If you are injured in an accident with a government truck, figuring out how to recover compensation from the government can be confusing and intimidating. Ohio strictly enforces deadlines to file a claim for an accident involving a government vehicle, so don’t waste time. Per section 2743.16 of the Ohio Revised Code, the state allows two years to file a claim regarding a personal injury. It’s never a good idea to delay. Talk to a lawyer before you contact the city or state.
Some people may be aware of the concept of sovereign immunity. Don’t make the mistake of thinking it’s impossible to sue the government because of this reason. There are cases where you may waive sovereign immunity depending on the circumstances of the case.
Waiving Sovereign Immunity after an Accident
Sovereign immunity is a legal concept that protects the government from liability in a civil case. When the government waives its right to this concept – as Ohio did in Ohio Revised Code 2743.01 et seq. and 2744 – it means you can sue the government responsible for your accident.
Under section 2744 of the Ohio Revised Code, political subdivisions (local governments) may be liable under certain circumstances, like if a government employee is “negligent in the operation of a motor vehicle while acting within the scope of their employment and authority.” There are exceptions for situations when a government truck can be held liable for your accident, though.
If one of the following was responding to an emergency when your accident occurred then you likely don’t have a claim against them:
- police truck;
- fire truck;
- medical emergency vehicle; or
- other emergency vehicle.
You should speak to a lawyer right away to find out if your accident falls within the parameters of these exceptions or if you may be eligible to pursue compensation from the government under Ohio law.
Proving Government Negligence
Of course, if you plan to file a claim against the government, you must establish that the government employer driving the truck was negligent and therefore responsible for the accident. This is similar to establishing liability of any other driver in a traffic accident case.
All drivers have a duty of care to others on the road, so you must establish the other driver violated that duty by acting negligently, like:
- weaving in and out of traffic;
- following too closely; and
- so on.
Of course, as mentioned, emergency vehicle drivers that engage in this driving behavior may not be considered negligent or liable for an accident. You must also establish that your injuries were the result of the accident and that you suffered damages as a result. Make sure you get legal help as you pursue your case against the government agency.
Where to Get Legal Help after a Truck Accident
So yes, even though it can be overwhelming to pursue a liability claim against the government, you may be able to recover damages after your wreck with an Ohio government truck. Call Bressman Law at 877-538-1116 or contact us online by filling out the form on the side of the page to set up a free consultation about your wreck with a government truck in Columbus.