Sacramento County paid $10.6 million in the last fiscal year to handle injury claims, an 18 percent increase over the previous year, according to a report presented to supervisors Tuesday morning.
A major reason for the increase was higher legal fees and costs, said Randy Rendig of the George Hills Co., which manages the county's claims program. A claim is an administrative action that precedes the filing of a lawsuit.
Legal fees and costs increased 50 percent to $5 million in the fiscal year ending July 1, 2012.
The Sheriff's Department accounted for the most lawsuits in the county, with 39 percent. Nine of those cases alleged excessive force while another seven cases claimed civil rights violations.
The county paid $4.8 million to resolve claims, a 3 percent increase over the previous year.