Aulsbook Law Firm - September 2019



FROM DOG NO. 33 TO FAMILY MEMBER The Aulsbrook household is anything but ordinary. If you have been following this newsletter, you know how much my wife, Alison, and I love dogs. Last month, I shared stories about our three dogs, Cleo, Sugar, and Derby. This month, I want to talk a little more about Derby, the newest addition to the Aulsbrook household. Finding Derby

environment they were confined to, including human touch, receiving food on a regular basis, or hearing everyday sounds like the wind and the birds. These poor puppies existed for pure profit. Dog No. 33 was brought from Kentucky to Texas. Doodle Rock had us meet them at a storage unit and asked that we give the dog a name for tracking and veterinary records. As I mentioned last month, derby season was coming up at the time, and Alison loves horses, so it just made sense. We named her Derby on the spot.

Derby enjoys some park time.

Derby has quite the story. We’ve fostered many dogs to help get them ready to go to their “fur-ever” homes during the time we’ve worked with Doodle Rock Rescue — a nonprofit rescue dedicated to the rehabilitation and re-homing of doodles. You might ask why a shelter would dedicate itself to doodles, which includes goldendoodles, Labradoodles, and many other breeds mixed with poodles. These days, goldendoodles and Labradoodles are more popular than ever. The tragedy is that many people look at these dogs and all they see are dollar signs. So they decide to breed them to make a quick buck. Unfortunately, a lot of these dogs get tossed to the side when unethical breeders can no longer profit from the dogs, are unable to sell them, or simply move on to their next get-rich-quick scheme and leave the dogs behind to fend for themselves. There are a lot of reasons why doodles end up in rescues, but these are the big ones. Before we picked up Derby from Doodle Rock, she was simply known as Dog No. 33. We had heard that several rescue organizations, including Doodle Rock, had gone to a notorious puppy mill in Kentucky to rescue the dogs. Over 150 dogs were found living in chaos. They knew nothing about life outside of the

Derby was in rough shape due to living in the squalor she had known all her life. Worse, Derby had never known love; she only knew her crate. So, we cleaned her up and started the rehabilitation process. That is, until Derby made a run for it. All of the Kentucky rescues had been considered a flight risk. They were skittish and unpredictable, Derby included. She was on the streets for 48 hours after escaping, while we used multiple apps to connect with members of the community, including Nextdoor and PawBoost — two great resources for finding lost pets. It wasn’t long before residents in the area were contacting us saying they had spotted her. Curiously enough, we started to realize that Derby had become something of interest among folks in surrounding cities. We even heard from some folks that they were going to look for Derby once they got home from work. We eventually got word that she was on the streets weaving in and out of six lanes of traffic about 7 miles from our home in Euless! Random people who were commuting or getting home from work spotted Derby and did everything they could to keep her safe and out of the flow of traffic. A few people worked to trap Derby in their neighborhood, which only had one way in and out. Alison got the call that Derby had been caught and rushed to get her, taking Cleo along for the ride. When Alison and Cleo arrived at the neighborhood, Derby recognized Cleo immediately. She came up to the two of them as if she was relieved to be rescued once again. Ever since that day, we’ve been careful with Derby, making she sure never leaves our home. Back when we met Dog No. 33, I thought we were just going to foster this girl and get her ready for her "fur-ever" family. But Alison has fallen in love with Derby, so she is here to stay. Who knows where our next Derby adventure will take us.

-Matt Aulsbrook




When you are injured in an auto accident or any other kind of accident, you may consider pursuing a settlement without a lawyer. A lot of people ask themselves, “How hard can it really be?” Insurance companies love this. Why? Because they want you to “play the fool.” They are not in business to work with you, regardless of your injuries or expenses, like hospital bills and wages lost due to time away from work. They do not want to pay you the amount you need and deserve. It comes down to this: If an insurance company can get away with paying you as little as possible (preferably nothing), they will. This is why it’s so important to work with an attorney. On your own, it is possible to settle with insurance companies or the opposing party’s legal team. It may take a lot of time and countless phone calls, but it’s possible. It’s also possible that the insurance company will make you an offer on the first phone call (saving you a ton of time!). However, you will likely receive a much smaller settlement than you otherwise would. So small, in fact, that it is unlikely to cover all of your medical bills, lost wages, car repair, and any other bills you may have accrued after the accident. You’ll be left picking up the slack. Why It’s Important to Work With an Attorney After an Accident • How much do you know about the law and the full extent of your rights in an auto accident/injury situation? • Are you prepared to deal with all of the administrative duties, if necessary? • Are you in a position to take on the responsibility and stress that comes with working with an insurance company or the other party’s legal team? One mistake or missed deadline can cost you dearly. When all you want to do is take care of medical bills and lost wages and get your life back on track after an accident, consider your best legal option: an attorney. Here are some questions to keep in mind before independently pursuing a settlement.

