Claims for Damage or Injury
Filing a Claim Against the City
If you have incurred damage to your property or had an injury and you believe the City may be responsible, please follow the process below to send your claim to the City for consideration. Be aware that there are notice periods for providing the City with notice of certain types of claims and limitation periods in respect to all claims. Further, if you do not commence legal action to advance your claim within the time periods prescribed by the Limitations Act of Alberta, the City and its employees will be entitled to immunity from liability.
If you are unsure about how to file a claim, would like a claim form mailed or faxed to you, or have filed a claim and have questions about the investigation or status of the claim, please call Strategic Services (Insurance & Claims) at 780-418-6003, Monday to Friday, between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m.
Note: Payment for property damage or bodily injury is contingent upon the City being found legally liable. We suggest that in all cases of damage you also contact your insurance company or broker.
Upon receipt of your claim, Strategic Services (Insurance and Claims) will make best efforts to acknowledge your claim within a week. An investigation begins upon receipt of your claim and typically a final response will be sent within three weeks.
Please note that that some claims may take longer than three weeks to investigate and reach resolution.
Claim Reporting Process
Complete the following Notice of Claim (Word Format) or prepare your notice of claim in writing, and ensure it contains the following information:
- Name, mailing address, email address and telephone number of the person making the claim;
- Date, time and location of the incident (include direction and lane of travel, closest intersection or reference point and a diagram or map if needed);
- Description of incident (include the name of City Department and/or employee involved, the name of the contractor if known, unit number or complete description of the vehicle, equipment or property allegedly involved in the incident);
- Description of property damaged
- Description of damage or injury
- Contact information for any witnesses
Note: Fraudulent claims cost all taxpayers. The City will prosecute all fraudulent claims to the full extent of the law.
City Compensation for Your Costs
The City will not be held responsible for your costs unless you can provide evidence the City committed a negligent act or omission which resulted in injury or damage. Like most Canadian municipalities, the City of St. Albert only compensates when it is legally liable for the damage sustained. This approach helps to reduce costs for the taxpaying public - who ultimately bear the cost of these claims.
We suggest that you contact your own insurer regarding damages. Depending on the situation, you may be eligible for more compensation from your insurers than you can recover from the City. If your insurer believes the City is liable, it will deal with the City on your behalf.
If it is determined the loss falls within the jurisdiction of a contract, your claim will be forwarded to the contractor for an investigation and response, as they are contractually required to do so.
Note: It is important that you make efforts to minimize damage to your property. If you do not, you may be held responsible for part of the damage cost.
Whenever damage to City property is caused by a third-party, Strategic Services (Insurance & Claims) seeks recovery of the related costs from the responsible party (e.g., for damage to property such as street lights and hydrants).
Property Damage and Claim FAQ's
My vehicle was damaged driving through a pothole. What should I do?
Do not continue to drive your vehicle if it is not operating properly. Have a licensed automobile mechanic inspect the damage. If you believe the damage will exceed your automobile insurance deductible, contact your insurance representative for assistance.
There is a water meter leak or water line break affecting my property. What should I do?
Water mains run underneath the roadway and supply fresh water to the private services connected to it. The private service brings water from the water main to your building and is the owner's responsibility.
If there is water gushing out of the street, a water main or water pipe has probably broken on the street. Please contact the Public Works Department immediately.
My sewer is backing up. What should I do?
If you think you are experiencing a sewer backup please contact the Public Works Department.
An operator will be notified of your service request and will contact you for more details prior to responding.
For more information on sewer backups and what you should know about your sewer service line and system, view our Sewer Issues section.
Should I call my insurance company?
Yes. Many insurance policies cover cleanup and the cost of repairing or replacing water-damaged property. Also, they may suggest methods to minimize the extent of your damage. Your insurance representative can provide full details.
Note: Depending on the situation, you may be eligible for more compensation from your insurer than you can recover from the City. If your insurer believes the City is liable it will deal with the City on your behalf.
What if I think the damage is the City’s fault?
If you want to claim directly against the City, Filing a Claim against the City Form provides the information you need. When the claim is reported, an investigation of the location and details provided will be handled by Risk & Insurance Services staff. Based on the findings of this investigation you will be compensated if staff believe the City is legally liable for the damage.
Typically, when an insurer pays for your damage they will try to recover the amount of your deductible as well as the amount that they paid.
Will the City pay my costs?
The City of St. Albert only pays claims when all evidence indicates that the City would be found liable in a court of law. In many cases, the City is protected from liability by legislation or by adherence to policy. This approach minimizes costs for taxpayers who ultimately bear the cost of claims.
We recommend that everyone whose property or vehicle is damaged contact their insurance representative to report damage promptly; this is a requirement of your insurance policy.
How can I report hazards?
Tell us if you see a hazard. ‘Hazards’ are such things as potholes, heaved or cracked sidewalks, fallen tree branches, unlit traffic lights, damaged street signs, etc.
Please describe the location of the hazard and provide as many details as you can. For example the:
- name of the street, sidewalk or park
- nearest building number, or
- name of the nearest cross-street or area in the park
You can also report hazards on the City website. We appreciate your interest in helping us keep our City safe - and a great place to live.
What steps can I take if I disagree with claims decision?
If you disagree with the final decision made, you may go through the Provincial Court of Alberta or the Supreme Court of Alberta. The Mayor, and/or Council members do not handle appeals on claims.
Last edited: October 28, 2021