Month: January 2017

Georgia Judge Dismisses Car Crash Claims Against Snapchat

Given the staggering number of serious and fatal motor vehicle accidents attributed to distracted driving -- particularly those involving the use of a smartphone while behind the wheel -- it was perhaps only a matter of time before the question arose as to whether liability rests with more than just the negligent motorist. Indeed, there has recently been an uptick in the number of lawsuits seeking to hold smartphone manufacturers and companies behind popular apps liable for the injuries suffered and losses sustained in motor vehicle accidents. By way of example, consider a lawsuit filed against the ubiquitous mobile app Snapchat right here in Georgia. For those unfamiliar with Snapchat, it's a messaging app that enables users to send both pictures and videos that essentially self-destruct within seconds of their being viewed by recipients. In the aforementioned Georgia lawsuit, a couple pursued legal action against both Snapchat and a 19-year-old…

Does Bankruptcy Mean I Will Lose My House?

Residents of Georgia who face a debt cycle that has become insurmountable often fret about their options. While bankruptcy is well known as a last resort, many do not understand it fully, leading them to attempt credit solutions that don't necessarily help to stop the cycle because they only consolidate debt. The fact is, when it comes to actual relief from your debts, bankruptcy is the only legal measure that operates consistently, with clear and transparent expectations. Bankruptcy and assets The first thing to understand about how bankruptcy affects assets like your home is to understand that there are many different types. Some are available only to businesses, but there are two that individual consumers can generally avail themselves of. Those are Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. Filing for Chapter 7 This is the image of bankruptcy that many have in their minds, if their image of the process is…

How Much Do You Know About Georgia’s Helmet Law?

When it comes to motorcycle helmet laws, it may surprise people to learn that there is a veritable patchwork of regulations across the 50 states. Indeed, 19 states have what is known as universal helmet laws, meaning all motorcycle operators and passengers must wear a helmet, while 28 states have laws requiring helmets for specific classes of riders. The remaining three states have no laws relating to helmets whatsoever. Interestingly enough, a lawmaker in neighboring Florida recently introduced a measure that, if passed, would make Florida the 20th state with a universal helmet law, effectively repealing a 2000 exemption allowing riders to go helmetless provided they are over 21 and carry a certain level of insurance coverage. While it remains to be seen what kind of reception this measure will receive in the Sunshine State, it naturally raises questions about what the law says here in Georgia. What type of helmet…

Older Drivers May Pose Higher Risk for Georgia Car Wrecks

Did you know that more than 40 million drivers in the United States are age 65 and older? Older drivers pose specific threats when it comes to car wrecks, largely because of physical changes that compromise their driving abilities. Studies show that older adults in Georgia and other states may experience age-related deficiencies in cognition and visual acuity, increasing the likelihood of an auto accident. Older drivers can prevent some of the age-related declines by taking extra steps to stay safe on the road. These preventive measures include regular check-ups at the eye doctor to make sure that their vision is not deteriorating. Older drivers are also encouraged to avoid distractions in the vehicle while driving -- eating, talking on the phone and texting can be particularly troublesome for these drivers. Most elderly drivers are better served to plan their driving route in advance and avoid operating their vehicles in…

Georgia officers could face suit in Taser wrongful death case

Two police officers could face civil litigation after their criminal convictions in the Taser death of a suspect. The officers were both convicted in mid-December, with the jury only requiring 30 minutes to deliver verdicts in connection with this latest in a string of police-induced fatal accidents. Police departments throughout Georgia and the rest of the nation have been facing increasing civil pressure from wrongful death suits, particularly those related to Tasers and stun guns. This is one of the few high-profile criminal cases that have resulted in an actual conviction. In this case, the victim was reportedly shocked more than a dozen times as he was being taken into custody by the two officers. The man, who had fled the scene of an alleged domestic disturbance, lost consciousness shortly after the repeated shocks. Medical experts in the case found that the cause of death was directly related to the…

3 Children Injured in Georgia Highway Car Accident

Three children suffered serious injuries after the vehicle in which they were riding was struck by another vehicle in Jackson County, Georgia, in mid-January. The children -- two teens and an elementary-school student -- were riding with their father on the way to school when they were involved in the injurious car accident. Authorities say that the victims were taken to nearby hospitals, and one was transported via helicopter because of worsening injuries. State officers are currently investigating the collision. Witnesses reported that the white sedan in which the children were riding was struck by a pickup truck while attempting to cross a highway during the trip to school at about 7:30 a.m. on U.S. 441. Another vehicle then struck the pickup truck, which flipped over because of that initial collision. It is not clear exactly who has been deemed at-fault for the crash. A family member of one of…

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