There is nothing quite as extraordinary as a loyal dog. Perhaps that is one of the reasons dog bites are so traumatic. Not only do you have to deal with physical and economic damages, but also the lingering trauma after the bite. You may need medical care, reconstructive surgeries, and mental health care. It only makes sense for the dog’s owners to pay for your damages.
While that may seem like common sense, some dog owners will try to deny responsibility. They may deny that their dog caused the bite, allege that you provoked the dog, or try other excuses to avoid responsibility. Since many dog bites occur in the homes of friends or family, it can be awkward to pursue compensation. A West Lake Hills dog bite lawyer can help you avoid those uncomfortable feelings by handling negotiations and filing any necessary personal injury claims or lawsuits.
No matter how well-trained, well-behaved, and historically gentle a dog is, it can bite. In addition to biting because of aggression, dogs bite when scared or in pain. Even the most beloved and gentle family dog can bite. When a dog bites an adult, the result can be a painful and inconvenient injury with a potentially lengthy recovery. However, when the victim is a child, the bite can be disfiguring. When multiple dogs attack, they can cause severe injuries or even death. Anyone who will spend time around dogs should know safety protocols.
Following best practices does not mean a person will escape getting bitten. However, ignoring a dog’s warning signs dramatically increases the chances of a bite. Many people may wonder if they can still recover if they helped cause the bite. Texas is a modified comparative fault state—a person can recover if they are 50 percent or less responsible for the accident. A lawyer in West Lake Hills can help a person determine liability for a dog bite.
People refer to Texas’s dog bite statutes as a one-bite rule or say dogs get one free bite. That is partially true. A dog owner is not liable for injuries unless they knew or should have known a dog was vicious. Once an owner knows, they are strictly liable. That means an injured person does not have to demonstrate negligence to recover if the dog has a history.
A person should not let the one-bite rule deter them from seeking damages. A dog bite lawyer in West Lake Hills can examine the evidence to determine if they can establish negligence.
One of the awkward things about trying to recover from a dog bite is that the owners are often neighbors, friends, or family. No one wants to introduce a legal claim to a personal relationship. The good thing is that homeowner’s insurance generally covers dog bite claims. An injured person can bring a claim against the insurance company without personally using their loved ones.
Allowing an attorney in West Lake Hills to handle a dog bite claim can help keep the dispute from getting personal. People should understand an injured person needs financial compensation for a dog bite, especially when it involves significant injuries. Letting the professionals handle it can prevent personal disputes.
Damage valuations are one of the top reasons people might dispute an insurance settlement offer. Insurance companies are notorious for offering low settlement offers. The complicated thing is that a person may not realize the offer is unfair.
The amount may seem like enough to a person unfamiliar with the lifelong expenses that can accompany specific injuries. A dog bite lawyer in West Lake Hills can provide information about anticipated lifelong expenses. With that information, a person is in a better situation to assess settlement offers.
After an injury, it is natural to have questions. You want to know the steps you need to follow to start the financial recovery process. A West Lake Hills dog bite lawyer can provide that information. They can file an insurance claim on your behalf, negotiate with the insurance company, and advise you during settlement negotiations. Contact us today to get started.