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Atlanta Personal Injury Law Blog

Filing a claim for unsafe building injuries

The laws in Georgia and across the U.S. make provisions for those who are injured in unsafe buildings. Whether they slip on a wet floor, trip on a pothole, fall down broken stairs or get struck by a falling object, people have the right to file a claim for compensatory damages.

Such injuries can occur anywhere from a retail store to a neighbor's home. Sometimes, the factors that led to the accident are clear, such as poor lighting and lack of security. However, this isn't always the case. What's important is to show who was negligent and what classification the victim falls under.

Residents may be required to provide shelter in emergencies

In the event of an impending crisis, homes and businesses may make ideal shelters if their owners choose to make them available. If legislation written by a Hawaii lawmaker is passed, they would be required to make them available to all members of the public. However, the lawmaker did say that the intent of the law was to prevent businesses or homeowners from sending people out into the streets during an emergency.

The politician further clarified that in a time of crisis, residents are advised to remain sheltered where they are. The proposed legislation would simply allow the law to match the advice given to those in a dangerous situation. It is likely that the original bill will be revised prior to being enacted into law if passed. Business owners said that they wouldn't mind allowing patrons to stay where they were if something similar to the recent missile alert false alarm took place.

Debt collection begins before you even extend credit

It's probably safe to assume that you opened your Georgia business to make a profit. You provide goods, services or both for a fee, and you expect that your customers and clients will make the required payments. That seems simple enough, but at some point, you find yourself dealing with a customer who failed to pay, paid with a fraudulent credit card or bounced a check.

Legal mechanisms are in place to allow you to collect on such debts, but you need to set up your business -- and the way you extend credit to your customers -- long before a problem arises. Having the appropriate protections in place can make debt collection a smoother process, even if you end up in court.

Wrongful death judgment still unpaid by O.J. Simpson

Georgia residents who have been following the trials and tribulations of O.J. Simpson may be interested to learn that he may be making money off of signing autographs. These allegations come in spite of the fact that he owes more than $70 million for a wrongful death judgment. An attorney for Fred Goldman, whose son was killed in 1994 along with Simpson's ex-wife, reportedly went back to Los Angeles Superior Court on Jan. 30 to ask the judge to order that Simpson hand over any future earnings.

Simpson was found to be not guilty of murdering his ex-wife and Ron Goldman. However, he was later found liable for their deaths by a civil court jury. He was ordered at the time to pay $33.5 million. This amount has more than doubled over the last two decades.

How business owners can prevent slip and fall lawsuits

Property owners in Georgia and around the country can face lawsuits when their visitors suffer injuries that could have been prevented. All reasonable steps are expected to be taken to protect visitors, and premises liability actions could be initiated when injuries are caused by spills that are not cleaned up in a timely manner, poorly maintained steps or walkways or inadequate security arrangements. However, there are steps that business owners can take to make this kind of litigation less likely.

Owners should start by prioritizing safety and thinking about the experiences their customers have. When customers navigate corridors or walkways carrying large items that could obscure their vision, extra precautions should be taken and spills should be seen to as quickly as possible. Examining tables and other pieces of furniture regularly for sharp edges or shaky legs is also a prudent step to take and could prevent slip and fall accidents and lawsuits.

Have you suffered losses due to airport negligence?

Atlanta is home to one of the busiest airports in the world. It takes a lot of work and effort by airport owners and staff to keep things running smoothly and ensure all facilities are safe for those who enter airport property. Unfortunately, accidents happen and people get hurt. If you or a loved one has suffered injuries while on airport property, you may have legal options.

An airport is a place of business. Property owners have a duty to keep the premises free of hazards. If injured while on airport property, a number of people may hold responsibility for your losses. It all depends on the facts of your case.

Company says no problems with shuttle boat before fatal fire

Travelers from Georgia depend on transportation service providers to maintain safety. When something goes wrong, however, passengers might be left to fend for themselves as appeared to be the case when a fire rapidly consumed a casino shuttle boat in the Gulf of Mexico. Although the crew tried to reach land, the flames forced passengers to jump 12 feet into waist-deep water. Fifteen passengers eventually needed hospitalization, and one 42-year-old woman died shortly after the incident. Except for the woman who died, hospital officials reported that the other victims were expected to survive.

The local police chief said that boat had been transporting people to a casino cruise ship when engine problems began. A representative from the company operating the vessel said that the boat had appeared fully operational and the cause of the fire remained unknown.

Nightclub bankruptcy follows wrongful death lawsuit

When people go out on the town in Georgia, they expect venues to maintain security for patrons. This trust fell apart at an out-of-state nightclub called the Cameo when a shooting killed two people and injured another 15. The family of one of the deceased victims has claimed that the nightclub owner provided insufficient security and should pay damages. Their wrongful death lawsuit, however, might have nothing to make a claim upon because the business owner filed for bankruptcy at the end of 2017.

Documents on file with the bankruptcy court indicate that the Cincinnati nightclub owner has less than $50,000 in assets. He owes creditors close to $500,000. Telephone numbers on record for the owner and the nightclub are no longer in service. The family accusing him of wrongful death wanted to recover $25,000, but the family's attorney said that the bankruptcy filing has prompted the family to reconsider the situation.

What can Georgia small businesses do to collect payment?

When you opened your business, you expected to provide goods and services in exchange for money. You understood that you may need to provide your goods or services before receiving all or a portion of the agreed upon payment. What you did not agree to is not getting paid.

Unfortunately, some of your clients or customers may not feel as if they need to uphold their end of the bargain. This means that you might need to pursue payment, which can be an uncomfortable and lengthy process depending on the circumstances.

Civil suit against Keyshia Cole ends with default judgment

Georgia fans of the singer Keyshia Cole or the rapper Birdman may have heard about the incident that occurred at his apartment in September 2014. At the time, Cole and Birdman were in a relationship, and Cole saw a woman, Sabrina Mercadel, at Birdman's apartment. Cole was taken into custody after she attacked the woman and scratched her face.

Mercadel, who had worked for Cash Records for a long time, pressed charges. She also filed a lawsuit against Cole asking for punitive damages for premises liability, negligence, intentional infliction of emotional distress and battery. Cole did not show up for court, so there was a default judgment. Cole has been ordered to pay Mercadel more than $100,000.

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