When you intend to sue the State of Oregon, Oregon law requires that you file a Notice of Claim against the state. Essentially, you have to tell the state that you intend to sue them.
What is an Oregon Government Tort Claims Notice?
ORS 30.275 requires that you file with the State of Oregon what’s called a “notice of claim.” A notice of claim is satisfied by:
- Formal notice, of claim as provided in subsections (4) and (5) of this section;
- Actual notice, of claim as provided in subsection (6) of this section;
- Commencement of an action; or
- Payment of all or any part of the claim by or on behalf of the public body at any time.
Formal notice is further defined as a written communication from a claimant or representative of a claimant containing:
- A statement that a claim for damages is or will be asserted against the public body or an officer, employee or agent of the public body;
- A description of the time, place and circumstances giving rise to the claim, so far as known to the claimant; and
- The name of the claimant and the mailing address to which correspondence concerning the claim may be sent.
Formal notice of claim shall be given by mail or personal delivery:
- If the claim is against the state or an officer, employee or agent thereof, to the office of the Director of the Oregon Department of Administrative Services.
- If the claim is against a local public body or an officer, employee or agent thereof, to the public body at its principal administrative office, to any member of the governing body of the public body, or to an attorney designated by the governing body as its general counsel.
Actual notice of claim is defined as any communication by which any individual to whom notice may be given as provided above or any person responsible for administering tort claims on behalf of the public body acquires actual knowledge of the time, place and circumstances giving rise to the claim, where the communication is such that a reasonable person would conclude that a particular person intends to assert a claim against the public body or an officer, employee or agent of the public body. A person responsible for administering tort claims on behalf of a public body is a person who, acting within the scope of the person’s responsibility, as an officer, employee or agent of a public body or as an employee or agent of an insurance carrier insuring the public body for risks within the scope of ORS 30.260 to ORS 30.300, engages in investigation, negotiation, adjustment or defense of claims within the scope of ORS 30.260 to ORS 30.300, or in furnishing or accepting forms for claimants to provide claim information, or in supervising any of those activities.
Filing a Claim Under the Oregon Tort Claims Act
The best preserve your rights, it’s best to have an attorney assist you in filing a notice of tort claims. However, if you cannot afford proper legal representation, examples of Oregon Tort Claims Forms can be found on the State of Oregon Risk Management Page.
Warning: Time is of the essence in filing a notice of tort claims. Make sure to do it within 180 days of the date of injury or claim.