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Bringing the Right Experience and Legal Insight to Georgia

As a trial attorney specializing in personal injury cases, I have had the opportunity to handle various legal matters, including dog bite cases. Throughout my career, I have closely followed the evolution of dog bite case law in the state of Georgia. In this article, I will share insights and perspectives on the key aspects of dog bite litigation, examining relevant statutes, court decisions, and the responsibilities of dog owners. By understanding the intricacies of this area of law, we can shed light on the legal landscape surrounding dog bites and promote safer communities for both humans and animals.

The Statutory Framework

Dog bite cases in Georgia are primarily governed by statutory law. Under Georgia Code Section 51-2-7, dog owners are held liable for injuries caused by their dogs if they had prior knowledge of the dog’s vicious propensity. This statute follows the “one-bite” rule, which means that an owner may escape liability for the first incident, but subsequent incidents could expose them to legal consequences.


An image depicting a young adult student aiming a handgun at the camera and standing in front of a concrete wall, dark dramatic lighting spotlighting the weapon. His face is obscured by a hooded sweatshirt. Representing gun violence, gun control, and school shootings or universities, etc. Horizontal with copy space.

A claim of this type would require meticulously gathering of all relevant details about the incident, including witness statements, police reports, past crime data and any available video evidence. Then, I would examine the circumstances leading up to the shooting, the security measures in place, and any negligence or failure on the part of the property owner.

  1. Establishing Liability: To build a strong case, it would be crucial to determine who is legally responsible for the wrongful death. This could involve assessing the property owner’s duty of care to maintain a safe environment, any breaches of that duty, and whether they could have reasonably prevented the shooting. It is also important to determine if the premises was owned by individual(s) or a corporate entity.

Atlanta from North Avenue bridge

Premises liability is an area of law that holds property owners responsible for injuries that occur on their premises. In Georgia, premises liability cases can encompass a wide range of incidents, including instances of sexual assault or rape that occur on someone else’s property. As a Georgia lawyer specializing in personal injury law, I would like to examine the legal aspects and considerations surrounding premises liability in a rape claim in Georgia.

Understanding Premises Liability in Georgia:

Under Georgia law, property owners owe a duty of care to individuals who lawfully enter their premises. This duty requires property owners to maintain reasonably safe conditions, warn visitors of any known dangers, and take appropriate steps to rectify any hazards that could foreseeably cause harm. When these duties are breached, and a visitor sustains injuries, the property owner may be held liable for damages.

hammer-to-fall-1223606-300x199As a Georgia medical malpractice and wrongful death attorney, I understand the importance of gathering strong evidence to support a claim. Building a solid case requires comprehensive documentation and proof that negligence or wrongful actions led to harm or injury. Here are some important pieces of evidence that you should consider for your claim:

  1. Medical Records: Obtain and review all relevant medical records, including hospital charts, doctor’s notes, test results, and treatment plans. These records provide crucial information about the standard of care provided and any deviations from it
  2. Expert Opinions: Consult with qualified medical experts who can review the case and provide their professional opinion on the standard of care. Their expert testimony can help establish whether the healthcare provider’s actions or omissions fell below the accepted standard and directly caused the injury.

As a Georgia accident lawyer, I understand the critical importance of evidence in establishing liability and seeking justice for victims involved in car accidents. In a car crash trial, evidence plays a pivotal role in determining the sequence of events, identifying responsible parties, and evaluating the extent of damages. In this article, I will explore the various types of evidence commonly presented in car crash trials, highlighting their significance and how they contribute to the overall strength of a case.

  1. Eyewitness Testimony:

Eyewitness testimony is one of the most powerful forms of evidence in a car crash trial. Eyewitnesses provide firsthand accounts of the accident, offering crucial details regarding the events leading up to the collision, the actions of the drivers involved, and other pertinent factors. Their statements can help establish fault and shed light on any negligent or reckless behavior exhibited by either party. The credibility and reliability of eyewitness testimony are usually evaluated based on factors such as visibility, proximity to the accident, and their ability to recall accurate details.

blood-glucose-measure-diabetes-check-1195289-300x225My client was a known diabetic when she came to treat at an urgent care facility in Georgia. She clearly presented with symptoms (nausea, vomiting, diarrhea for 4 days, fatigued, lightheaded, weak, short of breath and reported unintentional weight loss, etc.) that could be the result of hyperglycemia and/or diabetic ketoacidosis. Unfortunately, the attending advanced practice registered nurse failed to perform a proper differential diagnosis.

In particular, the nurse failed to: 1) order glucose testing based on patient presentation, medical history and available urinalysis results; 2) recognize and diagnose symptoms of diabetic ketoacidosis, a life-threatening medical complication of diabetes mellitus; and 3) provide appropriate medical care including intravenous insulin and/or referral to higher level of care including emergency department or hospital admission.  If the nurse had followed proper diabetic protocol and differential diagnosis, then my client would be alive today.

The nurse presumed the patient was dehydrated due to her illness and provided intravenous fluid replacement.  She later released my client without further diagnostic work up, treatment or referral to a higher level of care. Therefore, the resulting breaches in the standard of care prevented our client from receiving appropriate assessment and care for her condition which would have included management of hyperglycemia in the clinic or referral to a higher level of care, such as emergency room or hospital admission via EMS.  Combined, the failure to diagnose diabetic ketoacidosis caused a critical delay of care resulting in the untimely death of my client. Unfortunately, this breach of the standard of care proximately caused the death of my client  – simply put, the nurse should have sent my client to the ICU for an insulin drip.
I recently settled another dog bite attack against an owner of an aggressive dog.  The dog owner (and dog) resided in The Country Club of the South – an upscale country club gated community in Johns Creek, Georgia.  My client is a UPS driver who had delivered packages to defendant’s home approximately 3-4 times prior to the attack- on these occasions; he did not see any dog or notice any dog warning signs on the property.  As with other dog bite cases, I mailed out letters to defendant’s surrounding neighbors to solicit information and instances of prior aggressive behavior from defendant’s dog prior to filing a lawsuit.

