By Pendergast Law on November 21, 2016
Suffering an accident can be a traumatic event no matter what the circumstances, forcing you to deal with insurance claims, police reports, and, if the accident is severe enough, hospital visits and rehabilitation. But the level of complexity increases if the accident involved a government vehicle and driver.
Government vehicles cover a wide variety of functions from the local to federal levels. The list includes ambulances, police vehicles, fire trucks, municipal buses, school buses, snowplows, construction vehicles, street cleaning vehicles, mail delivery vans, and utility vehicles. In fact, any vehicle being driven by a government employee in an official capacity should be considered a government vehicle.
Even if they are not clearly marked, it is the responsibility of a government employee to identify that the vehicle was being used on official business in the event of an accident.
If you have been involved in an accident with a government vehicle, you should report it to the proper office as soon as possible. Many federal vehicles are managed by the General Services Administration. For Washington State vehicles, you can contact Enterprise Services.Â No matter what type of vehicle, there will be a management office in charge of dealing with accidents, and while these drivers will normally be insured, it may be difficult to receive full compensation in a prompt manner.
If the driver of the government vehicle involved in your crash was operating it in an official capacity, then the government agency can be held liable for your accident. However, if the driver was operating the vehicle outside of work, whether legally or illegally, this will complicate your claim. The government insurance agency may try to deny liability, meaning the driver might be uninsured or unable to compensate you for the damages and injuries they caused.
It is important that if you or a loved one has been injured in an accident involving a Seattle government vehicle that you fully understand everything that you are entitled to, and that you have an experienced team representing you.
To learn more about what your rights are in a case like this, contact Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S. We will help to insure that you are not intimidated by the tactics used by government agencies to avoid full compensation. We’ll leverage our years of experience dealing with Washington State government vehicle accidents to help you receive everything you deserve according to the law. Call 888-539-9211 today to schedule a free consultation.