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Tampa Auto Accident Lawyers > Tampa Government Property Injury Lawyer

Tampa Government Property Injury Lawyer

In Florida, private property owners may be held civilly liable when a dangerous condition on their property leads to an accident that injures an invited guest or member of the public. But what about public property? If someone is injured while visiting a government building or on a publicly owned sidewalk, can they actually sue the state or city to collect damages?

In fact, such claims are allowed under federal and state law. The catch is that there are special rules for government property injury cases that do not apply to personal injury lawsuits against private parties. A qualified Tampa government property injury lawyer can advise you further. Anderson & Anderson has over 35 years of experience representing clients who have been injured through the negligence of a government agency or employee. We can review your accident and advise you on the best course of action for seeking compensation for your medical bills and other injuries and losses.

How Government Tort Claims Work in Florida

Normally, you are not allowed to sue the government without its consent. Both Congress and the Florida legislature have waived this “sovereign immunity,” however, to permit tort (personal injury) claims against the federal and state government, respectively, or any of its subdivisions. This means that if you are injured in an accident that occurs on government property, you may have the right to file a personal injury claim and demand compensation.

Unlike a typical personal injury lawsuit, however, you first need to file an administrative claim with the government in question. For example, if your injury occurred on property owned by the State of Florida, you must file a written claim with the Florida Division of Risk Management by a specified deadline, usually within 3 years of the accident. (In cases involving wrongful death, the deadline is just 2 years.) The State then has 180 days to conduct its own investigation into your claim.

Following the investigation, the government will either accept or deny your claim. If your claim is denied–or you reject the amount offered in settlement–you then have the right to file a personal injury lawsuit. It is important to emphasize, however, that Florida law caps the amount of damages you can actually receive. The Florida Tort Claims Act limits recovery against a state or local government agency to $200,000 per person or $300,000 per accident involving multiple victims. If your claim involves two or more government agencies, your total compensation is limited to $300,000. And unlike personal injury claims against private defendants, there is no option to seek punitive damages against the state.

Contact Anderson & Anderson Today

There are many other legal issues that frequently arise in accidents on government property, such as establishing which agency or subdivision is actually responsible for the property in question. This is why it is important to work with an experienced Tampa government property injury lawyer from the outset of your claim. Call Anderson & Anderson today at 813-251-0072 or contact us online to schedule an initial consultation.

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