Confidential Settlement for Premises Liability Accident
Confidential Settlement for Motorcycle Wreck
$705,000 Verdict in Commission Dispute Case
Confidential Settlement in Golf Cart Injury
$1.9 Million Recovered in Pay Dispute
Confidential Settlement For Atlanta Chiropractic Malpractice
Confidential Settlement in Commission Pay Dispute
Confidential Settlement In Dental Malpractice Case
$3.25 Million For Alleged Fraud in Sale of Business
$5.5 Million Medical Malpractice Verdict
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Otherwise healthy patients who undergo dental implants are at risk of ending up having heart surgery. As evidenced by the recent situation involving an oral surgeon who performed a number of procedures in his practice including installing implants which became infected, dental implant centers who regularly install “all on 4” dental implants in North Atlanta neighborhoods such as Alpharetta and Roswell, Georgia, must comply with sterilization protocol or risk liability for injures caused by, among other things, non-sterile water.

According to reports, the board of dentistry has  issued a licensure suspension and other penalties to a dentist after one of his patients died and 14 others suffered serious heart infections. At least fifteen patients who were treated at the dental office suffered from bacterial endocarditis. Twelve of the patients required heart surgery and one died, according to the release by the board of dentistry. Interestingly, while it is a dentist that did not follow proper infection protocol, the injuries sustained by the dental patients was not limited to the mouth, but rather, in the most serious of cases, affected the heart.

A continued failure to follow infection protocols exposes patients to a whole host of risks due to infection. This is especially true when dental implant centers install implants upon which dentures are mounted, or as the are commonly referred to in the industry as “all on 4 dentures.” They are called this because the dentures are mounted on 4 dental implants that are installed in the lower jaw for stability. The most serious risk to patients who are treated by dental implant centers of contracting the serious heart infection,” Repeated violations of infection control practices can result in many serious conditions.
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As a lawyer in Atlanta, Georgia who specializes in Dental Malpractice Injuries, I receive lots of calls from Georgia patients who have been severely injured by Atlanta dentists. The calls are many, and at the outset, I must point out, that not every injury in the dental chair is caused by dental malpractice. In other words, some people are injured as a the result of a dental procedures and the injury is something that can happen absent malpractice. It is part of my job, as a lawyer evaluating dental injuries, to identify those types of injuries (dental injuries that occur through no fault of the dentist) and eliminate those cases from consideration. After all, it is the goal of every good lawyer to steadfastly pursue the good cases to trial (if that’s what it takes) and not expend valuable resources and time (from the lawyer, law firm, and potential client who is dragged into litigation when ultimately the case has no merit) on a case that falters due to a lack of provable malpractice.

One such injury that is almost always caused by dental malpractice is something called trigeminal neuralgia (TN), which is sometimes known as “the suicide disease.” It is brought on when the brain’s trigeminal nerve, which carries sensation from the brain to the face, is disrupted, sending unfounded but very powerful pain signals to the brain. The trigeminal nerve breaks off into the lingual nerve and the inferior alveolar nerve and these two nerves are involved in the majority of dental nerve injury trigeminal nerve injuries. Typical dental procedures that cause these types of injuries from malpractice are dental implants placed in the lower jaw, root canals of lower molars and extractions of lower back molars.

Researchers estimate that around five in 100,000 people suffer from trigeminal neuralgia, but it is notoriously difficult to diagnose since the symptoms can overlap with other conditions and accurately describing the pain can be challenging for patients.  One woman suffering from trigeminal neuralgia said that the pain might come on while she brushed her teeth, or sometimes, after a gentle gust of wind blew on her cheek. The result was something like an “electric shock,” she said, with no obvious cause. It later evolved into a “constant and excruciating” sensation. When asked by doctors to rate the pain from one to 10, she said it was a 13. “I was thinking, ‘Was I imagining this pain? Where did it come from? Why is it here?'” This is all quite typical of many of my clients who have suffered this injury at the hands of a negligent dentist or oral surgeon.

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As evidenced by recently filed lawsuit, dental injuries from malpractice that are compensable in a lawsuit can include, in addition to dental nerve injuries, lost wages, pain and suffering and loss of consortium, such injuries as burns inside the mouth caused by fire. Of course, to be recoverable in a court of law, the injuries must be caused by dental malpractice.

