The Cassidy Law Firm Blog

Wednesday, August 11, 2021

Can I Sue the Government for Injuries?

Accidents causing injuries can happen anywhere and be caused by anyone. This includes on government property and private property as well as by government employees and private individuals. While you may know that if you get injured due to the negligence of a private party you can seek damages to recover your losses, you may be unsure whether the same is possible when the government is responsible. Can you sue the government for injuries? Yes, in New Jersey, you can.

Can I Sue the Government for Injuries?

While you are able to seek compensation for injuries if you were injured due to the negligence of a government employee or agency, the process can be more complicated and far more nuanced than claims involving only private parties. In these cases, a claim will need to be filed in compliance with the detailed procedure set forth in the New Jersey Tort Claims Act. The New Jersey Tort Claims Act explicitly preserves the State of New Jersey’s common law right of sovereign immunity. This protects the government from being sued.

Section 59:2-2 of the New Jersey Tort Claims Act, however, creates explicit exceptions to the general rule that claims cannot be brought against the New Jersey government due to sovereign immunity protection. The exceptions grant those injured due to the negligence of a government employee or entity the ability to bring a claim against the government under certain circumstances. The major exception to the sovereign immunity rule is that government entities can be held liable for injuries a government employee causes within the scope of his employment just as could happen in the event the injuries were caused by a public person or entity.

The New Jersey Tort Claim Act has important limits on damages in place that should be noted. First of all, should you have insurance that covers your injuries, the amount you receive or could receive from your insurance coverage will be deducted from any damage award you receive from the state. Furthermore, pain and suffering damages will only be awarded when a person experiences a permanent loss of bodily function, permanent disfigurement, or dismemberment as well as having medical expenses exceeding $3,600. While a person may not meet the eligibility requirements for pain and suffering damages, he or she can still seek damages for other losses such as medical expenses and property damage.

Please be aware that there is a strict and short time limit in place for filing a claim against the state of New Jersey’s government. In fact, you have just 90 days from the date of the accident to file your claim. Should you fail to file within this time period, you will likely lose your right to bring your claim.

New Jersey Personal Injury Attorneys

Have you been injured due to government negligence? Do not delay in getting trusted legal counsel. The Cassidy Law Firm is here to begin assisting you in bringing your claim right away. Contact us today.

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