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Our People & Organization Office of the General Counsel

 

Overview

The Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA) sets forth procedures for presenting and resolving administrative monetary claims for personal injury, property damage, or death arising from the alleged negligence of officers and employees of the Office of Personnel Management acting in the scope of their official duties.

Under the FTCA, 28 U.S.C. §§ 2671-2680, individuals who are injured or whose property is damaged by the wrongful or negligent act of a federal employee acting within his or her official duties may file a claim with the government for reimbursement for that injury or damage. To state a valid claim, the claimant must demonstrate that:

  1. he or she was injured, or his or her property was damaged by a federal government employee;
  2. the employee was acting within the scope of his or her official duties;
  3. the employee was acting negligently or wrongfully; and
  4. the negligent or wrongful act proximately caused the injury or damage of which he or she complains.

The claimant must also provide documentation establishing that his claim satisfies all the elements of the FTCA. The procedures laid out here apply only to claims arising from alleged conduct of officers and employees of the Office of Personnel Management.

How to Submit

If you become injured or your property is damaged and you believe that the injury or damage was caused by the negligence or wrongful act or omission of the U.S. Office of Personnel Management or its employee acting within the scope of his or her official duties, you may file a tort claim against OPM. OPM processes claims in accordance with the Federal Tort Claims Act, 28 U.S.C. § 1346(b), §§ 2671-2680, and the OPM implementing regulations 5 CFR part 177.

To file a claim, complete these steps:

  1. Complete Standard Form 95. Explain in detail what happened, using additional pages if necessary. Make sure you specify the total amount of money you seek in block 12d and sign the form in block 13a.
  2. Attach all documents that support your claim, which may include the following:
    • For property damage: Attach relevant receipts, estimates, invoices for repairs, and photographs of the damaged item. If the item cannot be repaired, provide the age of the item and its purchase price. If you were involved in a car accident, send a copy of the police report.
    • For personal injury: Attach medical records, including the doctor’s diagnosis, records of treatment, treatment plans, receipts, medical bills, and a statement indicating what portion of your treatment, if any, is being paid under a medical insurance plan. Include all documents that support the injuries you are claiming.
    • For lost wages: Attach proof of employment and salary, a statement from your employer for the time you were absent, and a doctor’s statement indicating you were unable to work due to the injury.
  3. Submit the completed Standard Form 95 and supporting documents to the OPM Office of the General Counsel. You may submit your claim and supporting documents one of three ways:
    • Mail your claim and documents to:

      Associate General Counsel
      Office of General Counsel
      U.S. Office of Personnel Management 1900 E Street NW, Room 7347
      Washington, D.C. 20415

    • Email your claim and supporting documents to FTCAClaim@opm.gov
    • Fax your claim and supporting documents to 202-606-2609

OPM will investigate and make a determination on your claim. The decision will be forwarded to you by certified mail. This process may take several months. Please call the Office of General Counsel at (202) 606-1700 or email the office at FTCAClaim@opm.gov with any questions.

Frequently Asked Questions About The Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA) Claims Processing

  • Block 8 of the Standard Form 95 should be used to describe the facts and circumstances for the claim and in that block you should describe the losses you suffered from the incident. Additional pages may be attached to the SF-95 if needed. In addition, you should attach any documentation to substantiate amounts of your claims to the Standard Form 95. Generally speaking, you may submit amendments to the claim based on additional information at a later time. OPM  may request additional information as well.
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  • Individuals, businesses or governmental entities that have a claim for money damages resulting from personal injury, property damage or economic loss caused by a negligent or wrongful act of an OPM employee acting within the scope of his or her official OPM duties. Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-priority:99; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin-top:0in; mso-para-margin-right:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:10.0pt; mso-para-margin-left:0in; line-height:115%; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:11.0pt; font-family:"Calibri","sans-serif"; mso-ascii-font-family:Calibri; mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-hansi-font-family:Calibri; mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin;}
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  • Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2675, an individual seeking to claim damages allegedly caused by an OPM employee acting within the scope of his or her official duties must first present a written claim for money damages to OPM.  OPM must issue a final denial of the claim before the claimant may sue OPM.  If OPM does not make a final disposition of a claim within six months after it is filed, the claimant may choose to deem the claim denied and file suit against OPM in an appropriate United States district court.
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  • You have two years from the date of the event to file a claim with OPM under the FTCA for injury or damage. Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-priority:99; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin-top:0in; mso-para-margin-right:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:10.0pt; mso-para-margin-left:0in; line-height:115%; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:11.0pt; font-family:"Calibri","sans-serif"; mso-ascii-font-family:Calibri; mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-hansi-font-family:Calibri; mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin;}
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  • If you are dissatisfied with an OPM decision on your FTCA claim, you may file suit in an appropriate United States district court not later than 6 months after the date of mailing of the notification.
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  • A claim for loss totally compensated by an insurer with the rights to subrogate may be presented  to OPM by the insurer. A claim for loss partially compensated by an insurer with the rights to subrogate may be presented by the insurer or the insured individually, as their respective interests appear, or jointly. When an insurer presents a claim asserting the rights to subrogate, the insurer must present with the claim appropriate evidence that shows the insurer has the rights to subrogate, such as a written statement signed by the insured authorizing the company to file the claim on the insured’s behalf.
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