Government Tort Lawyers in Albuquerque, NM

When you or someone you love suffers an injury or illness due to someone else’s negligence, you may be able to pursue a personal injury claim against them. However, when the liable party in your case is a government agency or official, your case may become more complicated.


In the past, these public officials and government agencies may have been protected from civil action due to qualified immunity laws.

Through the New Mexico Tort Claims Act, you may be able to pursue legal action against a government agency or official responsible for causing your injuries, depending on the specific details of your case. An experienced government tort lawyer in Albuquerque, NM could help you get the most out of your claim.

Contact Harrison & Hart, LLC for a free consultation to find out how to start working on your case.

What are Torts?

A tort claim is a civil lawsuit you could file when someone else is responsible for causing your injury or illness. Generally, the liable party must have acted with negligence or intent for you to have grounds for a tort claim.

Torts are commonly referred to as personal injury or wrongful death lawsuits. When another party is at fault for your damages, they should be compelled to compensate you accordingly.

What is Sovereign Immunity?

However, before the New Mexico Tort Claims Act was passed, government agencies and officials were protected from being sued under what was referred to as sovereign immunity. You may have been prohibited from filing a lawsuit against these individuals and entities.

You Have a Deadline to File

It is important to note that if you are pursuing a tort claim, you must do so before the deadline. In New Mexico government tort claims, you will only have a maximum of 90 days for a personal injury claim and six months in a wrongful death claim to get your lawsuit filed before the deadline runs out.

The Tort Claims Act

Under the New Mexico Tort Claims Act Section 41-4-4, there are exceptions to sovereign immunity, as long as specific elements have been met. These elements include:

  • The defendant is responsible for committing wrongdoing or a tort action against the injury victim
  • The defendant is or was a public employee or government agency acting within the scope of their job responsibilities
  • The defendant decided or behaved in a way that violated the injured victim’s rights under the U.S. Constitution

While the New Mexico sovereign immunity doctrine was not repealed, the New Mexico Tort Claims Act now provides exceptions to sovereign immunity, allowing injury victims to fully hold those responsible for their injuries accountable to the law.

Was a Governmental Body Involved?

Under the New Mexico Tort Claims Act, in certain situations, you may have the right to pursue a personal injury lawyer or wrongful death claim if a governmental body was involved. These include:

  • In instances where a government entity’s negligence causes injuries or damages
  • Being struck by a law enforcement officer’s motor vehicle
  • Ongoing road construction without sufficient signs or notice
  • Dangerous or defective government property
  • Failure to maintain roads, streets, or playgrounds
  • Unlawful injuries or damages caused by law enforcement force or brutality
  • Injuries and damages caused by an illegal arrest

These are only a few ways you might have a claim against a governmental body under the New Mexico Tort Claims Act. If you are still unsure whether you have grounds for a lawsuit, you could find out by contacting your civil rights attorney in Albuquerque, NM for help.

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What to Expect From Your Tort Lawsuit

Although you may feel anxious about moving forward with your tort lawsuit, knowing how the process works might help—and every claim is different. Some parties may settle outside of court, while others must file a formal civil lawsuit against the government official or agency.

The burden of proof in these cases is based on a preponderance of the evidence, so your attorney will need to gather compelling evidence that proves liability in your case.

Having a lawyer on your side can ensure that you will have the opportunity to recover the evidence you need, pursue all relevant avenues for financial recovery, and accurately calculate the value of your claim.

Tort Claims Act Damages

Under the New Mexico Tort Claims Act, the damages an Injury victim can be awarded are limited to the following:

  • Up to $300,000 in current, past, and future medical expenses
  • Up to $200,000 in property damage expenses
  • Up to $400,000 in damages that are not medical bills or property damages
  • Up to $750,000 in maximum total damages

It should also be noted that punitive damages are not allowed to be awarded in New Mexico tort claims. Although common personal injury and wrongful death claims may warrant an award of punitive damages, this is prohibited under New Mexico law.

Call Harrison & Hart, LLC for Help with Your Government Tort Today

Pursuing a tort claim against a government official or agency is more complex than claims against an individual or corporation. However, you can rest easy knowing you have a dedicated government tort lawyer in Albuquerque, NM advocating for you.

Reach out to our Harrison & Hart, LLC team for a no-cost, risk-free consultation today. You can reach us through our quick contact form or by phone at (505) 295-3261 when you are ready to get started on your government tort claim.

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We’re ready to help you get your life back on track.

From our office in Albuquerque, Harrison & Hart, LLC serves clients throughout New Mexico. We are focused on getting you the best outcome possible in the harshest of situations.

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