As reported previously, a pediatric dentist is being sued for dental malpractice for improperly using a diamond bur to smooth his patient’s teeth while she was under anesthetics. The procedure then caused a spark that ignited the throat pack in the mouth and produced a fire inside the patient’s mouth and resulted in burns that the lawsuit is seeking recovery for.

The case is in suit and is seeking recovery for burns to the epiglottis, throat, tongue, mouth, lips, and surrounding areas. In addition, due to the area of the injury, the lawsuit alleged that some of the injuries may be permanent and disabling.

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As a personal injury lawyer in Atlanta, I’ve noticed the “My Bald Lawyer” billboards are continuing to pop up on most interstates in the Atlanta area. This got me thinking, all these billboards must be for a reason? Do people really select a lawyer based on something as simple as a catchy billboard (even one as simple as My Bald Lawyer)? Obviously they do because there are so many billboards with so many catchy phrases.

Do people select a lawyer based on something as simple as a catchy slogan Short answer: Yes? But, should they? Obviously they do because there are all these billboards with so many catchy phrases.I have seen Billboards for My Bald Lawyer, Montlick &  Associates, Ken Nugent/ “Just one call that’s all”/”Call Ken,” Morgan & Morgan, Monge & Associates and many others. But what should someone look for when seeking a lawyer to represent them because of a personal injury or malpractice situation.

Want to find the best lawyer in Atlanta, or a civil trial lawyer in Atlanta, or the best civil trial lawyer in Atlanta, etc then the absolute best way to go about that is asking trusted friends and business associates if they can recommend a civil trial lawyer in Atlanta that they have used in the past and have gotten excellent results. Note well, that you are not asking for a referral or a lawyer who they have not used. Too often, lawyer get referred in Georgia because they go to Church with someone, or work with someone’s wife, or golf with a buddy or on an ALTA tennis team with a friend, etc. Find a great lawyer who works hard for you, knows the law, and get excellent results is a lot harder than being recommended to call someone’s buddy because they like him; or because he throws good parties or because his wife works for a big law firm. Don’t fall for that nonsense. Not today, not any day!

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The owners and management companies of Georgia Apartment complexes have what is referred to under Georgia law as a non-delegable duty to make sure that their apartments and the entire complex are safe and do not have any unsafe conditions that can cause injury or death to the occupants, their guests or anyone else who is lawfully on the premises. This duty would extend to workers who are delivering packages for UPS, Federal Express and Amazon during the busy holiday season in Atlanta, as well as others who come onto the property for lawful purposes. In their wrongful death lawsuit filed in Fulton County State Court a toddler’s parents allege that their apartment complex in the Lindbergh area of Atlanta was negligent by not having any safety features in the window, as required by building codes, and that this lack of safety features was the proximate cause of their son’s tragic death. The toddler was curious, looked down through the windows and was able to squeeze through and feel to his death.

As mandated by the International Building Code, which has been adopted by the state of Georgia and which sets the standard for safety in apartment complexes, an exterior wall window within 3 feet of the floor must have safety devices if opening the window would allow an object 4 inches in diameter or larger to otherwise pass through.

In response to the lawsuit, the complex’s owner, ignored a request for comment on the lawsuit. However, lawyers have indicated that after the toddler’s death, the complex installed safety features on the windows that would have avoided the death.

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Georgia is one of 20 states that don’t require adults in the back seats of vehicles to buckle up. Safety advocates say many people are paying with their lives. In 2017, 44% of the 1,057 people who died in crashes on Georgia roads were not wearing seat belts. Nationwide, 43% of people who died in crashes were not buckled up.

It’s hard to imagine that this is the case, but Georgia first started regulating seat belts in 1988, only requiring front-seat occupants to buckle up. The law has been altered over the years — slowly adding specifications that allowed police to cite someone spotted not wearing a seat belt and required minors and those riding in pickups to be restrained. For many years, pickup trucks were specifically excluded from the seat belt laws, presumably to help farm workers, but the rationale makes no sense, as they could have passed the seat belt laws and simply excluded farm workers while they were working on the farm from the new laws.

