Monday, February 1, 2021

When Government Negligence Causes Financial Damages in Accidents

When people think about the cause of accidents and who to sue when accidents occur, the common target is other drivers or regular everyday citizens. 

There are, however, instances where agencies such as the government can be found negligent and can be responsible for financial damages in accidents.

This could be the federal, state or local government. Each state has its own laws governing the procedures for filing a lawsuit against government entities. These cases can often be more difficult and need special attention and care. 

Though they may be challenging, if you follow the proper protocols and steps, it is possible to recover damages from the government following an accident.

Case Examples

There are several different examples of cases where government negligence can come into play. These are scenarios that people do not often think of, though they are more common than most might believe. 

For example, if you get into an accident because you hit a major pothole in the road, or perhaps someone else hits the pothole, loses control, and hits you, those responsible for maintaining the road can be found negligent. They are negligent for not fixing the pothole. 

This can also be the case with other hazards that impede traffic on the road. In most situations, the party responsible for maintaining the roads and keeping them free of hazards is the government.

Another example might be any accidents that are caused by road construction issues. Perhaps the traffic was routed incorrectly, or cones or barriers were misplaced. There is a possibility that the government may be found negligent should an accident be caused by these types of issues.

Another, lesser thought of the situation may be if a government employee is driving while in the course and scope of their duties and causes an accident. In this case, the government may also be held liable.

Understanding the Process

Going about an accident or personal injury case when the government is involved can be complicated. These cases run differently and generally have different rules and deadlines than normal personal injury cases. 

Suing the government is no simple task. Let’s say you are suing the government in Utah for negligence that caused your accident. In a normal case, you would have up to four years after the date of the accident to file a lawsuit. 

Due to something called the Governmental Immunity Act of Utah, if your personal injury case is against the government, you only have one year to file your claim.

Get An Attorney

Because of the special circumstances and issues surrounding a lawsuit against the government, it may be advisable to find an attorney to help you through the process. 

With the dates and deadlines being tighter, having an attorney will take some of the burdens and stress off of you.

Further, and possibly most importantly, an attorney will be able to say with more certainty whether or not you have a case against the government. 

Because of how big of an undertaking it can be, you want to be certain you have the correct parties identified before filing a lawsuit. An attorney will be able to help you navigate through the process no matter which path you eventually choose.

It may seem like a daunting and almost impossible feat, but there are ways you can hold governmental agencies financially accountable for their negligence in an accident. 

Knowing where the government may be responsible, understanding the process, and potentially seeking help from an attorney are all ways to maneuver through cases like these with more ease.

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