Connecticut residents might be surprised how often they interact with the government of this state or with a local government, including the community governments of Hamden or New Haven.
For example, private residents may share the road with government vehicles or public employees who are traveling for business in their private cars. People may also frequently pass through or have business on public property, like a park or a public building.
It is not a surprise that some people every year are the victims accidents in which a state or local government may be liable.
Government employees may be involved in a motor vehicle collision, for example, or a person may slip and fall while on public property.
In many ways, a person would treat a claim against the government as it would any other personal injury claim. The victim would have to prove that the government acted negligently and that the negligence caused the victim’s injuries.
To file a legal claim against the government, extra steps may be required
Because it is legally what can be called a sovereign entity, the State of Connecticut must give permission for people to sue it for damages. Like other states, Connecticut law does allow private citizens to file suits after an injury.
However, there is a special process for doing so. Not following the process correctly, or missing an important deadline, can mean that a victim’s claim against the State of Connecticut will go unpaid even if it was otherwise a meritorious claim.
Local governments do not have the same sovereign immunity as does the State, but there are some legal details about which victims will want to be aware before going forward with a claim against a city or other local government body.
Victims of an injury which involves a government actor will want to be sure they understand their legal options.