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Most personal injury cases result in compensatory damages being paid to the injured party, but these damages aren’t the only type assigned to those who cause injury through negligence. In some cases, further punishment may be deemed necessary. In these cases, punitive damages may also be applied. 

What’s the Difference Between Punitive and Compensatory Damages?

Compensatory damages are what you’re likely already familiar with, damages that are paid to the injured party as compensation for their injury, which is intended to both penalize the offender and provide the victim with funds often needed to cover medical bills and lost wages. Punitive damages take this a step further and are used in cases where the offending party acted with serious negligence, putting the victim into serious danger with little or no care for their safety. 

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Georgia is somewhat unique in its negligence laws, which could have a big impact on your personal injury case. If you’re not aware of what negligence is, or how it functions in Georgia law, don’t worry – we’re here to clear up the confusion so you can understand the premise of your personal injury case.

What is Negligence?

In Georgia, negligence is when one party owes a duty to another party but doesn’t take the proper precautions or actions to prevent an injury to the other party, and therefore causes some sort of harm. A common example is that when driving, you have a duty to exercise care in ensuring that you don’t get into an accident. Driving through a red light would be a breach of that duty, as you would violating your duty to avoid an accident. Establishing negligence in a personal injury case is critical to proving liability.

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Whether you’re a skydiver or a snowboarder, your favorite physical activities likely involve some sort of risk. We try to be careful and knowledgeable of these risks to avoid any harm to ourselves or others, but in a case of personal injury, knowledge of those risks could prevent you from recovering damages.

How Does the Assumption of Risk work?

The assumption of risk is a legal defense used by defendants in personal injury cases. It argues that you are knowledgeable and accepting of the risks involved in whatever activity you are participating in. You’ve likely already experienced an agreement to an assumption of risk – if you’ve ever gone skiing, skydiving, or any other number of physical activities, one of the waivers you signed beforehand may have been a contract specifying that you have accepted the assumption of risk for that activity. This means that should you be injured, it is assumed that you accepted the risk involved, and thus are liable for your injuries. 

Estate-Planning-8-1-1-300x200The Open Records Act, otherwise known as the Georgia Sunshine Law, provides access to public records of government bodies. This includes basically any record that is held by a public agency, including documents, computer data, photographs, and video. The Open Records Act and other similar state laws are derived from the Freedom of Information Act, which was designed to increase transparency and confidence in public agencies by allowing citizens to identify issues in public offices. Laws like this have now been considered a crucial component in how our government works, allowing for informed participation in the democratic process.

Unless specifically made exempt, all public records should be accessible to you, or any other citizen. You also do not need to provide any reason for accessing the information. If your request is denied, the organization must provide a citation of the law that prohibits them from giving you the documents.

Some organizations may require you to pay fees to accommodate your request, which has been a cause of concern. In the past, fees as high as 660 million dollars have been requested to access documents through the Freedom of Information Act, effectively preventing access to what is supposed to be public information. 

Depositphotos_21861685_m-2015-300x200Jury service in Georgia is both a legal obligation and civic responsibility, but the process itself is not well understood by those outside the court system. How do you know if you’ve been selected? Who is eligible? And if you are selected, what happens next?

Attorney Robin Frazer Clark, P.C. is an experienced trial lawyer who has presented civil (non-criminal) cases to several juries. In this blog, we go over what you can expect once you’ve been chosen to serve on a jury in a civil matter such as a personal injury, medical malpractice, or wrongful death case.

Who Can Be a Juror in Georgia?

christopher-burns-8KfCR12oeUM-unsplash-300x200If a person who is working on a Georgia construction site is injured by some other person’s negligence during the course and scope of their job, the injured person has several options. First, the injured worker would look to the company he works for workers’ compensation. If that employer has more than 3 employees, which is usually the case in construction, that employer is required to have workers’ compensation insurance.

Then, the injured worker may have other causes of action against other companies who were also present at the construction site and whose negligence may have caused the injury. This is why an injured worker should hire a plaintiff’s personal injury lawyer quickly after the injury. A good lawyer will be able to identify these other causes of action, including simple negligence actions against at-fault employees who are employed by a different company than the injured worker’s company, and even possibly products liability or premises liability actions against third parties. 

Should You File a Lawsuit?

insung-yoon-w2JtIQQXoRU-unsplash-300x200Just when everyone thought the worst of the COVID-19 pandemic was behind us, the Delta variant swept through the country and became the dominant strain in a matter of weeks. Plaintiffs in personal injury cases who thought they would finally get their proper day in court are now facing the prospects of more delays. 

Our team knows that nobody is more frustrated than personal injury victims and their families. Justice delayed, as it is often said, is justice denied. When you choose Attorney Robin Clark and the team to take your personal injury case to trial, we will fight for you until the end. 

Zoom Mediations—a Worthy Alternative?

cytonn-photography-GJao3ZTX9gU-unsplash-1-300x200A personal injury lawsuit is a legal tool that can be used to obtain damages after someone (the plaintiff) is physically, mentally, or emotionally injured due to the intentional acts or negligence of someone else. If, unfortunately, the personal injury victim dies as a result of someone else’s actions, a family member of the deceased may be entitled to bring a wrongful death lawsuit. 

Someone in Georgia is said to have suffered a wrongful death if he or she died due to a crime, negligence, or “property” that has been “defectively manufactured.” The defective property does not have to have been negligently manufactured in order for a wrongful death claim to be brought.

What Kind of Damages Can a Wrongful Death Lawsuit Produce?

michael-longmire-lhltMGdohc8-unsplash-300x216After a serious car accident–one that involves damage to your car and the other person’s car, not to mention physical injuries–you’re in a precarious position. Between rental cars, medical bills, and lost wages, finances can quickly become a big problem. Insurance companies understand the situation you’re in, and they generally have no hesitation in using that to their advantage. 

It’s certainly not fair, but it’s the reality for victims of car accidents who need compensation. Being prepared for various stunts occasionally attempted by auto insurance companies can help you prepare for the upcoming process and protect your claim. 

  1. Offering a lowball figure to make the claim go away. 

joe-caione-qO-PIF84Vxg-unsplash-300x200Despite the enormous popularity of dogs—nearly two-thirds of Americans live in a household with one or more domesticated canines—these animals are still capable of inflicting serious injuries. And, unfortunately, dog bites are more common than many people think, as 800,000 people receive medical attention for dog bites each year in the U.S. In addition to bites, dogs can sometimes bump into people and cause falls, which often result in injuries. If you are wondering about the process in Georgia for recovering money after a dog bite or attack, please keep reading to gain some important information.  

Three Elements to Prove

Victims of a dog bite or attack in Georgia have to satisfy all three elements of the state’s dog bite statute in order to collect damages. Victims, or a victim’s family, must show that: 

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