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File a Damage Claim

If you believe your car was damaged as a result of hazardous road conditions, such as potholes, you may be able to receive reimbursement from the owner of the road [city, county, or state]. Contact the appropriate city, county or the state and file a damage claim. Claims filed with Wayne County are decided on a case-by-case basis.

Please be advised that under governmental immunity laws, you must show that Wayne County failed to maintain the actual road in reasonable repair to prove a road defect claim. You also must show that Wayne County knew of the condition and had an opportunity to repair it, or that the condition existed for more than 30 days.

If you wish to file a claim for damages sustained by your vehicle along a roadway, you'll want to follow the following procedures.

Information & Requirements
  • Date of accident
  • Exact time of accident [as close as possible]
  • Exact location of accident [for example: Right lane of southbound Greenfield, approx. 1/4 mile south of Warren]
  • Estimate or receipt for any vehicle repair needed as a result of damage
  • Photograph of damage and/or road problem is also helpful

Determine the jurisdiction of the road

All freeways, although maintained by the County, are State roads, so the Michigan Department of Transportation is liable for any damage claims.

This also pertains to the following State Trunkline Roads in Wayne County: Woodward, Gratiot, Grand River, Michigan Ave., Telegraph, Fort Street, Ford Road, Ann Arbor Road and Van Dyke.

To file a claim from pothole damage along any of the above roads, call MDOT: (877) 641-3913, or download the Michigan Department of Transportation website for more information and complete instructions.

MDOT Damage Claim Information

Most other major "mile" roads are the responsibility of the County, although some may be the responsibility of whichever city you live in. If you don't know, just call the County's Claim office at (313) 224-7766, and they'll tell you.

You can also download the Wayne County Damage Claim Form and return it by mail or in person to:

Wayne County Risk Management - Claims Division
500 Griswold, 20th Floor
Detroit, Michigan 48226

You can view the Injury, Property Damage, and Vehicle Damage Claim forms on the Risk Management page.