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New York City Municipal Negligence Lawyer

Filing A Claim Against The City of New York and Other Public Entities

Many personal injuries occur on public property or involve public servants and government employees. Filing a municipal negligence claim against the City of New York and other municipal entities, including Public Authorities, is not a typical personal injury case. There are special rules that apply only to municipal negligence claims, including a shorter time limit to file a claim.

The attorney you choose must understand the special and complex statutory rules and deadlines that apply to these cases, or it could affect the amount of money you receive. Attorney Brian J. O’Connor has extensive knowledge of municipal liability law after starting his career as a government attorney with the City of New York’s Office of the Corporation Counsel.

Notice of Claim Requirement

Government entities have special requirements called “conditions precedent” that must be met in order to file a personal injury lawsuit in New York City. A “notice of claim” is a document that must be served on the City of New York or other public entity as early as 90 days after the accident.

The notice of claim is intended to provide the municipal entity with relevant details of the claim to afford it the opportunity to timely investigate and potentially settle the claim prior to starting the action. A Notice of Claim must include:

  • Name and address of the claimant
  • Name and address of the claimant’s attorney
  • The time, place and date of the occurrence
  • A detailed description of the manner in which the claim arose
  • A description of your injuries and the damages you intend to seek

Statute of Limitations for Actions Against a Public Entity

Generally, the statute of limitations to file a negligence claim in New York is three years. However, the time limit is much shorter against municipal corporations. Specifically, your time to bring a negligence claim against most New York public entities, including the State of New York, the City of New York, the MTA and the NYC Transit Authority, is limited to just one year and ninety days from the accident.

General Municipal Law 50(h)

After a Notice of Claim is filed within 90 days of the accident, the City of New York or other municipal entity, will schedule a hearing pursuant to General Municipal Law section 50(h). The hearing affords the public entity an opportunity to question the claimant about the accident and injuries as necessary to evaluate the claim. A claimant cannot file the lawsuit until the hearing is completed absent special circumstances.

How Do I Know If My Injuries Were Caused By Municipal Negligence?

Municipal liability covers a wide range of potential accidents and injuries. Listed below are the most common types of city and other municipal negligence cases we handle.

  • Subway station slip/trip and falls, including subway platforms, stairways and walkways
  • Child injuries at NYC public schools, including negligent supervision of students and negligent maintenance and repair of the premises
  • Uneven, cracked or poorly maintained City sidewalks
  • Broken traffic lights and missing stop signs
  • Defective roadway designs and improper maintenance
  • Failure to properly maintain city-owned buildings
  • Police misconduct

Examples of Agencies and Departments of the City of New York:

  • NYC Police Department (NYPD)
  • Department of Parks and Recreation
  • Fire Department of New York (FDNY)
  • Department of Transportation (DOT)
  • Department of Sanitation (DSNY)
  • Housing and Preservation (HPD)
  • Department of Corrections (DOC)
  • Department of Environmental Protection (DEP)

This list is not exhaustive, but a sample to give you an idea of the many types of City agencies and departments that may be responsible for a municipal liability claim. For claims against any of the above-named agencies and/or departments, the City of New York is the proper party to served.

Commonly Sued Public Authorities/Public Entities That Require a Notice of Claim

The following public entities are separate from the City of New York and require a claimant to serve a notice of claim on them within 90 days of the occurrence:

  • New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA)
  • New York City Transit Authority (NYCTA)
  • Staten Island Rapid Transit Authority (SIRTOA)
  • Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA)
  • New York City School Construction Authority (NYCSCA)
  • Manhattan and Bronx Surface Transit Operating Authority (MABSTOA)
  • New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation (NYHHC)
  • The Department of Education of The City of New York (DOE)
  • The State of New York and its Agencies

How Can A New York City Municipal Negligence Attorney Help Me?

Hiring an experienced NYC Municipal Liability Attorney will ensure that your case is properly investigated to identify the correct municipal entity. We will timely file your notice of claim, and prepare you for your 50(h) hearing. As a former NYC Assistant Corporation Counsel for the City of New York, attorney Brian J. O’Connor has extensive experience handling all types of serious injury cases involving municipal negligence, including cases involving the City of New York, the NYC Transit Authority and other public entities. We can help you get the compensation you deserve, including the following types of damages:

Economic Damages:

  • Lost wages (past and future)
  • Medical expenses (past and future)
  • Pension and other health benefits
  • Lost social security retirement benefits

Non-Economic Damages:

  • Pain and suffering (past and future)
  • Emotional distress
  • Loss of enjoyment of life
  • Los of companionship (spouse)

We retain experts in medicine, economics and life-care plans when necessary to establish all the damages you are entitled to, depending on the facts of your case.

Contact Us Today and Let Us Help You

Due to the complex nature of municipal negligence claims, it is important that you contact a NYC personal injury lawyer as soon as possible as you only have 90 days to file a claim or you may lose your case before it starts. Contact The O’Connor Law Firm today for a free case review.

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Take the First Step, I Look Forward to Helping You.