Articles Posted in Litigation

Published on:

Haggling with insurance companies following a car accident is an everyday occurrence for many Georgia motorists. At the end of the day, an insurance policy is a contract, and if the insurer refuses to pay a valid claim, it can be held liable under Georgia law. Specifically, Section 33-4-6 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated states that an auto insurer that rejects a claim “in bad faith” must pay not only for the policyholder’s losses, but also a penalty equal to greater than $5,000 or 50% of the insured party’s total liability.

Stiegel v. USAA Casualty Insurance Company

Could an insurer face liability beyond that provided under Section 33-4-6? According to a recent ruling by a federal judge in Columbus, the answer may be yes. In this case, an accident victim is alleging not just bad faith, but also potential violations of state racketeering laws.

Published on:

On March 27, the Georgia Supreme Court issued a ruling that should benefit all patients who bring medical malpractice claims in the state. The high court unanimously affirmed a lower court’s decision allowing a malpractice plaintiff to amend his complaint after a trial court found it defective. The defect arose from a dispute over the plaintiff’s decision to substitute one expert witness for another.

Fisher v. Gala

The plaintiff received treatment for back pain from a group of neurosurgeons in 2010. According to the plaintiff, the neurosurgeons misdiagnosed him and performed unnecessary surgical procedures, leading to “serious complications and permanent disabilities.” In July 2012, the plaintiff sued the neurosurgeons for negligence.

Published on:

It is often difficult to reconstruct the events of a motor vehicle accident. If the accident resulted in fatalities, the victims are obviously unavailable to testify. Other accounts may not be considered admissible evidence in court. The Georgia Court of Appeals recently addressed such a case.

Maloof v. Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority

In April 2005, a woman boarded an Atlanta para-transit bus in her wheelchair. The bus driver secured the wheelchair to the floor of the bus. Later, as the bus was traveling on the road, the driver suddenly veered into the adjacent lane and had to step on the brakes to avoid a collision with another vehicle. The sudden braking caused the woman to fall out of her wheelchair onto the ground. As a result, the woman’s leg was fractured, and she was rendered immobile for several months until she passed away.