High court makes it easier to sue government for negligence

Congress

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court is making it easier for people to sue the federal government for negligence.

The justices, voting 5-4, ruled in two cases Wednesday that the deadlines for filing such lawsuits can be extended if plaintiffs tried their best to comply or simply failed to learn about important information before a deadline.

Justice Elena Kagan wrote the majority opinion that combined the cases and upheld rulings by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that said the deadlines were somewhat flexible under the federal law that deals with lawsuits against the government.

The Obama administration argued that Congress intended the deadlines to be firm and that the government should not leave itself open to old claims indefinitely.

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