Practice Areas

Government Liability

Case Experience

When governmental entities fail to uphold their responsibilities, individuals and communities can suffer. If you or someone you love is the victim of negligence, you need an experienced attorney to make sure the government is held accountable. At Pfau Cochran Vertetis Amala, we have extensive experience in government liability claims and can effectively achieve results in your case.Governments have vigorous defense lawyers, extensive resources, and can expend tremendous resources in defending your case. Our attorneys take an aggressive and strategic approach to provide you with competitive legal advocacy against governmental entities. Many attorneys do not understand existing requirements about government tort claims and there are numerous traps for the unwary. Our attorneys know how to take on the governmental lawyers that will aggressively seek to destroy your claim. We have extensive trial experience and a track record of winning large verdicts and settlements for our clients.We have represented clients in a number of cases involving the government’s negligence relating to foster children. It is the responsibility of the appropriate governmental agencies to make sure foster parents are qualified and capable of providing the care that children need. When governmental agencies are negligent, the consequences can be widespread.

Examples of Government Liability cases include:

  • Co-counsel in class action lawsuit that obtained a $85,000,000+ judgment against Washington State DSHS (Rekhter v. DSHS)
  • Co-counsel in cases that obtained over $50 million in settlements against a Washington State group home on behalf of sexually abused foster children.
  • School district failed to control a student with dangerous behaviors that led to sexual abuse of four students resulting in a confidential seven-figure settlement.
  • Obtained an $8.3 million jury verdict against DSHS for failing to control foster care children who several beat a neighborhood boy which caused permanent brain injury.
  • Obtained $680,000 settlement for minor child against DSHS for abuse by a respite care provider.
  • Obtained $550,000 settlement against Washington CPS for child abused by dangerous provider in the home.
  • Obtained $270,000 jury verdict against DSHS for molestation of disabled child by care provider.

Additional case examples include:

  • Washington State Department of Corrections failed to properly supervise dangerous parolees in the community resulting in jury verdicts of $22 million; $15 million; and $6.3 million.
  • Obtained a $4 million settlement against the State of Washington Department of Corrections, for their failure to properly supervise a dangerous parolee, resulting in the kidnap and rape of a 7 year old.
  • City of Seattle Fire Department had knowledge of an upcoming arson. Authorities watched arsonist start fire but failed to communicate information to the fire department. When the department delayed response, the building collapsed resulting in the death of four fire fighters. The jury returned a $5.5 million verdict against the negligent parties.
  • Obtained a $2.75 million verdict against the City of Fife, for failure to maintain roadway in safe condition that caused a pool of water to collect causing a fatal pedestrian versus automobile collision.
  • School district failed to enforce transportation policies, which resulted in the death of a fifteen-year-old student. The matter was settled on the third day of trial for a confidential amount.
  • The State of Washington Department of Health refused to timely license a local family-owned oyster grower in Pacific County, which resulted in a $1.4 million jury verdict for business loss.
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