Stop the Spread

School is back in session, but your child may be bringing home more than just random facts. Germs and bacteria that spread the common cold and flu are most prevalent in schools, but while these illnesses are strong, prevention is simple. Teach your kids how to prevent the spread of bacteria this season with these helpful tips. Prevent Colds and the Flu With Kid-Friendly Teaching Tools Kids learn more by watching what you do rather than listening to what you tell them to do. Get in the habit of covering your nose and mouth when you cough or sneeze, and then wash your hands. Make hand sanitizer and facial tissues readily available in your home and be sure to wash your hands before every meal. In addition, stick to healthy habits when you do feel sick. Drink fluids, get plenty of rest, and seek medical attention when it’s warranted. If your children see you taking care of yourself, they will be more likely to do the same for themselves in the future. Hand washing and nose blowing are about as fun as … well, just that. It’s no wonder children don’t want to take time out of their busy play schedules to combat nasty germs. Instead of making these important steps a chore, make basic hygiene fun. Use fun songs to teach the proper way to cover a sneeze, or do a science experiment to teach your children about how the germs spread through just one sneeze. (According to research, sneezes can travel anywhere from 19–26 feet at 100 miles per hour!) For crafty kids, let them decorate tissue boxes or hand sanitizer containers to give hygiene some flair. Soon enough, you’ll find them being smarter about their health. As kids pack into classrooms this fall, germs will fly faster than this past summer did. Prevent the spread of the common cold and flu by learning more tips from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention online at Ahh ... Ahh ... ACHOO! But Mommy Doesn’t Cover Her Nose!



Kids and Car Safety September is Baby Safety Month. Every state, including Texas, has a number of laws designed to protect with your local police department at no cost; just be sure to call ahead to ensure they can accommodate you. IS YOUR CHILD SEAT PROPERLY INSTALLED?

Children under the age of 2 should always be secured into a rear-facing child car seat, and whenever possible, the car seat should be mounted in the back seat. For children between 2 and 4, they can sit in a front-facing seat, but it should still be mounted in the back seat for maximum safety. Even in a minor accident or fender bender, deploying airbags can do serious harm to a child. For children ages 4 to 8, a booster seat is required. While it may not seem like a big deal, booster seats are remarkably effective. In the event of an accident, they reduce the chance of injury by 45%. The reason is a booster seat ensures they are sitting in a

infants and children in motor vehicles. When it comes to kids of any age, car safety is always paramount.

For example, children under the age of 8 (and less than 57 inches in height) must be secured in a child passenger safety seat system, such as a child car seat or booster seat. Texas law also requires that child safety seat systems be properly installed in accordance with manufacturer guidelines. Though these guidelines are generally the same or similar across manufacturers, you should always be sure to read the instructions during installation. Many communities in the Metroplex offer installation help. Throughout the year, community fire and police departments hold car seat installation events. You can even schedule car seat checks Texas-Sized Laughs!

more secure seat rather than just buckled into the normal car seat, which is designed with adults in mind. No matter the age of your child, from infancy onward, make sure they are safely and securely strapped in before you hit the gas.





What do you do when apples are in season but you don’t have time to make a pie? You opt for a crisp, of course.


Filling: •

Topping: •

5 lbs Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, and chopped 1/4 cup pecans, finely chopped

3/4 cup all-purpose flour 1/3 cup brown sugar 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon

• • • • •

• • • •

3 tbsp all-purpose flour

1/4 tsp salt

2 tbsp maple syrup 1 tbsp lemon juice

6 tbsp chilled butter, cut into pieces 1/4 cup pecans, coarsely chopped


1. Heat oven to 350 F. 2. In a mixing bowl, mix all filling ingredients together. Transfer to individual serving ramekins. 3. In a different mixing bowl, combine flour, sugar, cinnamon, and salt for the topping. Mix in butter until it forms lumps roughly the size of a pea, then stir in pecans. Sprinkle topping over filling. 4. Bake for 35–40 minutes, let stand for 10 minutes, and serve.







INSIDE Finding Derby 1

Teach Your Kids Flu Prevention Going It Alone After an Accident 2 Is Your Child Safe and Secure in the Car? Classic Apple Crisp 3 Honoring the Canines of 9/11 4

Cases We Handle: • Personal Injury • Wrongful Death

• Criminal Law/DWI • Business Law

The Four-Legged Heroes of Ground Zero

Honoring the Canines of 9/11

Search and rescue dogs and their handlers worked 12–16-hour days, searching for survivors and victims. They worked through dangerous conditions: Many dogs burned their paws as they dug through hot rubble, and both handlers and canines inhaled toxic dust. The task was both physically and mentally exhausting for the dogs during their shifts. Some dogs that found deceased victims refused to eat or interact with other animals. Search and rescue dogs became increasingly stressed and depressed the longer they searched without any results, mirroring their handlers. It wasn’t uncommon for handlers to stage mock “findings” of survivors to keep the dogs’ spirits up. Fortunately, the sacrifices these dogs and their handlers made did not go unnoticed. Many dog owners were inspired to earn their search and rescue certifications after the events of 9/11, promising to aid in future disasters and hopefully lessen the impact of such catastrophes. After 9/11, various researchers conducted many studies examining the effect this kind of work has on animals, both physically and mentally. Many of these studies wouldn’t be possible without the AKC Canine Health Foundation, so if you’re looking to give back this September, visit them at their website to see how you can help:

In the immediate aftermath of 9/11, thousands of New Yorkers took to the streets to clear rubble, offer supplies, and search for survivors. It was a powerful act of resilience in a deeply trying time, and while most of the individuals helping with the disaster stood on two feet, more than 300 canines also answered the call to service. Dogs of all breeds and backgrounds, including search and rescue dogs, police dogs, service dogs, and therapy dogs, were brought in to help find and care for survivors in the wake of the destruction. They worked tirelessly alongside rescue crews as they searched through the debris.



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