How to File a Claim Against the State
Submit a Claim
If you would like to submit a claim against a state department or agency, please use the Government Claim Form.
For details on how to prepare and mail a claim, see Frequently Asked Questions About Filing Government Claims. If you do not use the Government Claims Program claim Form, you must provide sufficient information to process the claim and the request must be appropriately signed.
A processing fee of $25.00 is required to file a claim. See the Government Claims Filing Fee and Fee Waiver page for more information about the fee and the option of having the fee waived under certain conditions. In particular circumstances when a claim is awarded, the $25.00 filing fee will be refunded to the claimant by the paying agency.
Timelines for Filing Claims
Claims for death or injury to a person, damage to personal property or damage to growing crops must be filed within six (6) months after the incident occurred. All other claims must be filed within one (1) year after the incident occurred.
If the claim should have been filed within six (6) months after the incident occurred and the deadline was missed, claimants must file a "leave to present a late claim" within one (1) year. For more details on late claims, please see the Frequently Asked Questions About Filing Government Claims.
Review and Processing of Claims
When the GCP receives a claim, staff determines if it meets criteria for sufficiency, jurisdiction and timeliness. Often, the program works closely with the affected department in an effort to resolve the matter. If a resolution cannot be reached, staff then develops a recommendation based on the case facts and input from the affected department. The three-member Board acts on the recommendation during a public meeting where those involved in the claim are given the opportunity to comment.
Payment of Claims
If the three-member Board approves a claim, payment is made either by the affected department from existing funds or through an appropriation established by legislation (an annual omnibus claims bill) approved by the Legislature and signed by the Governor.
For additional information please see Government Code Sections 910 – 913.2.