Many Evansville citizens have grown up playing at the parks. Rarely does anyone imagine the possible dangers that may exist in these public areas. Even at the nicest parks, innocent people and children can be injured. It is important that you know the steps to take if your child is injured while playing at a public park.
If the park is a public area, you will likely be looking to file a claim against a government entity. Unfortunately, this tends to complicate things. Government entities are protected by immunity from lawsuits. While this complicates the process, it does not make it impossible. It generally just means that you will have to follow a meticulous procedure to get your case heard and the compensation you deserve.
Filing the Claim
There are a few important guidelines to stick to when filing a tort claim against the government so that your claim will not be dismissed before it is even seen.
- Timing: Typically, for the claim to be relevant, it must be filed within two years of the personal injury occurring. This is known as the statute of limitations. However, when filing a claim against the government, that deadline may be sooner, even just a few months from the date of the injury. Speak with a personal injury attorney to determine what the statute of limitations is on your claim.
- Facts: Be sure that your claim is completely fact-based rather than emotion-based. Be sure to include the list of damages you are claiming, the exact date and hour in which the incident occurred, as well as any other details that might give your claim merits during the investigation.
- Patience: As anxious as you will likely be to hear back, the agency is granted six months to respond, and it is not uncommon for them to take the entire six months. If during this time they conclude that your claim is valid, they will provide either part or all the compensation demanded without the need to go to court
- Appeal: If you do not receive the compensation you requested, you have six months from the date the decision is mailed to file a lawsuit. Once again, it is essential to file the lawsuit as soon as possible to avoid having your lawsuit dismissed entirely.
How to Prove Negligence
To have a solid claim, you will need to be able to prove that the personal injury was caused as a result of the government’s negligence. To hold the government responsible, the following must be true:
- The government owned the property you were injured on.
- The property contained a dangerous condition.
- The government was made aware of this situation prior to the incident.
- The government was given a reasonable amount of time to fix the condition between the time it was reported and the time the incident occurred.
- The injured party was in no way being negligent or reckless in a way that might have attributed to the injury.
Help from an Evansville Personal Injury Attorney
If your child was injured while at a public park due to the government’s negligence, you could be entitled to compensation. Call Hensley Legal Group today for a free consultation or contact us online.