When an individual suffers an injury due to the negligence or wrongdoing of a municipality or its employees, any personal injury claim they may have falls under the category of municipal liability. Claims against municipalities proceed differently in key ways from claims against private individuals or businesses. With roots in the Hudson Valley that stretch back over 150 years, Rusk, Wadlin, Heppner & Martuscello, LLP is a fixture in the Ulster County communities where we practice. We understand local laws and customs, and we know that when a municipal claim is warranted, justice demands following through with diligence and skill. If you were injured in an auto accident with a government vehicle, a slip and fall on public property, or other incident where a Hudson Valley governmental entity or employee is responsible, contact our office to speak with a skilled and knowledgeable Kingston municipal liability lawyer.
What is Municipal Liability?
Municipal liability refers to situations where a city, town, or other local government entity is held legally responsible for injuries or damages caused due to its negligence or the wrongful actions of its employees. This could include injuries from poorly maintained public property, accidents involving government vehicles, or harm due to negligent actions of government employees.
Claims against municipalities add extra layers of complexity for accident victims seeking compensation for their injuries. Key considerations in municipal liability cases include:
- Sovereign Immunity: Historically, government entities were protected from lawsuits by sovereign immunity. However, laws have evolved, allowing for legal action against municipalities in certain circumstances. An understanding of the applicable governmental tort claims statute is essential.
- Notice of Claim: In New York, individuals must file a Notice of Claim within 90 days of the incident. This is a critical step in pursuing a municipal liability case. Attorneys who are unfamiliar with cases involving municipalities might think they have the standard three-year statute of limitations to file a lawsuit, ignoring a key provision that dooms their case.
- Standard of Proof: Demonstrating a municipality’s liability involves showing negligence or wrongful action, a challenging task requiring skilled legal expertise in gathering relevant facts and analyzing applicable law.
Common types of municipal liability claims include:
- Property-Related Injuries: Slip and fall accidents or other injuries on poorly maintained municipal property.
- Vehicle Accidents: Incidents involving municipal vehicles, including public transportation.
- Negligent Actions of Municipal Employees: Cases where a government employee’s negligence causes harm.
How Rusk, Wadlin, Heppner & Martuscello, LLP Can Help
Our team at Rusk, Wadlin, Heppner & Martuscello, LLP, understands the unique challenges of municipal liability cases in Hudson Valley. With our extensive experience and deep knowledge of New York’s legal landscape, we offer a thorough case evaluation at the outset, assessing the specifics of your case to determine the viability of a municipal liability claim. Where a viable claim exists, our attorneys are adept at guiding clients through the complexities of filing a Notice of Claim and meeting all procedural requirements. We work diligently in collecting and presenting compelling evidence to establish the municipality’s liability. When it comes time to resolve the case, our team is prepared to skillfully negotiate with municipal entities and, if necessary, pursue litigation to secure fair compensation.
Trust Rusk, Wadlin, Heppner & Martuscello, LLP for Your Hudson Valley Municipal Liability Claim
If you or a loved one has suffered due to the negligence of a municipal entity in Hudson Valley, Rusk, Wadlin, Heppner & Martuscello, LLP is here to help. Our commitment to excellence and our deep understanding of municipal liability laws in New York make us a trusted choice for those seeking justice and compensation. Contact us today for a free consultation at our Kingston or Marlboro offices, and let us guide you through your municipal liability claim with expertise and compassion. Call 845-331-4100 in Kingston or 845-236-4411 in Marlboro, or call 800-566-4101 toll-free throughout the Hudson Valley.