The city of Seattle, like any other government entity, is full of people like you and me. Good people who are just trying to provide for their families. The thing is however, that those people sometimes make mistake which lead to accidents. When that is the case, and someone now has injuries caused by a city of Seattle worker, then the city of Seattle is responsible for covering the damages from the accident. In essence, if you or someone you love have injuries from someone working for the city, then you have the right to suing the city of Seattle.
Do I Need an Attorney to Sue The City of Seattle?
If you have injuries caused due to the negligence of someone else, then the short answer is yes. But “why” you ask? Well, here are five reasons we strongly believe you should hire an attorney.
1. Pursuing a claim to recover for your injuries is a complicated legal process.
This requires the expertise and experience of a highly trained Seattle personal injury attorney. There are many strategies and rules that take years for an attorney to learn and acquire. Therefore, you should always talk with an attorney before you try to handle your claim on your own. On average, people win 300% more for their settlements when they hire an experienced Seattle personal injury attorney. Even after our legal fees, you will receive a fuller and more fair compensation for your injuries!
2. When you have an attorney on your side, you can seek medical help without paying anything up front.
When a doctor knows that you have an attorney working on their case, it gives them peace of mind. If you do not have personal injury protection (PIP), then this information is especially important. Furthermore, this is also good to know if you don’t have health insurance and lack the finances to cover the costs of the medical treatments that you need.
3. An experienced lawyer is the only person that can evaluate the true value of your claim.
With decades of experience, an expert Seattle personal injury attorney knows what to look for when determining the value of your claim. Not only that, but a lawyer knows how to find for that value and understands the complicated legal system that stands between you and a fair settlement. Chances are however, that without an attorney, you will settle your case for much less than it is really worth.
4. The insurance company will never offer you what your case is worth.
This is one is very important. You need an attorney because the insurance adjusters will only offer you a fraction of the compensation you are entitled to. Because of this, only a competent, aggressive, expert personal injury attorney has the resources, the experience, and the ability to sue the insurance company to win you the fair and just settlement that you deserve. No matter how friendly they appear, even if they are your own insurance company, the insurance adjusters have one goal in mind. Their goal is to act with the best interests of their shareholders by saving money and paying as little as possible to people for their claims. With that said, having someone on your side who has your best interests in mind is your best bet.
5. With an attorney, you don’t have to do anything but get treatment for your injuries.
Lastly, you don’t have to worry about a thing! Having an experienced team of legal experts handling all the hassle, the paperwork, the headaches and arguments of dealing with insurance adjusters gives you peace of mind knowing your claim is in good hands. You can focus on getting better, let our professional Seattle personal injury attorneys at Premier Law Group focus on winning you a fair settlement.
Causes of Lawsuits Against The City of Seattle
There are many different types of situations in which a person can get injuries because of the negligence of the City of Seattle. A few common examples would be:
- Receiving injuries while you are at a Seattle public building or facility (airport, parks, docks, government building etc.)
- While pursuing a criminal in a high speed chase, if a Seattle Police Department (SPD) officer was the cause of an auto accident that left you with injuries.
- Someone who receives injuries in a pedestrian accident or an auto accident from a Seattle motor pool vehicle.
- A pedestrian who receives injuries because of a poorly designed and dangerous Seattle intersection.
- Due to the negligent actions of a Seattle city worker or official you receive injuries.
Liability and The City Of Seattle Government
In the city of Seattle, there are a number of different state and government agencies. Because of this, there are several companies that can be liable for causing you injuries. Of course, the company responsible will depend on different factors. Depending on where you are located, or which agency is involved, you may have a legitimate right to sue the city of Seattle. Here are a few of the government agencies you can file a claim against:
- Seattle Department of Transportation
- Seattle Police Department
- Port of Seattle
- Seattle Public Schools
- Public Utilities District of Seattle
- Seattle Animal Shelter
Suing City Governments in Washington
Suiting the city of Seattle, like suing any city government in Washington, follows RCW section 4.96.020. This law covers the state law from a broad stand point. That said however, each local city government has different rules for when someone puts forth a notice of the claim. This includes the city of Seattle. For most of these local governments, they provide written forms to submit a claim. Therefore, this is very similar to the ones used by the state of Washington.
