Filing a Claim Against the Government

People may have legal issues with another person or a company, but what happens if a person feels they were wronged by someone or some agency working on the government's behalf? For example, if someone trips and injures themselves on a public sidewalk, who do they hold responsible? State government? Federal government? These claims can be pursued by individuals in search of justice.

Your chances of succeeding in claims against the government are much greater if you have the experienced governmental claims attorneys of the Coye Law Firm working for you. Call one of our offices today to discuss your claim.


Federal Government Claim

The Federal Tort Claims Act was passed in 1948 and allows private parties or individuals to sue the United States for most torts. The law essentially considers the United States to be liable as an individual would be in a claim. For example, if the circumstances show that an individual would be held responsible for not keeping their property safe, then a claim against the government can be filed if they have committed the same type of negligence. It is best to discuss the event or issue with an attorney to see if your claim is worth pursuing and likely to get you the compensation you are seeking. The full chapter detailing court proceedings involving the United States is available here . 

The liability of the United States is outlined here . There are some circumstances that are explicitly outlined in which the United States government cannot be held liable. These include:
  • problems with the mail service
  • damages caused by quarantines
  • injuries or deaths resulting from combatant activities during time of war
  • claims arising in foreign countries
The full title of the act that outlines the exceptions can be accessed here . 

An example of a federal claim is the case of Fleming vs. United States. The plaintiff alleged that a federal inspector overlooked hazards that ended up costing eight coal miners their lives. More examples of these claims are found at the U.S. Department of Justice website.


Florida Government Claims

State governments have also waived a significant amount of their "sovereign immunity." The full statute on what claims can be filed against the government is available here . It is important to speak with a lawyer as soon as possible when considering one of these claims because timing is crucial. The proper notice must be given to the appropriate agency and in an acceptable form. Deviation from the standard procedure can hurt, delay, or prevent your claim's resolution.

Types of Claims

There are two types of claims that are brought against a government: torts and non-torts. A tort is defined as "a wrongful act...that results in injury to another's person, property, reputation, or the like, and for which the injured party is entitled to compensation." ( ) A non-tort usually deals with money, such as missed payments or back wages. Depending on your circumstance, you can file either of these claims at the federal or state level. 

On the federal level, tort claims are heard by the Supreme Court and non-tort claims are heard by the U.S. Court of Federal Claims . The attorneys of the Coye Law Firm are able to practice law in a variety of states, increasing their ability to help individuals and families.



There is a certain period of time that must be observed when filing a claim against the government. Civil actions on a federal level must be filed within six years of the issue's beginning. In Florida, this time is limited to four years. Tort claims must be presented to federal agencies in writing within two years of the event. If you don't file your claim within these deadlines, it can no longer be pursued. contact the Coye Law Firm to begin this process and protect your rights.

Filing a Claim

The Coye Law Firm can represent you in many areas of the law and in many parts of the country, including nationally. If you are considering a claim against the government, our governmental claims attorneys can represent you and your interests. 

If you want to pursue a claim against a large legal entity such as the government, you need experienced representation offered by the Coye Law Firm. Call our offices today to speak with a governmental claims lawyer.