Houston Dog Bite Attorneys
Dogs are great companions, but they can also be dangerous. For many different reasons, dogs bite and attack people and leave them suffering from severe and permanent injuries. In many cases, the attack is due to careless supervision – or a lack of any supervision at all – by the dog’s owner or handler. When those incidents occur, it is important for victims to get help from an experienced dog bite lawyer who will aggressively protect their rights.
The Law Offices of Hilda Sibrian will fight for you if you recently suffered injuries due to a dog bite or attack in the Houston area. We know what it takes to hold negligent dog owners and handlers accountable and to pursue the compensation that victims deserve. Our bilingual, Spanish-speaking legal team is available 24/7 to take your call and review your case in a free consultation. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you.
What Should You Do After a Dog Attack in Houston?
What you do immediately after a dog bite in Houston will be important for your health as well as for your potential legal claim. We suggest that you do your best to take the following steps:
• Get information about the dog and dog owner. You should get the dog owner’s name, address and phone number. You should also learn what you can about the dog, including its breed and vaccination history. Also, get the names and contact information of any witnesses.
• Take photos of the dog, attack scene and your injuries. Photos can serve as important evidence in your legal claim. You should also keep the clothes that you wore when the attack happened.
• Report the dog attack. You should call the police as well as local animal control. (See this list of phone numbers for animal control agencies in Houston and surrounding communities in Harris County.) In addition to providing documentation of the attack, your call may prevent others from suffering similar harm from the same dog.
• Get immediate medical attention. You should get your injuries checked and treated as soon as possible. A delay in treatment of a dog bite, for instance, could lead to a serious and potentially deadly infection. A delay may also weaken your ability to collect compensation. An insurer may argue that your injuries were not serious, or the insurer may claim that the dog bite did not cause your injuries.
• Talk with us before you talk with the insurance company. The dog owner’s homeowners’ insurance policy may cover your losses. However, if the insurance company calls, you should refrain from giving a statement or accepting a settlement offer until you speak with a lawyer from The Law Offices of Hilda Sibrian first. We are available 24/7 to take your call and provide a free review of your case.
We represent Houston dog bite victims on a contingency fee basis. So, we will charge no fees unless we secure compensation for you. We don’t want worries about paying for a lawyer upfront to keep you from getting the legal help you need when you need it.
What Are Your Legal Options After a Dog Bite in Houston?
Our legal team will thoroughly investigate your case and explore all options available to you for seeking compensation for your injuries after a dog attack in Houston. Those options may include:
Texas follows the “one-bite” rule. Under this rule, you may be eligible for compensation if you can demonstrate that:
• The dog previously bit or attacked someone before (or acted as if it wanted to attack)
• The owner or keeper of the dog knew or reasonably should have known of the dog’s prior dangerous or vicious conduct.
For instance, you may present evidence of previous police or animal control reports about the dog, or witnesses may report that they saw the dog attack people in the past. If the dog owner kept the dog chained or muzzled or posted a “Beware of Dog” sign in the yard, it may also establish the owner’s knowledge of the dog’s propensity to bite.
You can also seek damages in a dog bite lawsuit by establishing that the dog owner or handler negligently failed to supervise the dog or prevent an attack and, due to that negligence, you suffered injuries. For instance, did the owner walk through the neighborhood without the dog on a leash or fail to keep the dog confined by a fence? To recover damages under this theory, you would not need to show that the dog owner or handler knew or should have known of the dog’s dangerous propensity.
In many cases, you can establish the negligence of a dog owner or keeper by showing that he or she violated a local “leash law” or other animal control law. For instance, under the Houston Code of Ordinances, dog owners and handlers generally must ensure that the pet does not run “at large” without someone having direct physical control over the dog. The Houston Code of Ordinances imposes additional responsibilities if a dog is deemed to be dangerous, aggressive or a nuisance. If the dog owner or handler violates the law, it may be treated as negligence per se.
What Compensation Can You Recover After a Houston Dog Attack?
At The Law Offices of Hilda Sibrian, we realize how dog bites can lead to serious injuries such as cuts, fractures, soft tissue damage, nerve damage and loss of fingers, toes, and limbs. Bites may also lead to infections. Additionally, many victims suffer emotional wounds such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Our goal is to recover full compensation for the physical, emotional and financial harm that you have suffered in a dog bite or attack, including:
• Past and future medical expenses
• Lost income and reduction of future earning ability
• Pain and suffering
• Scarring and disfigurement
• Emotional distress
• Loss of consortium.
In most cases, the dog owner’s homeowners’ insurance will cover the losses caused by a dog bite. However, insurance companies will do everything they can to pay as little as possible to resolve a claim – or nothing at all. This is why you should get an experienced lawyer on your side as early as possible. The lawyer will advocate for you and seek the compensation you are due.
Contact Our Houston Dog Bite Lawyers
Dog bites rarely occur at a convenient time. That is why we make ourselves available 24/7. At our law firm, you will never be “just another claim.” You will be a part of the Sibrian family – and we take care of our own.
Use our bilingual staff, our aggressive legal maneuvers and our dedication to our clients to fight for the compensation that you deserve after a dog bite or attack in Houston. To get started, call or reach us online today for a free consultation.