Deadline for Filing a Claim Against the Federal Government - Federal Tort Claim Act Claim
If you have been injured by the negligence of a federal employee, there is a strict time limit within which you must file your claim against the federal government. The deadline for filing claims based on the actions of federal employees is governed by the Federal Tort Claim Act (FTCA). According to the FTCA, you must file a claim with the appropriate federal agency within two (2) years from the date of the wrong. Even if you do not know the full extent of your injuries or damages when the misconduct occurs, the two-year deadline still applies. Failure to file your claim within this deadline will likely mean that it is forever barred.
In addition to the initial two year deadline, the FTCA contains a second deadline. If you are not pleased with the findings of the federal agency, then you must file a civil lawsuit within six (6) months after the date that the agency’s decision is mailed. If the agency fails to act on your claim within six months of it being submitted, then you can consider that a denial for purposes of filing a lawsuit. The FTCA requires that both of these strict deadlines be met in order to have a valid claim against the federal government.Common Issues with FTCA DeadlinesMinors
Unlike many laws, the FTCA does not provide any general extension of the time limit for filing claims based on the fact that the injured party is a minor or juvenile. If your child has been injured due to the actions of a federal employee, call our office at 615-742-4880 or toll-free at 866-812-8787 to speak to one of our experienced trial attorneys and ensure that your child’s claim against the government is filed on time.Medical Malpractice
Many states, including Tennessee, have adopted “statutes of repose” for medical malpractice cases. Statute of repose are absolute deadlines by which a case must be filed. This means that in Tennessee you must file a claim for medical negligence within three (3) years from the date the medical negligence actually occurred. Although the time limit for filing an FTCA claim is generally governed by federal law, these state-imposed absolute deadlines have been enforced by federal courts in medical malpractice claims against the federal government. This means that the civil suit which can be filed after the federal agency claim must be filed within this three year period. Accordingly, if you think a government employee committed medical negligence in Tennessee which resulted in an injury to you or a loved one, you must consider both the FTCA deadlines listed above as well as the three year absolute deadline imposed by Tennessee law (or any other applicable state’s statute of repose).Contact a Lawyer Immediately
With multiple deadlines to consider and comply with, suing the federal government can be tricky. Failure to meet even one time limit can mean that your case against the government can never be brought. Because of these strict time limits, it is important to contact an attorney as soon as possible to discuss your potential claims.
If you have been injured due to the actions of a government employee, call our office at 615-742-4880 or toll-free at 866-812-8787, or contact us online for a free, no-obligation consultation with one of our award-winning attorneys. We will review your case and let you know whether we can help, ensuring that all deadlines are met. We handle all accident cases on a contingency basis so we only get paid if we win. For more information on our fees and expenses, click here.