Government Immunity Non-Emergency
Government Immunity for Non-Emergency
When police officers, firefighters, ambulance drivers, and other emergency health providers respond to accidents, surrounding vehicles are required by law to give them adequate space. Although emergency responders are given protection under the law, it is still necessary for them to practice appropriate safety precautions in order to prevent an additional accident.
The Importance of Proper Precautions During Motorcycle Accidents
It is particularly crucial for emergency responders to take extra precaution when the accident involves a motorcycle. Because of their smaller size and the fact that riders are almost completely exposed and vulnerable, motorcyclists experience higher rates of severe injuries sustained during accidents. If a cyclist sustains an injury or is killed by a government response vehicle in an emergency situation, it can be especially tricky to obtain compensation due to the complicated laws surrounding government vehicles.
Government Immunity: What Does it Mean?
If your or a loved one has experienced an injury due to a government vehicle responding to an emergency, consider consulting an experienced attorney to review your situation. In general, entities such as cities, towns, states, counties, school districts, and the federal government are protected against lawsuits. This protection is provided under a doctrine referred to as “government immunity” or “sovereign immunity". In certain cases, however, an exception to government immunity may be possible.
Possible Exceptions to Government Immunity
A common reason for this exception happens when the traffic accident is a result of a government employee driving a government vehicle. In this case, the government entity can face a potential lawsuit if the traffic accident involved an official government vehicle driven by a government employee found to be at fault.
Required Safety Procedures for Emergency Response Vehicles
As explained earlier, even though vehicles involved in emergency situations are required by law to be given appropriate space, they are still subject to proper safety precautions and procedures. An example of a required safety procedure is the requirement for government vehicles to keep their lights and sirens on at all times during emergency situations. If you, a friend, or a member of your family were injured by an emergency vehicle without its lights and sirens operating during an accident, you may be entitled to compensation.
Government Immunity Exceptions: Steps for Filing a Claim
In order to file a claim against a government entity, a notice must be filed within 180 days of the incident. If this deadline passes, your right to collect compensation will likely be forfeited. Additionally, it is common for government entities to require a specific cost for any claims filed. It is crucial to precisely calculate the exact dollar amount surrounding vehicle damage and injuries. If your claim is denied by the government entity, you may be required to file suit. A lawsuit involves a 1-year statute of limitations.