Municipalities are in a difficult position when facing lawsuits brought against them by residents, individuals, or businesses, because any damages or penalties assessed may directly and significantly affect their taxpayers.
Patton & Ryan attorneys vigorously defend municipalities and other governmental agencies in litigation stemming from accidents and incidents occurring on public grounds, in publicly funded projects, or involving public officials including city attorneys, city managers, risk pool managers, and others.
These can include claims of employment and other discrimination, sexual and other types of harassment, wrongful arrest and detention, retaliatory discharge, denial of permits, and a wide range of civil rights violations. We regularly handle cases involving allegations of construction defect and design, medical malpractice, property rights, contract and tort claims, and other public official liability.
In many of these disputes, the applicable laws (or their application) can vary widely by city or state, and we are comfortable representing municipal clients in small towns and major metropolises nationwide.
Recently, we have defended police departments against allegations that an officer used excessive force in restraining an individual who was injured, and both automobile and pedestrian accidents that occurred during police chases. Our lawyers provide counsel in “slip-and-fall” premise suits over injuries that occur in municipal buildings, and in cases involving security issues in public housing facilities. We also represent entities such as the Illinois Department of Transportation in suits brought after highway-construction-work-related accidents where barricade systems were absent or faulty.
Our strategic approach helps clients develop proactive policies to reduce exposure to liability while taking into consideration the budgetary challenges they face. We cultivate and maintain strong relationships with city officials, police officers, and other public servants, as well as the insurance companies that are footing the bill for a lawsuit’s defense.