Filing an Injury Claim Against the Government to Recoup Losses

Posted on behalf of Peter T. Nicholl in Personal Injury Published on May 18, 2020 and updated on March 6, 2022.

injury claim against the governmentIf you are injured in an accident or incident due to someone else’s negligence, you generally have the legal right to pursue compensation against the at-fault party. This could also be true if a government entity or employee is involved, but the process is a lot more difficult and may involve complex rules.

Our Maryland personal injury lawyers at The Law Offices of Peter T. Nicholl discuss these claims in length and explain the steps needed to take legal action. An initial consultation is 100 percent  free.

Maryland Tort Claims Act

The Maryland Tort Claims Act (MTCA) allows victims to sue a government entity or employee for their injuries. Tort claims often require personal injury victims to file these claims quickly. Generally, you must file a formal and written claim within one year from the date of your injury to the State treasurer or a designee of the treasurer. You are required to follow all normal rules for taking legal action in addition to the rules contained in the Act. The rules also limit the amount of losses you may be able to recoup.

Filing a Claim Against the State or its Employees

To sue the State of Maryland or its State employees for causing your injury under the MTCA, certain steps must be taken. This includes the following:

  • Mail, fax or deliver the letter to the State treasurer – You are required to say why you think that the State or its employee acted negligently and why you think the State is liable for your injury. The claim letter needs to include the name and address of each person involved, an account of how the injury happened, where it took place and when, details of your injury and specific damages suffered, and contact details from you and your lawyer if being represented.
  • Failure to file the claim letter within one year – You may still be able to file a lawsuit, but the State may argue that the letter was not filed on time and ask the court to dismiss the case. The court will make a decision as to whether or not you are able to take legal action.
  • The State will investigate the claim after letter is filed – This procedure is similar to what an insurance adjuster would do and may take some time to obtain a response.
  • The complaint, summons and any other documentation must be served – This is required once a lawsuit is filed in accordance with Maryland rules, even if you sent the claim letter.
  • Once a lawsuit is won against the State – There is a limit on the amount that the State is able to pay you for your injury. Legally, the state cannot be held responsible to any individual for over $400,000 for an injury that arises from a single accident or incident.

Can I Sue a State Employee Personally?

Being able to sue a State employee personally is rare, but there are exceptions that exist. Legal action can be taken against State employees for actions that are taken outside of their work for the State. Legal action can also be taken if those actions took place as part of the State employee’s work, if he or she acted with malice or gross negligence. Proving these specific acts, however, can be a challenging task without the help of an experienced lawyer.

Call Peter T. Nicholl to Get Started on Your Claim

Our licensed lawyers know what it takes to file injury claims against government entities or employees and are prepared to discuss these types of claims in greater detail during a free legal consultation. If you have a valid claim, there is only so much time to file and we want to make sure you do not forfeit your right to pursue compensation for your injury.

Our services are provided on a contingency fee basis, which means no fees up front unless you obtain a recovery. We are available to take your call 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Get started by contacting our firm at 410-244-7005.