The Ohio Supreme Court's recent decisions have practically abolished the defense of sovereign immunity for state subdivisions and municipal corporations. For many years, governmental units such as municipal corporations have used this ancient legal doctrine to defend themselves from tort suits arising out of the negligence of their employees. The court's decisions have sent municipalities searching for insurance coverage and have sent plaintiffs attorneys back into court, filing motions to vacate previous adverse judgements.
The effect of such decisions have become more pronounced since the court's decision in Marrek v. Board of Commissioners. In Marrek, the Ohio Supreme Court applied its recently revised standard of governmental liability, giving it retroactive effect, and discussed the only two types of governmental acts still retaining immunity. In light of the court's recent decisions concerning sovereign immunity, it is necessary for any attorney litigating the liability of the state or its subdivisions to understand Marrek's new definition of governmental liability in Ohio.
Emerson, Roger D.
"Ohio's Abrogation of Sovereign Immunity - A Rude Awakening,"
Akron Law Review: Vol. 19
, Article 6.
Available at: https://ideaexchange.uakron.edu/akronlawreview/vol19/iss1/6