Did you know that if you’ve been bitten, attacked or otherwise hurt by someone else’s dog, you could be entitled to what many people call dog bite compensation? It’s true – dog bite lawsuits in Texas make fairly frequent appearances in court. And as much as we’d like to think that all dogs are friendly, the truth is that some aren’t.
Here’s what you need to know about dog bite compensation.
Dog Bite Compensation: What Are Owners Responsible For?
In Texas, there’s no specific statute that relates to a pet owner’s responsibilities when a dog harms someone. However, there is precedent – in 1974, the Texas Supreme Court that the injured person must show that the dog’s owner knew that the dog had either acted aggressively or had bitten a person in the past – or that the owner failed to use reasonable care to control the dog, and as a result, it bit someone.
Texas’s negligence rule also applies to other types of injuries – not just bites. For example, if a dog pounces on you and knocks you over in a way that causes you injury, you may be eligible for dog bite compensation.
How Do You Get Dog Bite Compensation?
Like many other types of personal injury cases, the majority of dog bite lawsuits are actually settled out of court. Texas’s statue of limitations applies, though, which means you only have 2 years to file a claim – if you wait longer than that, you’re unlikely to see any type of dog bite compensation at all.
In order to recover dog bite compensation, you’ll have to show that the owner failed to use reasonable care. If the dog was out roaming the neighborhood when it should’ve been in a fenced yard, the owner’s failure to use reasonable care is a lot easier to prove than it would be if you approached the dog while it was on a leash and being controlled by the owner.
Here’s something you need to know, though: You probably won’t be eligible for dog bite compensation if you were trespassing at the time the dog bit you. Our laws are written to exclude protections for those who are illegally on someone else’s private property.
How Much Dog Bite Compensation Can You Get?
Every case is different, and many people settle for dog bite compensation out of court. There’s no way to predict how a judge will rule, either. Generally, though, people ask for dog bite compensation that covers:
- Past, present and future medical bills
- Lost wages
- Domestic services and assistance
- Increased living expenses
- Mental anguish
- Pain and suffering
Related: What are compensatory damages?
Do You Need to Talk to an Attorney About Dog Bite Compensation?
If you were injured by a dog – whether you were bitten, knocked over, or suffered another type of injury – we may be able to help you. Call us today for a free consultation with a caring and compassionate dog bite injury lawyer who will answer your questions and provide you with the legal guidance you need.