by Scott Blumenshine
One of the most complex areas of personal injury deals with the law of municipalities and jurisdictions. We have extensive experience in representing individuals injured by the negligence of various municipalities and jurisdictions. The law differs greatly when it comes to being properly compensated in a personal injury claim because of the special protections municipalities have from lawsuits. It is crucial that you have the right legal representation so you can receive the monetary compensation you are entitled to.
It is common for governmental entities to have some immunity from lawsuits. This is so they can perform and function without the worry of constant litigation. However, there are and should be exceptions for certain types of misconduct. The Tort Immunity Act has granted municipalities with immunity, which can prevent recovery. These include:
There are certain circumstances in which even the Tort Immunity Act would not protect a municipality from liability. Often it is based on the conduct of either the municipality or its employees. If actions were done intentionally to cause harm or they possessed a complete indifference for the safety of others or personal property, then immunity would not apply. Proving intention or gross negligence can be difficult, but with a knowledgeable attorney you increase your chances substantially.
In Illinois, the majority of lawsuits are under the jurisdiction of the Court of Claims. The Court of Claims consists of seven judges that are appointed by the Governor. They hear cases regarding the Workers’ Compensation Act, state contracts, and tort cases against the state. In order to receive compensation you would first need an experienced attorney familiar with municipality liability. Your attorney would then direct you to the next steps dependent on the individual facts in your case.
The Court of Claims Act has a $100,000 damage limitation and therefore many Plaintiffs try to avoid application of the Court of Claims Act for this reason. It is not uncommon for personal injury claims to rise above $100,000 in damages from medical bills alone. There are exceptions to this $100,000 limit but they follow a rigid set of circumstances. This area of the law requires special knowledge and expertise by an attorney who truly understands municipalities and jurisdictions. Choosing the right attorney may mean the difference between full compensation and walking out empty handed.
It is very important that you talk with the right lawyers familiar with municipal liability. Proving negligence against a school district or a city is much different than proving negligence against the owner of an apartment who doesn’t have those various immunities and protections. Don’t put your case in the hands of legal novices. Call the Law Offices of
Meyer & Blumenshine for your free case evaluation. Dial (312) 263-1000 or fill out our quick online contact form.
Here are other great articles on our site about personal injuries and other related topics: