Accidents on City/Municipal Property Lawyers

Just like any other owner of a property, cities and municipalities own property and they are supposed to ensure that their property is safe for people to use as intended.  If they fail to keep the property safe for reasonable use and someone is injured because of that, the injured person can sue for damages.  When people think of property owned by a city or municipality, they usually think of sidewalks and roadways.  The truth is that cities and municipalities own all types of property, including:

  • Parks
  • Hiking Trails
  • Buildings
  • Community Centres
  • Vacant Lots
  • Pathways
  • Cemeteries 
  • Firehalls
  • Parking Lots
  • Public Housing
  • Public Libraries
  • Public Schools

Cities and Municipalities are supposed to ensure that their property is safe for people to use as intended.  If they fail to keep the property safe for reasonable use and someone is injured because of that, the injured person can sue for damages.  

However, given the significant amount of property cities and municipalities own, there are numerous ways someone could be injured on city or municipal property, including:

  • Tripping on defects in pavement or sidewalks
  • Slipping on snow or ice which should have been removed
  • Tripping or falling on poorly maintained trails or stairs
  • Dangerous Signage
  • Improperly Placed or Manufactured Manholes and Other Covers
  • Dangers Caused by Tree Roots
  • Poor Lighting
  • Poorly Maintained Property
  • Dangerous Conditions

The most common accidents which occur on city or municipal property are slip and falls, or trip and falls, on uneven pavement.  However, Cities and municipalities are allowed to make their own policies for ensuring that public sidewalks and roadways are safe and quite often these policies are “reactive” in nature.  This means that unless someone notifies the city or municipality about a potential danger, they have no obligation to fix it nor go out looking for dangers.  This can make claims relating to trip and falls on sidewalks very difficult.

If you are injured due to unsafe circumstances on property owned by a city or municipality, the laws are different, and you’ll need to act fast as there are special timelines in which you have to notify a city/municipality about an accident which are much shorter than the timelines for other types of accidents.  If you miss these deadlines your claim could be statute barred.

Contact the lawyers at Taylor & Blair LLP for help with your claim against city/municipality negligence.