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A Blog about Real Estate, How it Can Be Damaged, and Disputes Over its Transfer

This blog is a personal blog written to discuss legal issues affecting Georgia property, and how it is damaged, transferred, and fought over. I write this partly to keep abreast of the law, and partly to offer a forum for my writing. In order to find content, I often analyze Georgia Supreme Court decisions. I try to update this blog as I can, but writing is a time consuming process.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Georgia Court Upholds Substantial Verdict for Storm Water Damages

In the opinion in the case of Ingles Markets, Inc. v. Kempler, 730 S.E.2d 444 (2012), the Georgia Court of Appeals recently upheld a jury verdict awarded in a Hall County court to the owners of land next door to a commercial shopping center.  At the trial of the case, the jury awarded damages for diminution in the value of the land, damages for the injury to the peace and happiness of the plaintiffs, damages for the costs of remediation, and attorneys' fees and punitive damages.   The court held that the evidence at the trial showed the defendants had control over the cause of the harm and were responsible for the full range of damages awarded by the jury.

The court also addressed the Georgia statute regarding apportionment of liability to nonparties, O.C.G.A. Section 51-12-33(c), and held that the trial court's limitation of the apportionment to an identified nonparty was not error; the trial court was not required under the statute to require consideration of all possible sources of the storm water in assessing liability, and was only required to instruct the jury to consider the sources identified by the defendants pursuant to the notice provision of the statute. 

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