Dog attacks in Texas
Texas led the nation in dog-bite fatalities from 2005-2013 and tied for the second most dog-related fatalities in 2016.
Top 9 States in Fatal Dog Attacks and Criminal Charges Filed (2005-2017)
At Webb Cason, our Corpus Christi injury attorneys understand the Texas laws regarding dog bites and we know how to ensure you are compensated for your medical costs as well as your pain and suffering as the victim of a dog attack.
dog bite statistics
Homeowner insurers paid out $675 million in liability claims related to dog bites and other dog-related injuries in 2018.
The average cost per claim nationally has risen more than 103 percent from 2003 to 2018, due to increased medical costs as well as the size of settlements, judgments and jury awards given to plaintiffs.
Approximately 4.5 million dog bites occur each year in the United States.
Who is Liable in Dog Bite Cases?
Commonly, the defendant in a dog bite case in Texas will be the owner of the animal. However, liability can vary depending on the case itself.
Texas has something in place called the “one bite rule,” which means that owners are liable in the following situations:
The dog’s owner was aware that the animal was aggressive or had bitten someone previously
The dog’s owner did not properly control the dog, showing negligence and allowing the bite to occur
Proving negligence can be arduous and complicated, which, is why you need an experienced injury attorney on your side.
Dog Bite Injury Claims & Insurance Companies
Typically, homeowners or renter’s insurance will cover dog bite injury cases in Texas. If you or a loved one were injured in a dog bite accident, you will likely file a claim and work towards negotiating a settlement with the at-fault party’s insurance company.
Dog Bite Claims - Homeowner’s Liability Insurance
Although homeowner’s insurance policies may vary, most companies have liability limits of $100,000 to $300,000. The insurance covers medical expenses and associated damages. If your claim exceeds this amount, the dog’s owner may have to cover the rest of your damages.
Some insurance companies will not insure homeowners who own certain breeds of dogs they consider dangerous. Other insurance companies consider claims on a case-by-case basis. Therefore, the value of your case in an insurance settlement is determined in part by the homeowner’s insurance policy and the coverage the provider offers.
Dog Bite Claims - Renter’s Liability Insurance
Renter’s insurance may also cover injuries you or a loved one sustained from a dog bite. Like homeowner’s insurance, insurers may exclude certain dog breeds from coverage regardless of the circumstances of the accident or who is at fault.
Most renter’s insurance companies provide coverage for dog bites up to $100,000. If a renter has an umbrella policy, however, a provider may increase the coverage. If the renter’s insurance policy does not cover all of your claim, they may be liable for covering the rest of your claim.
what to do if you were attacked by a dog or other animal
Before you talk to the insurance company, make sure you:
Document Your Medical Expenses - You should have your injuries examined and treated immediately. Make sure you keep all bills and receipts for treatment you receive including prescriptions, physical therapy, follow-up doctor visits, or surgeries. Insurance companies require documentation to validate a claim.
File A Claim After The Accident - If you wait too long to file a claim for a dog bite, it may affect your claim and your case. The statute of limitations to file a personal injury claim, including dog bite injuries, in Texas is two years under Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code, Title 2 § 16.033.
Avoid Admitting Fault For The Accident - Even if you believe you may be at fault for sustaining a dog bite injury, you should avoid claiming liability. Do not admit fault to the insurance company, the dog owner, property owner, or the other party’s attorney.
Reject An Unfair Settlement Offer - The insurance company’s settlement offer should reflect your case, which includes your injuries, medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and non-economic damages.
Hire A Dog Bite Attorney In Texas - A Texas dog bite attorney may be able to help you establish liability for the accident, correspond with insurance companies, manage your case, and file a claim or lawsuit on your behalf.
If you have suffered pain and/or financial losses due to an animal bite in or around Corpus Christi, contact Webb Cason to learn about your rights to be reimbursed. We work on a contingency fee basis, meaning you will have no upfront costs. Under no circumstances, will you ever be out of pocket.