The Trial Division defends suits brought against state agencies, officials and employees who are sued in the context of their agency duties. The types of cases generally include employment, torts, civil rights, contracts, erroneous conviction, eminent domain and land use cases. These suits generally seek damages or other relief for alleged wrongful acts of government agencies, officials or employees.
The Trial Division handles cases in both federal and state court, and the cases range from those with simple fact patterns to multi-million dollar cases with complex fact patterns and legal issues.
The Trial Division also initiates affirmative litigation on behalf of state agencies when such litigation is in the public interest and has significant monetary value or raises significant legal or policy issues. As required by statute, the Trial Division reviews and approves all pre-litigation settlements of tort claims against the Commonwealth or its agencies of $2,500 or more.
The Trial Division develops and maintains close working relationships with agency counsel and provides them with information and advice, particularly where advance consultation may prevent unnecessary litigation. The Division also reviews various conveyance documents submitted by state agencies for approval as to form.