Many of us love our furry friends in Brownsville. The unconditional love that these dogs give provides us with companionship we cannot find elsewhere.
However, it’s easy to forget that dogs are also animals that act on their instincts. Although we’re already familiar with our own dogs, we cannot always predict the behavior of others’ dogs.
Dog bites in Brownsville can cause serious injuries. In addition to the physical injuries, they can also result in lifelong trauma for the victim.
At Kenny Perez Law, our experienced Brownsville dog bite lawyers will review your situation and see if you have a case for obtaining compensation.
Give us a call now to get help with your Brownsville dog bite claim.
What Are My Options if a Dog Bites or Injures Me?
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, dogs bite more than 4 million people in the United States every year. A shocking 800,000 of those bites require medical attention.
Don’t take the chance that you’re not among those 800,000.
The first thing you need to do is see a doctor to treat and document your injuries so nothing festers. After that, call us as soon as you can.
No matter how minor or severe your injuries, you may hold the dog owner liable for the incident. This means you may pursue financial compensation for your injuries and for the suffering you endured.
Although Texas has no specific dog bite law, a court ruling established the one-bite rule here. Before you can recover compensation, then, you and your attorney must prove that the dog attacked someone before or that the owner knew the dog was potentially dangerous.
At Kenny Perez Law, our Brownsville dog bit attorneys know how to investigate and look for those criteria in your claim.
The owner of the dog can face criminal charges, even felony charges, in addition to your civil claim.
If a dog attacked and killed a loved one, such as a child, you may be able to bring a wrongful death claim against the dog’s owner. Our attorneys can guide you through this difficult time and review all your legal options with you.
What Factors Affect Liability?
The owner is the most common party liable for a dog bite injury.
However, liability still depends on:
- Negligence: Owners are found liable for a dog bite injury if the injury happened because of their negligence or recklessness—letting the dog run unleashed, in defiance of the law, for example.
- Provocation: A dog owner might not bear liability if the victim provoked the dog.
- Trespassing: The owner of the dog may not bear liability for injuries sustained by a victim who trespasses on the owner’s private property. One exception to this rule is when the victim is less than six years old.
The insurance company representing the defendant may try to blame you for the attack due to trespass or provocation and lower your compensation accordingly.
That’s why you need to call us. We will investigate to see if we can dispute the defense’s claims and fight on your behalf for full restitution.
How Do I File a Brownsville Dog Bite Claim?
Start by calling Kenny Perez Law. We can file a Brownsville dog bite claim for you.
Here are the essential steps in most successful dog bite claims:
Report the Incident
After seeking medical attention for an injury from a dog attack, you will need to file a report with the Brownsville Animal Control Department as soon as you can. If we take your case, we can do this for you.
By filing this report, you have a valid and useful document later that you can show when seeking compensation for your troubles. The animal control department often investigates the incident and may require your cooperation if you want to take legal action.
This investigation can gather witness testimony, issue subpoenas, and schedule hearings to determine how and why the accident happened.
Evidence Collection and Documentation
Although the Brownsville Animal Control Department will likely investigate the incident, you should also start collecting evidence of the attack.
You should start gathering relevant details as soon as possible. For example, you want to note the date, time, and location of the incident and obtain statements from witnesses.
Additional information to collect:
- Information about the dog owner, including information about their renters or homeowners insurance
- Photos of the injury
- Photos of the animal
- Dog license information
- Details of any history of dog bites
- Proof of rabies vaccinations
- Any prior notices on the part of the landlord
We don’t expect you to do any of this yourself, except perhaps photographing your injuries. We know how to complete all of these tasks in ways that juries and insurance adjusters find compelling.
Get in Touch With a Brownsville Dog Bite Lawyer
Deciding to pursue legal action after you suffered an injury can overwhelm you if you have to do it by yourself. Our Brownsville dog bite lawyers can make the process much easier.
Apart from providing legal guidance, our Brownsville dog bite attorney can try to negotiate a fair settlement amount for you—and if the insurance company digs in its heels, we can take them to court if we feel your case is strong enough.
How to Choose a Brownsville Dog Bite Lawyer
Look for these qualities when selecting your Brownsville dog bite attorney.
Experience Is a Must
Texas dog bite law is complicated, and proving liability under it requires lawyers with a specific skill set and knowledge.
When selecting your attorney, go for one with many years of experience handling dog attack cases. You have a higher chance of obtaining compensation for your dog bite claim with an experienced lawyer.
Obtain Positive Testimonials
You can ask for references from an attorney’s past clients. Getting to know a lawyer through former clients can provide you with valuable insight as to what you can expect when working with them.
These former clients can also vouch for the skills, knowledge, and success of a Brownsville dog bite lawyer.
See if They Offer Free Consultation
Our personal injury lawyers provide potential clients with free consultations. Kenny Perez Law wants to make sure that our clients know what they can expect from us.
What Damages Are Awarded for Brownsville Dog Bite Claims?
Under the law, damages mean any harm or loss sustained by the victim due to an injury to their person, reputation, or property.
Victims of dog attacks could seek several recoverable damages based on incident severity and their resulting losses.