Pick-up truck drivers and passengers in Georgia are now required to wear seat belts. Georgia is the last state to adopt pick-up truck seat belt laws. The upgraded seatbelt laws came were gradual over time and accompanied the Georgia General Assembly’s decision to increase speed limits on rural interstates, according to the Georgia State Patrol. Seat belt usage has increased 30% since the laws have been tightened, and this is a great development for Georgia driver safety.

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All of us lawyers start out with the best of intentions. Daily stress and requirements wear on us. We read in the papers about lawyers who have strayed and have been punished for doing things that are unethical, unprofessional, or even at times, illegal. This invariably provides fodder for those who relish in putting lawyers down and casting us as less than worthy of accolades. We are bound by a code of ethics and by rules of professionalism that set parameters of what we can and cannot do in most situations. I strive for more.

As a Georgia lawyer, I aspire every day to do the following:

  • to put the interests of my clients before all else.
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There are many elements of damages in Georgia Personal Injury cases. Some that come to mind immediately are medical bills and past lost wages. Those are easy to quantify and prove. In other words, they are what they are, they have already happened and there are hard numbers associated with these damages. These types of damages are called hard or special damages. The other extreme in regard to damages is what most people know as pain and suffering. We at Katz Wright Fleming & Dodson LLC, LLC tend to stay away from the use of “pain and suffering” because many people have a negative connotation of this phrase. All it really means is: in what ways, other than special damages that you can affix a dollar amount to, has the injury affected the Plaintiff? So, the pain and suffering damages are at the other end of the spectrum from special damages — they are real, but they are for the enlightened conscience of the jury to decide what they are (the jury will not be given any receipts to prove these damages). In between these two extremes are damages that can be proved with expert testimony by using an economist or other expert. One aspect of these damages is proving an inability to work in the future or a decreased capacity to work. Typically, the following questions form a framework when trying to convey the extent of these damages to our client.
1) Has the plaintiff been injured in such a way that her ability to earn and labor has been affected? Not all injuries involve these types of damages, but most serious injuries do.
2) Can the plantiff return to work and perform the same job that she was doing prior to the injury she sustained? If so, the inquiry ends, as the only lost wages would be past lost wages.
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The state of Georgia will receive $3.4 million in settlement of tranvaginal mesh litigation that is also the subject in 40 other states. Neither  Johnson & Johnson nor its subsidiary Ethican who was also involved in the settlement, have admitted fault.

This mesh, once hailed as a breakthrough in abdominal, vaginal and other types of organ surgery has proved to be a costly mistake for the manufacturers due to its tendency to lead to infection or breakdown within the body. The Food and Drug Administration eventually reclassified the mesh as a high-risk device. This year the FDA ordered companies to stop selling the product for prolapse patients, but some doctors still use the product “off label” which can lead to the problems that have been experienced in the past. Off label use is not illegal, but it is highly risky because, as in this case, it can fly in the face of clear FDA mandates to not use a product due to known risks and complications.

In addition to paying the money, the companies must take certain actions: They can’t say that implantation “may” prompt flesh to react to the mesh as a foreign body. They have to say it “will” cause a foreign body reaction, and that the effects may vary and may be ongoing. They have to detail the risks, including permanent dysfunction going to the bathroom or pain with intercourse or loss of sexual function. They have to explain that surgery to fix the mesh failure has its own risks and may not solve the problem. In most cases, if proper informed consent is given to the patients, they would choose not to have this material placed in their body. While informed consent is not a claim that is usually successful under current Georgia law in medical malpractice cases, it does apply to a products liability case such as this one, since a patient must be properly informed as to the risks associated with putting a mesh in their body, especially one that has had specific complications in the past the the FDA has grown concerned enough about to change the product labeling and warning. In my opinion, there would have to be some pretty compelling circumstances that can’t be addressed in other ways without using the vaginal mesh to warrant to the use of the mesh with the risks discussed above.

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The Georgia Rule of the Road Statutes provides:

40-8-70. Horns and warning devices

(a) Every motor vehicle when operated upon a highway shall be equipped with a horn in good working order and capable of emitting sound audible under normal conditions from a distance of not less than 200 feet, but no horn or other warning device shall emit an unreasonably loud or harsh sound or a whistle. The driver of a motor vehicle shall, when it is reasonably necessary to ensure safe operation, give audible warning with his or her horn but shall not otherwise use such horn when upon a highway.

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