There’s an old saying that goes “You can’t fight city hall.” The reality is that individuals and businesses in Kentucky can and often do fight city hall on a number of issues. Kentucky municipalities face legal risks on a variety of fronts:
- As with any other business, employees may raise claims related to employment law. To give some examples, these claims may include allegations of employment discrimination, wage and hour disputes or whistleblower claims.
- In Kentucky, local governments can face personal injury lawsuits for certain injuries on government property or involving a government employee.
- Many local governments can face liability for accusations of law enforcement misconduct or of other civil rights violations.
- Local governments also frequently deal with private businesses. For example, governments will often need to bid and award contracts to businesses which will do construction on public projects or do other public work. Sometimes, a private business may feel a municipality treated it unfairly and file suit against it.
- Governments and elected officials have many legal obligations and do a wide range of services. As a result, they may face other legal risks aside from those mentioned here.
Government bodies embroiled in disputes need to understand their options
Many government bodies have regular legal counsel who give day-to-day advice.
When it is embroiled in a legal dispute, however, it is important for the municipality to understand all of its rights and options in its case. It frequently makes sense for the government to call in additional legal support from professionals who have a good understanding of the legal risks local governments face.
After all, the public entrusts its elected officials to make the best decisions possible on their behalf. Depending on the facts, it may make more sense for a municipality to compromise a legal claim against it. In other situations, an assertive and firm defense pays off.