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Georgia Legal Issues Blog

Motorcycle accidents: Driver's failure to yield injures biker

Bikers in Georgia risk their lives whenever they take to the roads. Although advanced technology allows automobile manufacturers to improve vehicle safety with every new model that is introduced to the market, motorcycles remain extremely dangerous. Bikers have no protection apart from helmets and protective riding gear, hence the fact that many motorcycle accidents result in catastrophic or fatal injuries to the riders.

Following a two-vehicle accident that occurred in Cherokee County on a recent Tuesday, a motorcycle rider was rushed to the hospital with serious injuries. According to the county's sheriff's office, a vehicle with a 26-year-old driver was northbound on the highway, and a 50-year-old Daytona resident was heading south on a motorcycle. Reportedly, the vehicle driver turned without yielding for the biker.

Nursing home sexual abuse leads to personal injury claim

Georgia and other states are confronting an increasing concern over the sexual abuse of nursing home residents. Advocates of long-term care residents recently announced that the problem requires institutions to set up procedures and safeguards for promptly reporting suspected abuse. A resident who is abused by a nursing home employee will have a personal injury claim for damages suffered.

If the abused resident dies as a result of the institutional neglect associated with the sexual abuse, the family of that resident will have a wrongful death claim for damages. The National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care recently conducted a seminar on the subject and at the same time released a related issue brief. There was great interest expressed in the subject, according to the executive director for the group.

Holiday weekend leaves 18 fatalities from motor vehicle accidents

The record-books were not quite closed on Monday evening, Sept. 3, but it was already apparent that Georgia had a bad weekend on the roadways. Authorities like to say that they have a goal of no injuries and no fatalities from motor vehicle accidents on a holiday weekend. With one million reported persons coming into the state for the holiday, that was a tough order to fill this year.

In fact, the Georgia Highway Patrol reported 18 traffic fatalities throughout the state by 6 p.m. on Monday, leaving another six hours for those figures to increase. There were scores more of injuries not involving death from vehicular accidents. All in all, it was not a good statistic for this year's law enforcement efforts. Of course, law enforcement can only do so much.

Business litigation often concerns disputed licensing agreements

In Georgia and elsewhere, disputes between businesses are a regular way of life. The conflicts have a wide range and involve many different factual scenarios. Sometimes, the bitterness of business litigation can create bad perceptions about each other between the battling entities. On the other hand, some business conflicts are so commonplace that the companies may suppress their annoyance and go on to do even more business together in the future.

That is one lesson learned from the recent settlement of a court action between Reebok and CrossFit about the payment of royalties pursuant to a licensing agreement. The parties' had a 10-year partnership or joint venture agreement in which Cross Fit gave Reebok a license to sell fitness apparel and footwear products with the CrossFit trademark. As is generally provided in such agreements, Reebok agreed to pay royalties on its net sales to CrossFit, which is also a standard type of promise.

Woman suffers critical personal injury, hit while pumping gas

There are many ways that the authorities in Georgia try to protect the public against serious injuries and death caused by negligent vehicle operators. One of the strongest deterrent methods is the private tort system, which provides a personal injury claim for monetary damages to injured victims. The claim exists against one or more wrongdoers who caused the accident. With respect to deceased victims, their estate is entitled to bring a wrongful death action for monetary damages against the negligent driver and all others who may be at fault in causing the damages.

A particularly gruesome accident occurred on the premises of a gas station in DeKalb County recently. A grandmother was fueling her gas tank with her four grandchildren sitting inside her SUV. A car sped wildly into the station, crashed into a pickup truck that then slammed into an SUV that hit and crushed the 61-year-old victim, pinning her between her car and the gas pump.

Criminal defense: Stun gun for 87-year-old picking dandelions

It is not well-known in Georgia that dandelion salad is a favorite dish of natives of certain foreign countries. For an 87-year-old Chatsworth woman who was naturalized as a U.S. Citizen over 15 years ago, going into a neighboring field to dig up dandelions was a perfectly natural and nonthreatening activity. For police called to the scene, it was a threatening confrontation that justified using a stun gun on the woman and then arresting her for  obstruction of an officer and misdemeanor criminal trespass, charges that will require a criminal defense.

Apparently, a worker at a nearby Boys and Girls Club got paranoid about a nearly 90-year-old woman picking dandelions with a kitchen knife -- concerned enough to call the police. The caller placed the call as a 911 emergency. The caller noted that the old woman was old, could not get around well and seemed to be cutting vegetation with a knife.

Riding tips for Georgia motorcyclists

Dalton motorcycle owners love to ride their big two-wheelers, especially during the warmer months. While it's undeniable that riding a motorcycle has inherent risks that driving a car does not, there's no substitute for the feeling of freedom a motorcycle provides.

While the risks are real, it should be noted that according to last year's report by the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA), an an overall decline of 5.6 percent in fatal motorcycle collisions for 2017 was predicted. Regardless, the same report acknowledges that bikers are still significantly overrepresented in proportion to all traffic deaths in the United States.

Damages claim from car accidents includes lost earning capacity

Georgia and other states provide for monetary damages to the estate of a person who was killed in a vehicular accident by the negligence of another party. Such a claim is called a wrongful death claim. The wrongful death statute in every state provides a list of damages that are recoverable from death relating to car accidents. Often, the biggest element of damages that is recovered in a wrongful death claim is the decedent's lost earnings and earning capacity.

A recent deadly accident in Lowndes County, Georgia, will likely put the foregoing principles to work for the estate of a deceased 40-year-old man. The tragic event occurred when the victim was operating his vehicle north on Loch Laurel Road when approaching the intersection to Carroll Ulmer Road. While driving with the right-of-way through the intersection, another operator who was traveling east on Carroll Ulmer reportedly failed to stop for a stop sign and crashed into the side of the victim's vehicle.

Business litigation pits Papa John's founder against directors

Companies that operate in Georgia often encounter potential or actual business disputes with other companies or internally within the business itself. When a company's founder or CEO is known to be both eccentric and highly controversial in his public statements, business litigation between that individual and his or her own company may tend to break out at some point. Today's culture of mass communications dictates that sensitivity and discretion must be used lest there be an instant public reaction to a CEO's ill-chosen, inappropriate comments.  

Witness the case of Uber's founder and CEO who was ousted for controversial actions within the company and for public statements or events characterized as bizarre and/or bullying in nature. The chairman and founder of Papa John's pizza chain has a similar reputation for making questionable public statements and for drawing the wrath of certain public interest organizations. John Schnatter discovered that such public commentary can go too far when he made comments in a telephone conference that were later highlighted in a Forbes article.

Deadly crash with log truck is latest of Georgia truck accidents

Accidents involving trucks occur in Georgia on a nearly daily basis. Fortunately, they do not all result in personal injury or death. However, when a smaller vehicle crashes head-on into a large semitrailer, severe injury and loss of life are more probable than not. In addition, the idea that truck drivers are the cause of most truck accidents is also a fallacy that does not hold up to statistical review.

For example, a recent accident in Georgia occurred on Wednesday morning, July 25, in Columbia County on the bridge that connects that county with Lincoln County. A car smashed into a logging truck head-on, resulting in the death of one person. Details remain limited at this time so that it is not clearly known if the car driver or a passenger in the car was the deceased person. For that matter, it is not known if there were any injuries other than the decedent.

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