Furthermore, any personal injury claim or property damage claim that is brought against a state government can also be brought against a local government official, a local official, or a government employee. If you are wanting to sue the City of Seattle, you can find a claim form and instructions on its website. Additionally, when if you are filing a claim, the City of Seattle will also accept the State of Washington’s tort claim form.
Notice of Claim Law
As with many other city governments, the City of Seattle has a notice of claim provisions in their statutes. This notice of of claim provision says that before a lawsuit is started, there must be a notice of claim filed within a certain amount of time. Typically, this period of time is around three to six months following the someone receiving injuries. In addition, you must file a claim within it's statute of limitations for that state. Each type of claim is different, therefore the statue of limitations is different for each claim type in Washington. You can find more information about the different claims statue of limitations in RCW 4.16.
A notice of claim will usually include the date of your injury, the nature of your accident, and any other supporting facts regarding your claim. A failure to file your claim within the statue of limitations may result in the dismissal of your claim. The City of Seattle’s claims process description is as follows:
Shortly after you file a claim in the City Clerk’s Office, they deliver it to the Claims Section. Then, the claim is assigned to an adjuster who will contact you with your assigned claim number. Also, they will give their contact information and then they will conduct an investigation which will include a written response from all of the departments that were involved. Lastly, the Claims Section will next evaluate and recommend a reasonable resolution for your claim which will be in line with one of these three options:
- They will pay you a sum of money
- They will transfer you to another party or entity who was responsible for causing your injuries. The name of this is to "Tender"
- Unfortunately, when there is no evidence of any negligence by the City of Seattle, they will then deny your claim.
Recent Lawsuits Against the City of Seattle
The family of a Seattle man recently won a $1.5 million dollar settlement for his wrongful death.
A 47 year old Seattle man was shot and killed by police after they mistakenly thought he was reaching for a handgun. The under cover officers stated that they saw him with a handgun holstered 30 minutes prior to the attempted arrest, but had lost sight of the Seattle man for as much time. When he re-emerged, the Seattle Police Department (SPD) officers moved on the Seattle man, telling him to raise his hands.
The SPD officers stated they thought he was reaching for his waste to grab the handgun they had seen 30 minutes prior, and shot the man to death. After an investigation however, the handgun had been left inside his vehicle nearby.
The Seattle man's family, though grieving his loss, was happy to know that the money would go towards helping his two young children. However, the money would never replace the loss of their father.
The Premier Law Group Difference
At Premier Law Group, there’s no long winded attorney jargon talking at you. We are straightforward and on your side. Furthermore, we want to have a conversation with you and see how we can help. We will even be up front and tell you if yours is a case that we aren’t best suited to help with and refer you to someone who is! If you’re needing help suing the City of Seattle, we will tell you your rights and options, and do whatever we can to give you answers and bring you justice!
The Premier Law Group difference is that we are real people helping real people. Because of all the first hand accounts of serious injuries and auto accidents we’ve seen in our clients lives, we are committed to being as authentic as possible, and getting YOU the best results possible. That’s why we have our Triple Guarantee along with our 5 non-negotiable goals.
- Always Serving Our Clients with Compassion and Excellence.
- Building Relationships Based on Trust
- Respectful and Regular Communication
- Bringing You Results You Deserve
- Making Legal Knowledge Accessible to Victims & Their Families
Call Premier Law Group Today for a FREE Consultation
Don’t wait to speak with an attorney! Our expert team of Seattle personal injury lawyers have experience suing the City of Seattle, and can help you too! Don’t let the insurance adjusters low ball you and pressure you into settling for less. We know the tactics insurance companies use, and have a proven track record against them. Don’t just take our word for it however, read what our clients say here!
Give us a call today at 206-285-1743! Or feel welcome to submit a webform by filing out the form to your right and we will contact you soon. We are more than happy to speak with you for a FREE consultation.