The Attack:  My client brought several packages up the driveway to defendant’s front door.  The front door had a glass window and my client did not need to press the doorbell as he could see the owner coming to the door. The defendant opened her door and two unleashed (violation of leash law) dogs came out and ran circles around my client.  Without provocation, the big dog (a German shepherd mix) jumped on my client and bit him several times on the arm and ankle leaving bloody puncture marks.  At the time of settlement, there were several small permanent scars on my client’s ankle.

Fulton County Animal Control:  Personnel from the County investigated the attack and wrote up a report.  Among other citations, the owner was cited for allowing her dogs to run at large while not under constraint and control of a competent person; violations under Fulton County and Johns Creek ordinances.  Typically, the city has the same dog ordinances as the county.

If you are reading this blog post, then it is probably because you received a letter from the Georgia Insolvency Pool regarding your bodily injury claim as a result of a car accident or workers’ compensation accident. This blog will focus on the car accident injury claim.  Basically, the insurance company for the at-fault driver which is responsible for handling your injury claim is in bankruptcy or receivership as it no longer has enough assets (money) to pay for your injury claim.  Covered claims under the Georgia Insolvency Pool generally requires that the insured (at-fault motorist) be a resident of Georgia at the time of the car wreck when either the insured or third-party claimant (injured innocent victim) was a resident of Georgia at the time of the automobile collision.

Typically, the Georgia Insolvency Pool (“Pool”) will request an affidavit from you that discloses contact and policy information regarding any other possible automobile insurance policy that could cover your injury claim (e.g. uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage on your own car policy) from the car crash besides the fault motorist’s insurer which is now insolvent.

The reason for that is that the Georgia Insolvency Pool is trying to limit its exposure (save money) to pay you for the claim.  If you have other coverage besides the at fault motorist’s insurer, then that other coverage becomes primary (pays first) and Georgia Insolvency coverage becomes secondary (pays second).   Under O.C.G.A. 33-36-14, your own insurance coverage (if applicable and existing – typically uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage under your own auto policy) must exhaust (pay out) its limits prior to any payment of your claim by the Georgia Insolvency Pool.  Moreover, the Pool gets credit for whatever the primary insurer pays to you.  And, your uninsured motorist bodily injury (“UMBI”) carrier may be able to recover (rare) what it paid to you from the assets of the insolvent insurance company.

Recently, I settled a dog bite claim for $50,000.00 on behalf of a deserving client after filing suit in State Court of DeKalb County. The attack occurred in Waterford neighborhood which is located in Dunwoody – a suburb of Atlanta. The neighborhood was built back in the 1970s and has over several hundred homes. I consider it to be a large neighborhood. And, a lot of the neighbors own dogs – the majority of which are competent and responsible dog owners.

Our dog bite attack occurred back in the fall of 2018 and involved an unleashed grey/white male pit bull/Great Dane mix that had escaped through an open gate in the owner’s backyard. The dog immediately ran down toward the street and my client who at the time was walking her leashed two small dogs on the sidewalk. My client saw the pit bull and immediately picked up her smaller dog and attempted to walk away. However, the pit bull continued to circle her and my client was constantly moving in a circle to keep an eye on the pit. In the process of attempting to protect herself, she fell down upon the roadway. She was not sure if the pit had knocked her down or if she fell of her own accord onto her shoulder. When she attempted to get back on her feet off the ground, the pit started to bite her ankle when she was at her most vulnerable. The pit bit holes through her pant leg and socks and caused several dog puncture bite wounds to her ankle. My client was screaming from the pain but was able to get on her feet when the pit started to come back toward her to commence another attack.

My client was able pull out her pepper spray and sprayed the pit in the face which caused the pit to run back inside the fence of his owner. A fellow neighbor witnessed the attack and was able to close the fence door. Several drivers had stopped their cars in the roadway and witnessed the event – although, none got out to help. Allegedly, the owner of the pit was not home at the time of the attack and the pit had no previous history of attacks. DeKalb County Animal Services ordered that the pit be quarantined at home. Until there was confirmation of rabies vaccination for the pit, my client was on pins and needles.

Governor Kemp’s order for all Georgia residents to stay at home went into effect on April 3, 2020 which effectively allows Georgia residents to get outside for exercise, shop for groceries, seek medical help and to keep going to work at jobs deemed “essential.”  Thus, the only motorists allowed on Georgia roads should be grocery shoppers, essential workers and persons seeking medical treatment.   As I look out my window from the office, I still see many motorists on Piedmont Road in Atlanta; however, daily normal traffic of approximately 35-40K+ cars on Piedmont Road has greatly reduced since enactment of the aforementioned order.

As there are motorists on the roads in Georgia, the possibly exists that some motorists may be involved in car collisions.  As a result of those car collision, drivers and passengers may be injured and require treatment.  But, where should persons as a result of car collisions treat in the Covid age?  I have heard that emergency rooms across Atlanta are accepting patients with life/death situations; whether or not injured motorists whose injuries do not rise to that level are being accepted at those hospitals is unknown.  Of course, the reality is that wait times at hospitals are increasing.

If a person injured as the result of a car wreck is unable to treat at the hospital, then there are other options for treatment including but not limited to, urgent care centers, pain management physicians, chiropractors, orthopedists and similar health care providers.  It is best to do your homework and Google or call different providers to see hours/times/availability to best care for your injuries.

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