City of San Antonio v. Cervantes, 04-16-00569-CV (4th COA. 02/22/2017)
- United States Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit
- LUZ ELENA D. CHAPA, JUSTICE
Charles Cervantes, a Bexar County Sheriff’s worker, suffered a work-related injury in an accident in a parking lot. A San Antonio police officer hit the car Cervantes was driving, and he sued the City of San Antonio (the appellant) for negligence nearly two years after the accident. Appellant argued its had sovereign immunity because Cervantes failed to properly notify the city and it had no actual knowledge of the injuries, but the trial court denied appellant’s plea to the jurisdiction, and an interlocutory appeal followed. The court found that the Texas Tort Claims Act requires that governmental bodies receive notice of a claim within six months of the underlying incident as a condition of waiving immunity. The court noted that an affidavit from the risk manager in the city’s claims department showed no record of Cervantes reporting an injury before filing suit. It rejected Cervantes’ claim the affidavit was invalid because the manager had not been employed in the position in the entire time since the incident; the court found that the manager had access to records since the time of the incident. The court also found the city had no actual knowledge because police reports at the time indicated no injury and also indicated that police officers asked Cervantes if he was injured. Thus, the court held that the city had no actual knowledge of injury and was not notified of an injury within the statutory six-month timeframe. The court reversed the trial court’s judgment and dismissed the suit for lack of jurisdiction. City of San Antonio v. Cervantes, San Antonio Court of Appeals, Case No. 04-16-00569-CV, 2/22/17.
When people are hurt on the job because of another person’s negligence or misconduct, they may be able to file a claim for workers’ compensation benefits. They may also be able to file a third-party lawsuit against persons other than their employers. If your workplace injury was caused by someone other than your employer or co-employer, or if your employer does not maintain workers’ compensation insurance for his or her employees, you may still be able to receive reimbursement for all of your actual damages, not just lost wages and medical expenses.
We have helped people recover compensation for a wide variety of workplace injuries, including those caused by:
Offshore injuries & maritime accidents
Plant & refinery accidents
Asbestosis & mesothelioma
Manufacturing accidents involving defective tools & faulty machinery
Car accidents & truck accidents
Fire & Explosions