What Governmental Immunity Means to Your Pedestrian Injury Lawsuit

What Governmental Immunity Means for your Pedestrian Injury Lawsuit

When a pedestrian accident happens, there can be a lot of players involved. The pedestrian, the motorist, but what about the city? Sometimes poorly maintained sidewalks put pedestrians in harm’s way, causing serious accidents. But that doesn’t mean you will necessarily be able to sue the city for your injuries.

What is Governmental Immunity

Governmental immunity is a general rule that says, unless a law says otherwise, a person can’t sue the government, its agencies, or employees, for injuries caused by negligence in doing government jobs. For example, if you are injured because a police car runs into you in pursuit of another vehicle you may be able to sue your auto insurance provider, and possibly even the driver causing the chase, but you generally won’t be able to sue the police officer that hit you.

Highway & Sidewalk Exceptions

When the government becomes involved in pedestrian accidents it is often because the agency responsible for maintaining local streets and sidewalks isn’t doing its job. Broken pavement, missing accessibility ramps, and other obstacles can create dangers that put pedestrians at risk.

The good news is that there is an exception to governmental immunity that allows pedestrian injury lawsuits when cities or the state allow dangerous conditions for more than a reasonable time. When government agencies fail to respond to residents’ complaints about potholes, broken pavement, and large cracks in sidewalks, injured pedestrians can get compensated for the injuries caused by those conditions.

The bad news is that governmental immunity laws can make it hard to prove the government was negligent. To win your case you and your pedestrian accident attorneys will need to prove that the city had actual notice of the particular problem that caused your injury, or that it existed for at least 30 days at the time your accident happened. Because you never know when a particular accident will happen, and attorneys don’t usually get involved right away, it can be hard to meet this requirement.

Governmental immunity can make your pedestrian injury lawsuit more complicated and can cut off one source of recovery for your injuries. But that doesn’t mean you can’t be compensated for your injuries. Contact Christensen Law for a free consultation and find out if you have a claim against the government or anyone else for your pedestrian injuries.


Everyone at Christensen Law was extremely friendly and very easy to work with. Whenever I had a question, they took the time to talk with me and explained everything thoroughly. They were also very quick to return phone calls. I would definitely recommend Christensen Law to anyone in need of a personal injury lawyer.

I suffered Traumatic Brain Injury when struck by a vehicle while walking. My recovery was a long uphill battle; I had little energy to expend on daily routines and even LESS on caring for my home and life. I wondered how I could continue into the future with the difficulties I faced.

I handed the baton off to David and Sarah of Christensen Law. They resolved the unique challenges of my case while buffering me from the opposing side’s onslaught. The case concluded successfully and to my satisfaction with minimal effort on my part.

To ease the burden of the load you carry, make the decision on your legal team today. You’re in the right place – all you have to do now is make the call.

Overall a professional, great team. Everyone knew me and my case. When I left a message, I got a quick reply. Sarah made me feel comfortable going into a courtroom, where I never had been before. Both David and Sarah are very knowledgeable with legal issues. I trusted everyone and am a satisfied client.

V. Watkins

I never knew attorneys could be so accessible and kind. They fought for me all the way to the end. They had to take my case to trial and they won me a great settlement. Now I have a secure future.


HH, Davison

I was treated very nicely and professionally with a lot of consideration and compassion for my disabilities suffered in a horrible car accident. Mr. Christensen and Sarah Stempky made sure I understood what was happening with my case and that everything was pulled together.

LG, Stockbridge

As an accident victim I had to have my leg amputated and I was in bad shape overall. David Christensen was a light in that experience. I ended up with an entire home modification to accommodate my disabilities. It was a very stubborn insurance company but David wouldn’t take no for an answer.

CB, Milford

If I had questions or worries Dave would address them with me because he knows what he is doing. I think the world of him. I felt he went above and beyond to turn a really bad situation around. I have hope now where before I felt powerless and miniscule and that these big insurance companies were just going to railroad me.

DT, Jackson

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