How to Prove a Claim Against the Government

As with all personal injury claims in Missouri, the injured party will have to prove the government agency’s negligence for the courts to give a judgment award. The plaintiff will need to show evidence that the government agency (or on-duty employee) owed the plaintiff a duty of care, breached this duty in some way (the act of negligence), and that the breach was the proximate, or main, cause of the injuries or property damage in question.

An example of a scenario when one might be able to bring a lawsuit against the Missouri government is if a pothole caused a single-vehicle auto accident. If the injured party can prove that the public body in charge of roadway maintenance reasonably should have known about the roadway defect yet did nothing to repair it, the courts will likely allow recovery. What is “reasonable” comes down to the question of whether a reasonable and prudent person or organization would have repaired the defect or prevented the accident in similar circumstances.

How to File a Claim Against the Government in Missouri

While the Missouri Tort Claims Act makes it possible to sue the government for certain acts of negligence, it doesn’t necessarily make the process easy. While a claimant has a five-year statute of limitations to file a regular claim, he or she typically only has 90 days to bring a formal claim against a government defendant. 

Spencer Eisenmenger
Helping Kansas City area medical malpractice, product liability, birth injury and personal injury clients.