Court Opinions

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Recent opinions released by Georgia's Appellate courts
Patterson et al. v. Kevon, LLC, A17A0399
Georgia Court of Appeals, Civil Case (6/30/2017, 8/2/2017)
CIVIL PRACTICE:
Catering company was entitled to summary judgment in plaintiffs' suit alleging that the food served at a wedding rehearsal dinner made them sick because plaintiffs failed to put forth evidence demonstrating that the only reasonable hypothesis for why they became ill was due to acts or omissions of defendant, to the exclusion of all other reasonable theories.
Davis v. The State, s17a1152
Supreme Court of Georgia, Criminal Case (6/30/2017, 8/1/2017)
CRIMINAL PRACTICE:
The trial court erred in denying defendant's motion to withdraw his guilty plea to felony murder because defendant was represented by the same counsel at both his guilty plea hearing and on his motion to withdraw guilty plea and he could not have raised a claim of ineffective assistance at that time so the earliest practicable moment he could have properly raised a claim of ineffective assistance was with new counsel on appeal. 
Amayo v. Amayo, s17f0991
Supreme Court of Georgia, Civil Case (6/30/2017, 8/1/2017)
ATTORNEYS FEES:
In parties' divorce dispute, the trial court failed to make the required findings of fact to support the award of attorney fees under O.C.G.A.  § 9-15-14; accordingly, the Court vacated the $1,080 award of attorney fees and remanded the case for further findings. 
MANCUSO v. TDGA, LLC, et al., s17a0803
Supreme Court of Georgia, Civil Case (6/30/2017, 8/1/2017)
REAL PROPERTY:
The trial court did not err in quieting title to certain real property in favor of a tax sale purchaser because, contrary to appellant's contention, purchaser complied with the notice requirements listed in O.C.G.A. § 48-4-45 subsection (a) before it foreclosed on appellant's right to redeem. 
Kenneth Phillips et al. v. Owners Insurance Company, A17A0251
Georgia Court of Appeals, Civil Case (6/29/2017, 7/31/2017)
TORTS:
The Court declined plaintiffs' request for the Court to recognize an independent tort of negligent third-party spoliation of evidence under Georgia law and affirmed the trial court's grant of summary judgment to insurer on plaintiffs' claim for third-party spoliation of evidence.
In The Interest Of C. W., a child., A17A0084
Georgia Court of Appeals, Criminal Case (6/28/2017, 7/31/2017)
CRIMINAL PRACTICE:
The evidence did not demand a finding contrary to the juvenile court's ruling that State failed to show that the 16-year-old defendant voluntarily consented to a blood test and the Court, therefore, affirmed the grant of defendant's motion to suppress the results of that test in his trial for driving under the influence of alcohol, underage possession of alcohol, reckless driving and speeding.
Law et al. v. Chemtall, Inc., A17A0321
Georgia Court of Appeals, Civil Case (6/28/2017, 7/31/2017)
TORTS:
The trial court properly granted defendant's motion for a directed verdict in plaintiffs' negligence suit arising after plaintiff suffered severe chemical burns while working as a contractor at defendant's chemical plant because plaintiff had full knowledge of the potential danger. 
Mitchell v. The State, S17A0459
Supreme Court of Georgia, Criminal Case (6/26/2017, 7/28/2017)
CRIMINAL PRACTICE:
In defendant's trial for DUI and failure to maintain lane, the trial court erred in holding that the Romberg field sobriety test was not a scientific test requiring that a foundation be laid under Harper v. State, 249 Ga. 519 (1982).
Martin v. Ledbetter et al., A17A0418
Georgia Court of Appeals, Civil Case (6/29/2017, 7/28/2017)
TORTS:
Defendants were entitled to summary judgment in plaintiffs' suit alleging that defendants, who were government building inspectors, negligently conducted inspections of work that had been performed on their water heater's gas exhaust ventilation system and that, as a result of such negligence, their children were exposed to high levels of carbon monoxide because plaintiffs failed to show that defendants had a duty to inspect the exhaust ventilation system.
Donastorg v. Rainbow USA, Inc., A17A0613
Georgia Court of Appeals, Civil Case (6/29/2017, 7/28/2017)
TORTS:
The trial court erred in granting defendant's motion for summary judgment in plaintiff's premises liability action to recover monetary damages for injuries she allegedly received after stepping on an anti-theft sensor pin while shopping in defendant's clothing store because genuine issues of material fact remained as to defendant's constructive knowledge of the hazard such that the grant of summary judgment in its favor was improper.
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