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Municipal Liability

Georgia Court of Appeals Affirms in Suit Against City for Sewage Backup

In order to successfully assert negligence, a plaintiff must generally prove four elements:  duty, breach of duty, causation, and damages. However, certain evidentiary and negligence doctrines allow a plaintiff, in certain circumscribed situations, to win on a negligence claim without proving all or some of the aforementioned factors. Among these doctrines is res ipsa loquitur,…

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Court of Appeals Affirms in Favor of Plaintiff in Negligence Case Against City of Atlanta

Successfully asserting negligence claims against the State or a municipality can be a difficult task. However, success is possible. In a recent decision, City of Atlanta v. Kovalcik (PDF-embedded link), the Georgia Court of Appeals affirmed the denial of summary judgment in a negligence suit brought against the City of Atlanta for its failure to maintain…

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Court of Appeals Reverses in High-Speed Chase Nuisance Suit

Anyone who routinely watches the evening news is well aware that high-speed police chases are not uncommon. While considerable reporting time is spent discussing these events, one wrinkle that is sometimes overlooked in these discussions is the risk for pedestrians and other motorists occasioned by the decision to give chase. Indeed, given the risk of third-party…

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Georgia Court of Appeals Reverses Trial Court and Holds that Question Regarding City’s Liability for Attack by Off-Duty Police Officer Should go to Jury

As Judge McMillian mentioned at the beginning of his opinion, the Georgia Court of Appeals is very familiar with the facts of Graham v. City of Duluth. This opinion was the third that the court has rendered related to an incident that occurred on February 1, 2008. On that day, an inebriated, off-duty police officer…

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Supreme Court of Georgia to Review Whether Sovereign Immunity Applies in Negligence Suit Against City of Atlanta

It is an ordinary impulse to think that the government, state or federal, should be subject to the same rules of accountability as ordinary businesses and citizens when it comes to injuries associated with the conduct of its agents. However, the common law doctrine of sovereign immunity drastically alters the landscape of liability for government…

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