’s lawsuit, the decedent and his wife were visiting neighbors when they were attacked by three dogs. The decedent later died of injuries he suffered in the attack and his wife was seriously injured. According to the lawsuit, the attacks were unprovoked and occurred outside the dog’s enclosure on the defendant’s property. The plaintiff accuses the defendant of failing to control their dog and prevent the attack and for failing to keep the dogs on their property and secured.

Understanding dog bite laws in Illinois 

Under Illinois Statute 510 ILCS 5/16, every dog owner has a duty of care to ensure that their dogs are kept secured on their property. Many dog attacks happen after the dog has escaped their property. In this case, three dogs were allowed to escape from the defendant’s property and kill a man who was visiting his neighbors.

Illinois is a strict liability state when it comes to dog bites and dog attacks. That means that the plaintiff does not need to prove negligence to assert their claim. They only need to prove injury and that the defendant is the rightful owner of the dog. Not every state works this way. In some states, plaintiffs must establish that the owner knew that the dog was vicious, had foreknowledge of aggressive tendencies, or that the dog had bitten someone else before.

Talk to a Decatur, IL Personal Injury Lawyer Today 

The Decatur personal injury attorneys at Patel Law, PC represent the interests of plaintiffs in lawsuits filed against negligent defendants. If you’ve sustained an injury due to someone else’s negligence, call our office today to schedule a free consultation and learn more about how we can help.



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