State Codes and Statutes

State Codes and Statutes

Statutes > North-carolina > Chapter_122C > GS_122C-152

§122C‑152.  Liability insurance and waiver of immunity as to torts of agents, employees, and board members.

(a)        An area authority,by securing liability insurance as provided in this section, may waive itsgovernmental immunity from liability for damage by reason of death or injury toperson or property caused by the negligence or tort of any agent, employee, orboard member of the area authority when acting within the scope of hisauthority or within the course of his duties or employment. Governmental immunityis waived by the act of obtaining this insurance, but it is waived by only tothe extent that the area authority is indemnified by insurance for thenegligence or tort.

(b)        Any contract ofinsurance purchased pursuant to this section shall be issued by a company orcorporation licensed and authorized to execute insurance contracts in thisState and shall by its terms adequately insure the area authority against anyand all liability for any damages by reason of death or injury to a person orproperty proximately caused by the negligent acts or torts of the agents,employees, and board members of the area authority when acting within thecourse of their duties or employment. The area board shall determine the extentof the liability and what agents, employees by class, and board members arecovered by any insurance purchased pursuant to this subsection. Any company orcorporation that enters into a contract of insurance as described in thissection with the authority, by this act waives any defense based upon thegovernmental immunity of the area authority.

(c)        Any personssustaining damages, or, in the case of death, his personal representative, maysue an area authority insured under this section for the recovery of damages inany court of competent jurisdiction in this State, but only in a county locatedwithin the geographic limits of the authority. It is no defense to any actionthat the negligence or tort complained of was in pursuance of a governmental ordiscretionary function of the area authority if, and to the extent that, theauthority has insurance coverage as provided by this section.

(d)        Except as expresslyprovided by subsection (c) of this section, nothing in this section deprivesany area authority of any defense whatsoever to any action for damages or torestrict, limit, or otherwise affect any defense which the area authority mayhave at common law or by virtue of any statute. Nothing in this sectionrelieves any person sustaining damages nor any personal representative of anydecedent from any duty to give notice of a claim to the area authority or tocommence any civil action for the recovery of damages within the applicableperiod of time prescribed or limited by statute.

(e)        The area authoritymay incur liability pursuant to this section only with respect to a claimarising after the authority has procured  liability insurance pursuant to thissection and during the time when the insurance is in force.

(f)         No part of thepleadings that relate to or allege facts as to a defendant's insurance againstliability may be read or mentioned in the presence of the trial jury in anyaction brought pursuant to this section. This liability does not attach unlessthe plaintiff waives the right to have all issues of law or fact relating toinsurance in the action determined by a jury. These issues shall be heard anddetermined by the judge, and the jury shall be absent during any motions,arguments, testimony, or announcement of findings of fact or conclusions of lawwith respect to insurance. (1981, c. 539, s. 2; 1985, c. 589, s. 2.)