We’ve been seeing more dog bites lawsuits brought to us here at Hensley Law Firm over the past year. Whether you’re the victim of a recent dog attack or your own dog has bitten someone threatening legal action, it’s good to know your options – and how a personal injury attorney might help you exercise those options.
Since there’s no overriding federal law pertaining to dog bite cases, it’s up to individual states to decide how to handle such situations. Like many other states, Texas follows the “one-bite rule.” This means that if the dog has no prior history of attacks, its owner isn’t automatically liable for medical bills or pain and suffering. The reasoning is that if the dog has never demonstrated that it is a threat, the incident may have been nothing more than a freak occurrence, with the victim possibly even doing something to frighten and anger the animal. The plaintiff has to prove either that the dog has a history of biting and aggression (and that the owner knew about it), or that the owner failed to take reasonable precautions against unfortunate encounters with passing strangers. Examples might include:
- A notably aggressive dog with a history of biting who is not kept behind a fence at all times
- A dog who is allowed to roam the streets freely, instead of being walked on a leash or otherwise supervised by the owner
If you’re bringing a lawsuit in a dig bite cases, you should also know that you have a two-year limit to do so, after which the statute of limitations will run out.
No matter which side of the issue you’re on, a skilled dog attack lawyer may be able to help. Contact our law firm to learn more about your rights and get the representation you need!