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Innkeeper in Georgia has no legal duty to check on health of guest

Today the Supreme Court of Georgia held, in a 4-3 decision, that notwithstanding a moral obligation to do so, a motel manager has no legal duty to investigate the health of a guest on the request of a family member.
In the case of RASNICK v. KRISHNA HOSPITALITY, INC., a 77 year old man from Texas … Continue Reading

When drunk bought 12 pack, then killed 6, convenience store accountable under Georgia dram shop law

The Georgia Supreme Court issued a landmark decision today, in FLORES et al. v. EXPREZIT! STORES, holding that a convenience store that sold a 12 pack of beer to a visibly intoxicated customer could be accountable for the injuries and deaths that resulted.
The Georgia dram shop statute, OCGA § 51-1-40, provides:
(a) The General Assembly finds … Continue Reading

Pit bull attack nets $700K judgment in Douglas County, GA

Douglas County, Georgia, where I graduated from high school and returned for a few years as a young lawyer, is known as a very conservative venue. However, Douglas Countians do not lack the ability to do the right thing when the facts call for it.
Today’s news includes a report that the State Court of Douglas … Continue Reading

Understanding common problems in medical testimony in injury cases

In personal injury law practice in Atlanta, Georgia, we often deal with treating doctors who don’t want to bother with testifying for their seriously injured patients, and with a small number of doctors who make a good living by consistently testifying for the defense almost without regard to the facts.
Of course, most treating physicians are … Continue Reading

$25 million verdict for paraplegic in Chicago

As a trucking safety trial attorney in Atlanta, Georgia, I’ve worked with quite a number of spinal cord injury survivors, and have had some good results. But not as good as the verdict a Chicago jury awarded last week.
In the Cook County case of Chraca v. Miles, an Illinois DOT vehicle collided with another vehicle … Continue Reading

Isn’t it ironic? Tort reform campaign fizzles in rash of higher verdicts in conservative counties.

As a personal injury attorney in Atlanta, I was initially one of those who feared the worst when the Georgia legislature passed it omnibus tort reform legislation, Senate Bill 3, in 2005.   It was as if the political power structure had done everything it possibly could to kill victims of negligence — and the lawyers … Continue Reading

Employer’s cell phone call to driver employee may support employer’s liability

Yesterday the Georgia Court of Appeals held that a work-related cell phone call or distraction by such a call that a driver chose not to answer may be enough to support liability of the employer, even though the employee was driving to work from home and was not on a special mission for the employer.  … Continue Reading

$2,345,940.17 verdict sets new high in Gordon County, GA

Fri., 3/9/07, Calhoun, GA. 
In a scene reminiscent of the 1982 Paul Newman movie, "The Verdict," the jury after three hours of deliberation Thursday afternoon sent a note to the judge asking if they were limited by the amount the plaintiff asked for.   In closing argument I had asked for a verdict of approximately … Continue Reading

“Super Lawyer” listing still OK in Georgia

Last month there was a news story about the New Jersey Committee on Attorney Advertising, a panel appointed by the Supreme Court of New Jersey ruling that attorney advertisements that tout listings such as the “Super Lawyers” listings violate professional responsibility rules against ads that compare lawyers’ services or create an “unjustified expectation about results.”  … Continue Reading

Claim against GA DOT bounced due to technical flaw in pre-suit notice

Ante litem (before suit) notice is a trapdoor through which many tort claims against government fall to their doom. In Shelnutt v. DOT, decided 3/10/05, it happened again. The plaintiffs, represented by out of state counsel, sent ante litem notice under the State Tort Claims Act to the Commissioner of the Department of … Continue Reading