Filing a Risk Fund Claim Against the City

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​Marti Praschan,
Chief Financial Officer

734.794.6500 x45100

The City of Ann Arbor's City Administrator or designee administers the Risk Fund for the City. For most Risk Fund claims, the City is self-insured up to certain amounts. The City Administrator or designee are empowered to act on such Risk Fund claims. If the City has outside insurance coverage which covers a filed Risk Fund claim, the applicable insurance company handles the adjustment and payment, if any, for such a claim.

Any statements or promises made to you concerning your Risk Fund claim by any City employee or agency are unauthorized and are not binding on the City of Ann Arbor.


A Risk Fund claim can be considered only after it is filed in writing at the Office of the City Clerk or online at  Click here for our onlin​e claim form​.

Claimants are strongly encouraged to use the online claim form.

If you choose not to use the online claim form, you can request a hard copy. Please contact the City of Ann Arbor’s risk management at 734.794.6570

Mailed forms must be sent to:​

Office of City Clerk
Larcom City Hall
301 E. Huron St.
P.O. Box 8647
Ann Arbor, MI 48107-8647


FAX: 734.994.2777 – Attn: Risk Specialist

Types of Risk​ Fund Claims

The city separates Risk Fund claims into two types:

1. Standard – Any claim not related to sewer overflow or backup.

2. Sewer – Any claim related to sewer overflow or backup.

In order for the City to consider your claim, you must provide the following information within forty-five (45) days of the date the damage was discovered for a sewer claim, and within ninety (90) days of the incident for a standard claim:

  • A statement that you intend to hold the City liable for the injury or damage, or claim.
  • The time, date and exact location of the reported incident.
  • The manner in which the injury, damage, or claim occurred.
  • The name and address of any witnesses.
  • Police accident report or number, if any.
  • The amount of damages claimed. In all cases, damages should be itemized and totaled.

You must file your claim within the stated time even if you do not have all the required information.

For property damage cases, this would include estimates for repair (at least two estimates for automobile damage), evidence of the fair market value of the property, and evidence of the condition of the property immediately prior to the accident. 

For proof of damages, attach receipts, photos, or written estimates. For personal injury cases, necessary information includes records of the injury and medical reports.

Provide name, policy number and phone number of your insurance company. Be sure your name, address, email address and telephone numbers are on your claim.

By filing a Risk Fund claim, you agree to allow the City or its agent to inspect your property or investigate the physical injury.  Unreasonable refusal of such inspection or investigation will be grounds for denial of your claim.

The City Administrator or designee cannot consider your claim until all necessary information has been received.  Because of the procedure that must be followed, sometime must elapse between the filing and final disposition of your claim. Please be assured that as soon as you provide the necessary information, your claim will be promptly considered, and you will receive a response on your claim.

What Happens ​After a Risk Fund Claim is Filed?

Once the City receives a claim, the City will perform an investigation. A third-party contractor for the City may perform this investigation. Until a final decision is made on a claim, any statement or promise made concerning your claim by any City employee or its agent is unauthorized and not binding on the City’s final approval or denial.

If the City’s investigation determines a different party may be responsible, the City will notify the claimant so that the claimant may take appropriate steps.  In the case of a sewer claim, if the City’s investigation determines that a different or additional governmental agency may be responsible, the City will notify the other governmental agency.

As a claimant, you should be aware that the City has two levels of approval, depending on the value of your claim

1.    Claims of $75,000 or less are reviewed and may be approved or denied by the City Administrator or designee.

2.    If a claim is recommended for approval by the City Administrator or designee for an expenditure over $75,000, City Council must approve or deny the expenditure.

No monies will be paid until a final approval has been made.

The City Administrator or designee will consider claims and make decisions regarding the City’s liability for claims.  These decisions are communicated to claimants as soon as practicable. Extenuating circumstances or the need for City Council approval of the decision may delay this communication.

If your claim is approved, in part or in whole, you will be compensated as approved by the City Administrator​ or designee (and City Council if the expenditure is over $75,000). Upon execution of a release of liability, a check will be delivered by mail.

W​hat is the Appeal Process?

If your claim is denied, you may appeal the decision.  To schedule an appeal, you may call 734.794.​6570.  

The appeal process is a presentation by the claimant contesting the denial of the claim.  It is not a legal proceeding, question and answer session, fact finding, or examination.  A claimant may file an appeal up to 30 days after the claimant is notified in writing of the determination on their claim.  A claimant's appeal must be heard within 90 days of the claimant's notice of appeal.​​

When your appeal is heard, you will be given an opportunity to make a presentation. Appeals are limited to 15 minutes in duration. Appeals are typically made solely by the claimant(s), but you may make your appeal with assistance from others as long as all speakers can be heard in the allotted time. You should focus on why you believe the decision was an error or present new information that was not submitted with the claim. Written materials are welcome in advance of the appeal.

If you believe 15 minutes is insufficient to present your appeal, you may utilize the scheduled 15 minutes to explain why the time is inadequate. The request will be considered, and if approved additional time will be scheduled for a subsequent meeting.

If you have any special requests regarding your appeal, please call 734.794.6570. Upon completion of the appeal review, the claimant will receive a written decision on the appeal after the appropriate level of approval is obtained.

The above process represents the extent of the City’s administrative claims and appeal process.

If you have any questions or would like more information, please call 734.794.6570.

The City is Required to Provide the Following Legal Notices


Claimant may have the right to personal protection insurance benefits, property insurance benefits, and/or residual liability insurance benefits if in compliance with the regulations and restrictions contained in the Michigan No-Fault Insurance Law, Public Act 294 of 1972. Please contact your insurance company to determine if you are eligible to receive these benefits. If your policy is not covered under Michigan No-Fault, please contact the City of Ann Arbor’s risk management at 734.794.6570.

The City of Ann Arbor will pay claims in a timely manner as prescribed by the Michigan No-Fault Insurance Law.

If there are any questions concerning the City of Ann Arbor’s failure to fulfill its responsibilities under the Michigan No-Fault Law, please contact:

Michigan Department of Insurance and Financial Services
P.O. Box 30220
Lansing, MI  48909-77
Telephone:  877.999.6442


Under Public Act 222 of 2001 (MCL 691.1416 - 691.1419), a claimant may seek compensation for property damage or physical injury from a governmental agency if the claimant shows that all of the following existed at the time of the event:

  • The governmental agency was the "appropriate governmental agency,"
  • The sewage disposal system had a defect,
  • The governmental agency knew, or in the exercise of reasonable diligence should have known, about the defect,
  • The governmental agency, having the legal authority to do so, failed to take reasonable steps in a reasonable amount of time to repair, correct, or remedy the defect, and
  • The defect was a substantial proximate cause of the event in the property damage or physical injury.

In addition to the above requirements to seek damages, to obtain compensation for property damage or physical injury, a claimant has to show both of the following:

  • Personal property – reasonable proof of ownership and the value of the damaged personal property (reasonable proof could include testimony or records documenting ownership, purchase price or value of the property or photographic or similar evidence showing the value of the property) and
  • The claimant followed the proper notification protocol to seek damages from the governmental agency.

 A claimant may not file a civil action against the City until at least 45 days have passed after the date the claimant’s sewer claim was filed with the City.

Online Risk Fu​nd Claim Forms