The government is usually immune from injury lawsuits, including those related to car accidents caused by government employees. However, there are exceptions that may allow you to sue the government if one of its drivers crashes into you. Here are three examples of situations in which your car accident case against the government might succeed:
You Were Hit By a Grossly Negligent Driver
Many states have raised the threshold for government lawsuits from ordinary negligence to gross negligence. Therefore, in many cases, you will need to prove that the government driver wasn't just negligent, but that they were grossly negligent. Gross negligence is a conscious and voluntary action that the perpetrator knows or should have known could cause great harm to others. For example, a government employee who exceeds the speed limit in a crowded parking lot and knocks over a shopper is grossly negligent. The shopper has a legitimate claim against the government.
You Were Hit By an Emergency Car in a Non-Emergency Situation
Emergency vehicles such as ambulances and fire trucks are often given wide latitude because they are meant to save lives. That's why it would be difficult to mount an injury claim against a fire truck that hit you while it was responding to a fire in your neighborhood. In this case, the government may be immune even if the fire truck was speeding. However, you may sue the government if a speeding fire truck speeds and hits you when there is no emergency, for example, if it was being test driven or taken to a mechanic for repair.
There Was an Emergency, but the Driver Did Not Indicate It
Although government vehicles are given wide latitude in emergency situations, they are expected to alert the public that there is an emergency. These alerts usually come in the form of lights and sirens. That way, other road users can make way for the emergency vehicles and avoid injury. Therefore, an emergency vehicle that doesn't raise these alerts may lose some of the latitude usually afforded to them. For example, it would be difficult for an ambulance driver to claim immunity by reason of responding to an emergency if they had their lights and sirens off during an accident.
Therefore, never assume that you don't have a valid claim if you are injured in an accident and you realize that the other driver is a government employee in the line of duty. Consult a car accident attorney to evaluate your case and determine whether it's wise to proceed.Share
29 March 2017
Getting hurt while on the job can leave you in pain and without an income for some time afterward, but that doesn't mean that you have to start going to the food banks to make ends meet. Working with a lawyer to file a personal injury case (if the injury was due to neglect by another party) is a great way to get compensation you deserve for lost work, and to get your medical bills paid so you don't have to pay out of pocket for high deductibles. This website was built with love to provide you with up-to-date information you can use when working with a lawyer, filing paperwork, and dealing with all of the hoops and red tape of your personal injury case. Hopefully you can find the support you need right here.