Court Opinions

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Recent opinions released by Georgia's Appellate courts
State v. Andrade, S15G0866
Supreme Court of Georgia, Criminal Case (2/8/2016, 2/10/2016)
APPEALS: Dismissal, State's Appeal, Notice of Appeal, Jurisdiction
The State timely filed its appeal from the trial court's order granting the defendant's motion to suppress his incriminating statements to law enforcement within 30 days of the entry of the order pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 5-7-1 subsection (a) (4).
In the Matter of Robert B. Eddleman, S16Y0125
Supreme Court of Georgia, Civil Case (2/8/2016, 2/10/2016)
LEGAL PROFESSION: Public Reprimand, Attorney-Client Relationship, Conflict of Interest, Fee Dispute, Professionalism
A divided Supreme Court accepted an attorney's petition for voluntary discipline and imposed a public reprimand for his admitted violations of Georgia Rules of Professional Conduct 1.7 and 5.3.
In the Matter of Stephen B. Taylor, S15Y1766; S15Y1767
Supreme Court of Georgia, Civil Case (2/8/2016, 2/10/2016)
LEGAL PROFESSION: Disbarment
The Supreme Court disbarred an attorney for his violations of Georgia Rules of Professional Conduct 1.3, 1.4, 1.16 and 9.3 arising from his abandonment of two clients' criminal matters.
In the Interest of C. M. B., A15A2070
Georgia Court of Appeals, Criminal Case (1/11/2016, 2/9/2016)
CRIMINAL PRACTICE: Juveniles, Delinquency Petition
In an issue of first impression under the new Juvenile Code, the Court considered how to calculate the 72-hour period under O.C.G.A. § 15-11-521 subsection (a) during which the State must file a delinquency petition following a detention hearing, and concluded that the first day when the juvenile court signed the detention order does not count toward the calculation and intervening Saturdays and Sundays do not count toward the calculation.
Plantation Pipe Line Co. v. Stonewall Ins. Co., A15A1359
Georgia Court of Appeals, Civil Case (11/20/2015, 2/9/2016)
INSURANCE LAW: Notice of Claim, Coverage
Although the trial court properly found that the insured failed to comply with a notice provision in the excess liability insurance policy, such failure did not negate coverage under that policy because the policy did not expressly stipulate that compliance with the notice provision was a condition precedent to coverage and the insurer failed to show that as a matter of law it was prejudiced by the insured's failure to provide reasonably prompt notice.
Springer v. State, A14A0598
Georgia Court of Appeals, Criminal Case (1/12/2016, 2/9/2016)
CRIMINAL PRACTICE: Mutually Exclusive Verdicts, Involuntary Manslaughter, Aggravated Assault, Firearms Offense, Lesser Included Offense, Intent, Jury Charges
Where the evidence authorizes a finding that a defendant's reckless conduct is an included crime in an aggravated assault, verdicts finding him guilty of both of those offenses are not mutually exclusive.
Phillips v. Harmon, A14A0188
Georgia Court of Appeals, Civil Case (12/17/2015, 2/9/2016)
TORTS: Medical Malpractice, Negligence
The duty to preserve relevant evidence arises when litigation is reasonably foreseeable to the party in control of the evidence.
Olvera v. University Sys. of GA's Bd. of Regents, S15G1130
Supreme Court of Georgia, Civil Case (2/1/2016, 2/8/2016)
CONSTITUTIONAL LAW: Sovereign Immunity
Sovereign immunity barred the declaratory judgment action filed by non-U.S. citizen college students, who were beneficiaries of the federal Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program and sought a declaration that they were entitled to in-state tuition at institutions in the University System of Georgia.
Barrow v. Mikell, S15G1168
Supreme Court of Georgia, Civil Case (2/1/2016, 2/8/2016)
APPEALS: Timeliness
The appellant filed a timely petition for judicial review of the denial of his application for a new driver's license after his license was canceled.
GeorgiaCarry.Org Inc. v. James, S15A1901
Supreme Court of Georgia, Civil Case (2/1/2016, 2/8/2016)
JUDGES: Mandamus, Recusal
Because one appellant's claim for costs and attorney fees in a mandamus action was moot and the other appellant lacked standing, it was incumbent upon the trial court to dismiss their claims, and the Supreme Court therefore remanded the case to the trial court with direction that it vacate the grant of summary judgment to the appellee and enter an order of dismissal.
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