Over the last few weeks, Baumgartner Law has filed over 50 Colorado Governmental Immunity Act (CGIA) notices to the City of Denver regarding police misconduct occurring during the George Floyd Protest as required under Article 10 Title 24 of CO Rev Stat § 24-10-109 (2016). This statute mandates that in order to preserve a state law claim against a public entity or a public employee, that person must file a written notice of the injury to the public entity or public employee within 182 days.
While this was necessary for those involved in at the beginning of the George Floyd Protest, as of June 19th, 2020, claims against police for violations of state law or federal constitutional violations brought in state court will no longer require this notice. As part of the new Enhance Law Enforcement Integrity law, Senate Bill 217, the requirement to provide notice specifically for the policing issues has been eliminated. Section 13-21-131 of the new law states qualified immunity is no longer a bar suit regarding state claims against police officers or police entities. The section further states, “’The Colorado Governmental Immunity Act’, Article 10 of Title 24, does not apply to claims brought pursuant to this section.” Thus, for all violations caused by the police in Colorado brought in state court after June 19, 2020, there is no longer a requirement to serve notice.
The provision eliminating the need for the notices is only intended for claims against the police or police entities as a whole. Therefore, if your rights are violated by the police in conjunction with another public entity, you will still need to provide a CGIA notice to the entities that is not policing entities within 182 days. This law is new, and it will take time to work through all the ins-and-outs regarding procedure, so, until the courts are able to provide guidance on the procedural process, if you are in this situation, we recommend sending a notice to the policing entity and all other public entities involved for good measure to preserve your claim.
If you have any question about this or any other aspect of a civil rights claim against a public entity, please call Baumgartner Law at 303-LAW-FIRM.