How to File a Claim

The best place to start a claim is with your insurance company.  They have the expertise to manage the process and mitigate your damages in a timely manner.  You can also file directly with the City of Las Cruces, Risk Management Department. In most cases, per the New Mexico Tort Claims Act, you have ninety (90) days from the date of the incident to file a claim with the City of Las Cruces. 

The New Mexico Tort Claims Act         

The New Mexico Tort Claims Act was enacted in order to clarify the circumstances and procedures under which government entities are responsible for injuries or damages involving their property or employees. The section describing the requirements for filing a claim is shown below:

 41-4-16. Notice of Claims. – [New Mexico Tort Claims Act]

  1. Every Person who claims damages from the state or any local public body under the Tort Claims Act {41-4-1 to 41-4-27 NMSA 1978} shall cause to be presented to the Risk Management Division for claims against the state, the mayor of the municipality for claims against the municipality, the superintendent of the school district for claims against the school district, the county clerk of a county for claims against the county, or the administrative head of any other local public body for claims such local public body, within ninety (90) days after an occurrence giving rise to a claim for which immunity has been waived under Tort Claims Act, a written notice stating the time, place and circumstances of the loss or injury.

What is a claim? What isn’t? 

The Tort Claims Act provides that the state and its political subdivisions have immunity from legal liability, with specific exceptions. A list of these exceptions, where the City of Las Cruces may be held financially responsible, can be found in sections 41-4-5 through 41-4-12 of the Act.

It is our job to make sure you are fairly compensated if you have suffered property damage or personal injury for incidents the City of Las Cruces is liable for. We are responsible for City infrastructure and property.

Areas of Possible Immunity

Below is a list of some unfortunate events that are not within our areas of responsibility, for which the City of Las Cruces is seldom held responsible:

  • Theft or damage by unknown individuals to your personal property, even on City property.
  • Vehicle damage due to road conditions where the City has not been negligent maintaining the road, or was not made aware of the problem prior to the occurrence. Public entities are entitled to a reasonable period of time to repair a deficiency once they are made aware of it.
  • Debris in city streets that the City has not been made aware of prior to the occurrence, or been given a reasonable amount of time to resolve.
  • Damage due to extreme weather events, such as flooding or fallen tree limbs.
  • Events outside of City limits that do not involve City property.

While this is not comprehensive, it will give you an idea of how the Risk Management Division may respond to a given claim.

Risk Management is requesting that all claims be submitted via email at [email protected]. Claims may be submitted in person, by mail, or email.


[email protected]

Physical Address

City Hall
700 N. Main St., Suite 3200
Las Cruces, NM 88001

Mailing Address

City of Las Cruces
Risk Management Department
P.O. Box 20000
Las Cruces, NM 88004

However you choose to submit the claim form, the requested information is the same.  All claims against the City of Las Cruces must be made using either the Liability Claim Form (PDF) or the Discolored Water Claim Form (PDF)  All information and supporting documents submitted will not be returned.  Keep copies for your records.  Copies will not be made in the office.  

List of items that should be submitted to support the claim:

  • Police Report
  • Photographs of the damage
  • Quote(s) for repair/replacement
  • Invoices/proof of purchase.  
  • Other documents may be requested if necessary

Following the receipt of a claim, the Risk Management Office will: 

  • Conduct an investigation to verify that the event was caused by the City of Las Cruces and not another person or entity. The City will not pay for a loss when another person or entity caused the loss.
  • Verify the actual loss.  
  • If we determine that you have suffered a loss where the City was liable, an offer to settle will be made.  If we pay for the replacement of damaged items you will be required to surrender those items.  Any items disposed of before obtaining written permission from the City of Las Cruces Risk Management Department will not be considered part of the claim.
  • When a decision is made, the claimant will be notified via mail.
  • Claims are normally processed within 30 days after the receipt of the claim form.

Claim Deadline: 90 Days

Per the New Mexico Tort Claims Act, cases must be filed within 90 days of the original incident.

Claims filed after the 90-day deadline will be denied.

Be advised that the City is prohibited from providing legal advice. Claimants should consult an attorney as needed.  If you are represented by an attorney, we will only communicate with you through your attorney.