Client Alerts

Workers’ Compensation Expedited Dispute Resolution
February 15, 2012
The Georgia State Board of Workers’ Compensation has implemented a new policy for the “Expedited Resolution of Issues.” We have included the complete text of the policy as released by the State Board at the end of this alert.

Essentially, this policy provides claimant’s attorneys with the opportunity to schedule a conference call with an administrative law judge (ALJ) for the purpose of discussing an issue raised at the request of the claimant’s attorney. Read More
Failure to Award Attorney’s Fees Following Defense Verdict After Defense “Offer of Settlement” Affirmed by Court of Appeals
February 9, 2012
On December 1, 2011, the Georgia Court of Appeals affirmed a ruling by a local trial court denying attorney’s fees to defendants following a defense verdict, despite the defendant making an “offer of settlement” pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 9-11-68. See Great West Ca. Co. v. Bloomfield, Case No. A11A1454 (Ga. Ct. App., Dec. 1, 2011). In so finding, the Court held a $25,000 pre-trial offer of settlement was not made in “good faith” and, therefore, held it could deny an award of attorney’s fees under the statute. Read More
McRae v. Arby's
February 8, 2012
On December 1, 2011, the Georgia Court of Appeals issued an opinion in McRae v. Arby’s placing some significant restrictions on ex parte communications by the employer and employer’s counsel with the employee’s treating physician.

Click Here to view the opinion. Read More
Courts Now Require Attorneys to Sign Garnishment Answers
February 8, 2012
As you may know, on September 12, 2011, the Georgia Supreme Court adopted Advisory Opinion No. 2010-1 finding that a non-lawyer may not file an Answer in a garnishment action for anyone other than himself. The opinion reasoned that a non-lawyer filing such an Answer was engaged in the unlicensed practice of law. As a result, court clerks are rejecting and returning garnishment answers that do not contain an attorney’s signature and bar number. Read More
Georgia Supreme Court Holds Unanticipated Damages to Other Property Resulting from Faulty Workmanship Constitute a Covered Occurrence" Under CGL Policies"
February 8, 2012
Last week the Georgia Supreme Court decided a case addressing the definition of “occurrence” in a CGL policy. Click here for a copy of the decision of American Empire Surplus Lines Ins. Co. v. Hathaway Development Co. Until this decision, Georgia appellate and federal courts have been unclear on the interpretation of “occurrence” in construction defect cases. Federal courts have decided that faulty workmanship is an intended act, even though the damages may not have been intended or expected, and therefore such faulty workmanship is not an “occurrence.” Read More
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