You Can Fight City Hall: Municipal Liability
When someone injures you, you have every right to pursue the wrongdoer for compensation. But what if the person or entity responsible is actually municipal government? The good news is that you can indeed fight city hall. The Federal government, The State of New York, municipalities, and public authorities are liable to people injured in accidents on public property or in public facilities due to negligence. These municipal liability cases often involve the city, town, or village in which you live, work, or visit.
However, be aware that a municipal liability suit is not like suing a private defendant. There are prerequisites you must meet before you are allowed to file a lawsuit. You cannot just file your lawsuit directly in court. And once you are in court, the municipality has defenses that are not available to private individuals or corporations.
Notice of Claim
If you are injured in an accident, fired by a local agency, or the victim of police brutality, you may want to file a lawsuit. However, if you do not act quickly, your rights may be extinguished before you have a chance to decide if you want to proceed. In order to have the opportunity to file a lawsuit, you must formally file a Notice of Claim against the city. A Notice of Claim must be submitted under oath. It must identify the name of the parties involved, describe the nature of the injuries and the damages sought, and properly identify the municipal agency responsible.
Generally, you only have 90 days to file your Notice of Claim with the appropriate agency. The agency will then have the right to take your deposition or require you to be examined by a physician. Remember, all of these steps must be taken before you file a formal lawsuit in court. This is a tricky process because anything you say during this stage can come back to haunt you during a lawsuit. Wrongful death cases have additional complex requirements. That’s why you should never try to file a Notice of Claim without the assistance of an attorney.
Statute of Limitations
A statute of limitations is the law that gives you a certain amount of time to file a lawsuit. If you do not bring your lawsuit within the statute of limitations, then you lose the right to pursue your case. The statute of limitations is different than the Notice of Claim. After you file the Notice of Claim, then the clock begins to run on the statute of limitations. The time limits on certain types of cases can range from one year to six years. Be sure to speak with an experienced New York lawyer, like Pulvers, Pulvers &Thompson, to identify what kind of case you have and which statute of limitations applies.
Common Lawsuits Against New York City
New York and all the municipalities must abide by the rights enumerated by the State and U.S. Constitutions. There are also specific civil rights laws which apply as well. There are several kinds of cases which are usually brought to hold the municipality responsible for injuries.
If someone is injured during an accident caused by the bus or subway, then arguably the New York Transit Authority is responsible. If someone is terminated because of his or her sex, race, religion, sexual orientation or political affiliation, then the person can sue the agency where he or she was employed. If you have been subjected to police misconduct, retaliation, or unnecessary use of force, then you can sue New York City. You must still file a Notice of Claim and satisfy the statute of limitations to have a valid lawsuit.
In the event the case is appropriate for settlement, there are different kinds of damage awards available, including non-monetary remedies. If you think you have a claim against New York City, it is imperative that you contact municipal liability experts to handle the case.
New York Municipal Liability Injury Lawyer
The attorneys of Pulvers, Pulvers & Thompson, LLP will work diligently to obtain the maximum compensation available for your injury. Our lawyers understand the urgency of the matter and will move forward quickly and professionally. We will help make a difficult situation more bearable by helping you receive compensation and justice for your injuries.
Pulvers, Pulvers & Thompson, LLP serves individuals and families for personal injuries in municipal locations throughout Manhattan, Brooklyn, Bronx, Queens, Staten Island, Westchester, Nassau, and Suffolk Counties. If someone you care about was injured in a municipal location, we would like to help.