Suing a government agency in the United States can be an intimidating prospect, but if you feel like you've been wronged, it may be a necessary one. The process may take some time and is fairly complicated, but you will need to follow a number of steps if you want to have success. There are also a number of limitations you will have to contend with before you can sue a government. Take the time to familiarize yourself with the process before you get started.
Contact your lawyer before your take any action. If you don't have a lawyer, look in a local business directory such as the Yellow Pages. Although a lawyer is not necessary for the preliminary steps, they can help advise you and guide you in the right direction.
Visit your local county website or their offices in person. Obtain a copy of the damages claim form. Before you can sue a government agency, you must first attempt to file a claim.
Fill out the form with all of the relevant information including personal information, the nature of the damages and the amount of compensation you expect. You must file this form within six months of your accident or loss.
File your claim in person or by mail. Wait for a letter announcing whether your claim has been accepted or rejected.
Plan to file a lawsuit if your claim was rejected or if you have not heard from the office within 45 days. Fill out a plaintiff's claim sheet available online or in person from your local county office.
Find a small claims court near you and file the document along with necessary filing fee. If you are unable to afford the filing fee, you may submit a waiver, which is also available at your county office.
Prepare with your lawyer for the trial. Remember to bring your copy of the plaintiff's claim to the court on the date given to you when you filed your claim.
James Stuart began his professional writing career in 2010. He traveled through Asia, Europe, and North America, and has recently returned from Japan, where he worked as a freelance editor for several English language publications. He looks forward to using his travel experience in his writing. Stuart holds a Bachelor of Arts in English and philosophy from the University of Toronto.