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My 12 year old son got bit by our neibhours dog which resulted in 3-4 stiches and several thousands of medical bills.

Sugar Land, TX |

The insurance company of the owner of the dog has offered me $25 K in liability and $500 towards medical expense. Is this a reasonable offer or should I fight for more? Further is any of this payment taxable to me?

Attorney Answers 8


  1. I have handled a number of dog bite cases throughout the years. The value of a case of this nature would depend on the location of the scar and the severity of the scar. Typically, an adjuster will pay more if the victim is a girl and the scarring is on the face. Before you accept the offer, you should present the documentation and photos to a local attorney to get his opinion on the value of the case. In deciding whether or not to hire an attorney, you should factor in the attorney fees and costs if the case was accepted for representation versus what you are being offered at this point in time. Photographs and the general appearance of the scar will be major factors in putting a value to the case along with the medical records and bills. Good luck.


  2. This is your sons injury claim - but you are responsible for his medical bills since he is a minor - so its a mixture. How can you pay thousands of dollars in medical expenses with $500? Your question probably needs further discussion and analysis. You should contact a personal injury attorney ASAP just for a FREE initial consultation.

    All responses on this site by this attorney are considered practical & general and does not constitute absolute or final legal advice. It is always best to consult a lawyer in your area on your exact case/claim. Each state has different laws, statutes of limitations and regulations. This lawyer is only licensed in the State of Texas. If this information has been helpful, please indicate below. I hope my information is helpful to you. If you think this post was a good answer, please click the "Good Answer" button below and/or designate my answer as the "BEST ANSWER". This is a general response to a question for basic information and is not legal advice. Legal advice can only be given when all of the facts of your situation are discussed with a lawyer, which we have not done.. If you reside outside the State of Texas please understand that the laws may be different from the laws that I may cite in a my comment. This comment is not to be construed as legal advice to your particular situation because there are many factors that influence legal counseling- this is simply a comment. Response to an email does not create an attorney-client relationship between you and the Law Offices of GREGG S. HARRISON, PLLC, nor any of its attorneys. If you send us an e-mail, or call us, and we do not already represent you, neither your e-mail inquiry nor telephone call will create an attorney-client relationship. E-mails cannot necessarily be treated as privileged or confidential. Only entering into a written legal services contract with the Law Office of GREGG S. HARRISON PLLC. will create an attorney-client relationship. There is no substitute for one-on-one legal advice and you are urged to meet with an attorney and discuss your case, personally, with an attorney in the state in which you reside or your case occurred. Thank you. GREGG HARRISON. Visit our website at www.greggharrison.com or call 832-797-7600 to discuss your legal issue; We represent injured persons who have been involved in motor vehicle collisions, 18-wheeler/truck wrecks and motorcycle accidents; all types of general negligence and catastrophic injury claims.


  3. It's hard to tell whether this is a fair settlement or not. There are numerous factors that go into the value of any personal injury case. You would find it beneficial to discuss this with a lawyer who provides a free initial consultation. If you would like, I would be glad to discuss this matter with you.

    As for your tax question, I would direct that to a tax professional. But the last time I researched that issue, the proceeds from a personal injury claim are not taxable income.


  4. You should obtain needed medical care and treatment immediately and follow the doctor's advice. Do not give any statement to the adverse party or insurance company nor grant them access to any medical records. Photograph the injuries and the damage done to any property. Contact a personal injury attorney in your area as soon as possible so that you can protect your rights. You may also find it helpful to review the Legal Guides I have published on Avvo.com dealing with many of the issues you are now facing.

    Legal Disclaimer:

    If this information has been helpful, please indicate below.

    Mr. Lundeen is licensed to practice law in Florida and Vermont. The response herein is not legal advice and does not create an attorney/client relationship. The response is in the form of legal education and is intended to provide general information about the matter within the question. Oftentimes the question does not include significant and important facts and timelines that, if known, could significantly change the reply and make it unsuitable. Mr. Lundeen strongly advises the questioner to confer with an attorney in your state in order to ensure proper advice is received.


  5. You need to talk to a local personal injury attorney because this is your son’s claim, not yours. Since he is a minor you are not only responsible for his medical expenses, but you also responsible (in some cases) for repaying your health insurance company.

    Do not sign anything before talking with an attorney.

    Good luck.

    DISCLAIMER: David J. McCormick is licensed to practice law in the State of Wisconsin and this answer is being provided for informational purposes only because the laws of your jurisdiction may differ. This answer based on general legal principles and is not intended for the purpose of providing specific legal advice or opinions. Under no circumstances does this answer constitute the establishment of an attorney-client relationship.


  6. Whether your son can recover anything depends on whether the neigbor should have known the dog would bite someone. How much you should get depends on whether there is perminant scaring or any other damage. If the insurer is offering 25 K, then they must believe the claim has merit. If a lawyer takes the case on the typical 1/3, then 25K to your son is the same as 37.5K with a lawyer. You need to talk to a lawyer and have the damages evaluated to see if they are probably worth more than 37.5K. If not, you are better off to settle now.

    This is not legal advice. You should always discuss the specifics of your issue in person with an attorney. Be aware that there are time limits on all claims that depend on the kind of claim, so do not delay in seeking an attorney.


  7. "The insurance company of the owner of the dog has offered me $25 K in liability and $500 towards medical expense."

    Those may be the policy limits, which is the full amount the insurer could be required to pay. As you have already been told, you need to discuss this case with a qualified personal injury attorney.

    Your state and county bar associations can provide you with referrals.

    The foregoing is for general information purposes and does not establish an attorney-client relationship.


  8. It depends on whether the injury has healed; are their injuries that are permanent; is there scarring; where is scarring; is victim boy or girl? Many factors involved. We have handled quite a few cases like this that have settled for around $5,000 - $300,000. Please call for a free telephone consultation. Visit my website on Avvo.

    If this information has been helpful, please indicate below. I hope my information is helpful to you. If you think this post was a good answer, please click the "Good Answer" button below and/or designate my answer as the "BEST ANSWER". Thanks. This is a general response to a question for basic information and is not legal advice. Legal advice can only be given when all of the facts of your situation are discussed with a lawyer, which we have not done.. If you reside outside the State of Texas please understand that the laws may be different from the laws that I may cite in a my comment. This comment is not to be construed as legal advice to your particular situation because there are many factors that influence legal counseling- this is simply a comment. Response to an email does not create an attorney-client relationship between you and the Law Offices of Kevin R. Madison, P.C., nor any of its attorneys. If you send us an e-mail, or call us, and we do not already represent you, neither your e-mail inquiry nor telephone call will create an attorney-client relationship. E-mails cannot necessarily be treated as privileged or confidential. Only entering into a written legal services contract with the Law Offices of Kevin R. Madison, P.C. will create an attorney-client relationship. There is no substitute for one-on-one legal advice and you are urged to meet with an attorney and discuss your case, personally, with an attorney in the state in which you reside or your case occurred. Thank you. Kevin R. Madison. Visit our website at www.kevinmadison.com and www.texassexualharassmentattorney.com. Kevin Madison, Austin, Texas- representing injured persons in motor vehicle collision, truck and motorcucle accidents and representing victims of sexual harassment, sexual assault, sexual abuse, physical assaults, and representing victims of sexual exploitation committed by doctors, therapists, psychologists, psychiatrists, clergy, counselors, priests, and rabbis. Visit our sexual harassment/sexual exploitation blog at http://texassexualharassmentattorney.com/blog/

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