The common damages awarded for dog bite injury claims are:
- Expenses from pain and suffering
- Any medical or surgical costs
- Lost wages due to missing work because of the injury
- Estimated hospital expenses
- Emotional distress
A Brownsville Dog Bite Lawyer Answers Your Questions
A National Institutes of Health study estimates that three million people suffered from dog bites in a recent year. Most bites were on a finger, and the second most common place for a dog bite was the face. Depending on the extent of the bite, victims can sustain extensive scarring and other long-term damages.
Our dog bite lawyers get many questions regarding dog bites, some of which are answered below. If you have specific questions about your situation, reach out to an experienced dog bite attorney.
What do I do if a dog bit me?
If you are able, try to get a picture of the dog. If the owner is nearby, let the owner know that the dog bit you. Ask the dog owner for their homeowner’s insurance information. As soon as possible, rinse the dog bite with cold water. If it is deep or bleeding extensively, seek medical attention immediately.
If your bite is severe, a dog bite lawyer can help you recover lost wages, medical expenses, pain and suffering, and other damages you might deserve.
What kinds of injuries do people usually sustain in a dog attack?
Most people think of deep wounds when they think about dog bites. However, a dog attack can also cause other injuries, including broken bones and traumatic brain injuries.
Some of the injuries people frequently sustain in a dog attack include:
- Cuts, scrapes, and bruises;
- Eye and face injuries;
- Traumatic brain injuries and other head, neck, and back injuries if the dog is large and causes the victim to fall to the ground;
- Simple and compound fractures; and
- Strains, sprains, pulled and torn muscles, and other soft tissue injuries.
How much is my dog bite case worth?
The compensation a dog bite victim might recover depends on the severity of the dog bite.
In most cases, dog bite victims recover economic damages, which are reimbursement for injury-related expenses.
- Economic damages include past and future medical expenses, past and future lost wages, replacement of damaged personal property, and in the case of a death of a loved one, funeral, burial, and/or cremation expenses.
A victim might also recover non-economic damages for emotional and psychological injuries.
- Non-economic damages include pain and suffering, emotional distress, loss of quality of life, loss of companionship and/or consortium, loss of use of a body part or bodily function, inconvenience, and extra compensation for excessive scarring, disfigurement, and/or amputation.
- Punitive damages are difficult to recover because the court only orders a defendant to pay them as a punishment for grossly negligent or intentional actions or failure to act. Most dog bite cases do not fall into this category unless the victim can prove that the dog owner intentionally told the dog to attack them or let the dog loose knowing that it was a dangerous dog.
My neighbor’s dog bit me on my own property. Could I have a case?
Texas has laws that state that a dog must be under its owner’s control at all times and not running loose. If your neighbor’s dog was loose and entered your property and attacked you, you may have a case. Contact an experienced attorney to discuss the specifics of your situation.
What if a stray dog bit me?
In most cases, municipalities are not responsible for stray dogs. However, if a dog in a county or city-run dog shelter gets loose, you may sue the county or city for a dog bite.
If I was invited onto a property and a dog bit me, could I have a case?
When a dog owner invites you onto their property, whether to socialize or work, the dog owner has a duty of care to protect you from their dog. However, if the dog owner can prove that you were teasing or torturing the dog, the dog owner might not be legally responsible for the dog bite.
Do I have a case if a police dog bit me?
In most cases, no. However, if you can prove the police officer used excessive force by sending the dog after you, you might have a case.
My neighbor’s dog killed my pet or livestock. Do I have a case?
Dog owners cannot let a dog run loose if it will attack livestock. In most cases, if a dog kills or injures someone else’s pet or livestock, that other person can file a case against the dog’s owner.
My dog bite is relatively minor, but did require stitches. Can I still sue the dog owner?
If a dog bite requires medical attention, you can generally file a claim against the owner for the cost of that care. Always seek medical attention after a dog bite to ensure that the dog did not do more damage than you think it did.
What if the dog owner’s insurance won’t pay for my damages?
In most cases, the dog owner’s property insurance will pay for a dog attack. However, if the dog owner did not claim the dog on the insurance or if the dog owner does not have enough insurance to cover all of your damages, you can usually sue the dog owner directly.
My friend’s dog bit me, and I don’t want to sue my friend, but I need money to pay for my medical bills. What should I do?
In most cases, a dog owner’s property insurance will cover your medical expenses and other damages caused by a dog bite. Ask your friend for their property owner’s insurance information.
How much does it cost for an attorney to handle a dog bite case?
At our firm, an initial case evaluation is free. If we take your case, we take it on a contingency fee basis, which means that you only pay if we win a settlement or a trial award for you.
Brownsville Dog Bite Lawyers You Can Trust
Kenny Perez Law has a team of knowledgeable and experienced attorneys who will help analyze your case and produce the best outcome for you.
If you were injured by a dog you do not own and did not provoke, call us to see if you can pursue compensation for your troubles. Our Brownsville dog bite lawyers are ready to guide you on your case.
Kenny Perez Law
3505 Boca Chica Blvd Suite 151
Brownsville, TX 78521
“Definitely a law firm that you can trust! Professional, reasonable, and knowledgeable. The legal team has great customer service skills. They were able to help and guide us every step of the way after our accident.” – Cynthia Barrera
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