Suit against employee; act occurring after May 13, 1987; limitation of action.
(1) No suit shall be commenced against any employee of a political subdivision for money on account of damage to or loss of property or personal injury to or the death of any person caused by any negligent or wrongful act or omission of the employee while acting in the scope of his or her office or employment occurring after May 13, 1987, unless a claim has been submitted in writing to the governing body of the political subdivision within one year after such claim accrued in accordance with section 13-905.
(2) No suit shall be permitted on a claim filed pursuant to this section unless the governing body of the political subdivision has made final disposition of the claim, except that if the governing body does not make final disposition of the claim within six months after the claim is filed, the claimant may, by notice in writing, withdraw the claim from consideration of the governing body and begin suit.
(3) Except as provided in section 13-919, any suit commenced on any claim filed pursuant to this section shall be forever barred unless begun within two years after the claim accrued. The time to begin suit under this section shall be extended for a period of six months (a) from the date of mailing of notice to the claimant by the governing body as to the final disposition of the claim or (b) from the date of withdrawal of the claim from the governing body under this section, if the time to begin suit would otherwise expire before the end of such period.
Source:Laws 1987, LB 258, § 1; R.S.Supp.,1987, § 23-2416.01.
A claim alleging that an employee acting within the course and scope of his employment caused a motor vehicle accident by failing to stop on a rain-slicked street is a claim within and subject to the provisions of the Political Subdivisions Tort Claims Act. Wise v. Omaha Public Schools, 271 Neb. 635, 714 N.W.2d 19 (2006).
The evident purpose of the 6-month extension of the filing deadline set forth in subsection (2) of section 13-919 is to provide claimants who filed timely claims, but filed those claims with the wrong tribunal or pursuant to the wrong statute, enough time to present their claims to the proper political subdivision. This requires, however, that those claimants still act promptly in order to satisfy the public purpose reflected in the notice requirements. A claim "made or filed under any other law of this state," within the meaning of subsection (2) of section 13-919, must still be filed within the 1-year time limit imposed by the appropriate notice provision of either subsection (1) of section 13-919 or subsection (1) of this section. Keller v. Tavarone, 265 Neb. 236, 655 N.W.2d 899 (2003).
The primary purpose of notice provisions in connection with actions against political subdivisions is to afford municipal authorities prompt notice of the accident and injury in order that an investigation may be made while the occurrence is still fresh and the municipal authorities are in a position to intelligently consider the claim and to allow it if deemed just or, in the alternative, to adequately protect and defend the public interest. Keller v. Tavarone, 265 Neb. 236, 655 N.W.2d 899 (2003).
The filing of a notice of claim under the Political Subdivisions Tort Claims Act is a condition precedent to the institution of a suit to which the act applies. The partial payment of an insurance claim by a political subdivision's insurer standing alone is insufficient to create a question of fact precluding summary judgment as to whether the political subdivision is equitably estopped to assert the 1-year filing requirement. Keene v. Teten, 8 Neb. App. 819, 602 N.W.2d 29 (1999).
Written notice of the withdrawal of a claim from the consideration of the governing body is not mandatory, but is permissive or discretionary. Notice of withdrawal of a claim is not a requirement for commencing suit and applies only if the plaintiff wishes to extend the time period for filing suit under section 13-919(1). Keating v. Wiese, 1 Neb. App. 865, 510 N.W.2d 433 (1993).