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Savannah Business Organizations Law Blog

Guarding your John Hancock

"Never sign anything without letting your attorney review it first". This is advice many in the business community have likely heard ad nauseam from their legal counsel. As business litigators can attest, it is also advice not always heeded. This was seen often after the real estate crash, where many deep pocketed individuals had personally guaranteed speculative real estate or business endeavors, only to be pursued vigorously upon their failure. While the danger of signing a personal guaranty is still fresh in the minds of the business community, individual liability arising out of a limited liability entity can still rear its ugly head.

BEN PERKINS AND PAT O'CONNOR OBTAIN SUMMARY JUDGMENT FOR OLIVER MANER CLIENT THE EFFINGHAM COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS

In an order entered on July 14, 2014, the Superior Court of Effingham County granted summary judgment in favor of Oliver Maner client the Effingham County Board of Commissioners on all of the Plaintiff's claims. The Plaintiff alleged the Board improperly required the Plaintiff to provide a letter of credit in exchange for the County's extension of water and sewer infrastructure to the Plaintiff's subdivision, and asserted an inverse condemnation claim, a claim for damages under 42 U.S.C. ยง 1983, premised upon an alleged violation of the "Takings" clause of the Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution, and a claim for reimbursement of the fees the Plaintiff paid its lender for the letter of credit. Chief Judge William Woodrum granted summary judgment to the Board of Commissioners, holding that the Plaintiff's claims failed as a matter of law. The case is Park West Effingham, L.P. v. Effingham County Board of Commissioners et. al (Effingham County Superior Court Case No. SU 09CV305W).

BEN PERKINS AND PAT O'CONNOR SECURE FAVORABLE SUMMARY JUDGMENT RULING FROM COURT OF APPEALS

The Georgia Court of Appeals affirmed the State Court of Effingham County's ruling, resulting in a complete summary judgment victory on all claims asserted against Oliver Maner clients the Effingham County Board of Commissioners, Sheriff Jimmy McDuffie, and Deputy Provost. The Plaintiffs alleged the firm's clients were liable for personal injuries and property damage allegedly sustained as a result of striking a pothole on a county-maintained road. Both the trial court and Court of Appeals rejected the argument, holding the County Defendants were entitled to judgment as a matter of law. The case is Davis et al. v. Effingham County Board of Commissioners et al., A14A0292 (Ga. Ct. App. July 1, 2014)

PAUL H. THRELKELD, ZACK S. HOWARD, AND PATRICK T. O'CONNOR OBTAINED SUMMARY JUDGMENT FOR OLIVER MANER CLIENTS THE CITY OF BLOOMINGDALE AND CITY OFFICIALS WAYNE TIPTON, BILLY STROZIER AND ERNIE GRIZZARD

Summary Judgment was granted in the case of Mary K. Mitchell v. City of Bloomingdale, et al. (Chatham County State Court Case No. STCV-1200651-CO). The plaintiff claimed that the City and its officials violated her Constitutional rights by taking her campaign signs without appropriate authority. Plaintiff also claimed that the defendants' actions were negligent and were undertaken with malice and in an arbitrary and capricious manner. Judge Hermann Coolidge granted summary judgment in favor of the City and the individual officials, thereby dismissing all claims against them.

PAT O'CONNOR AND ZACH HOWARD OBTAIN SUMMARY JUDGMENT RULING IN FAVOR OF CITY OF SAVANNAH.

Summary judgment was granted to Oliver Maner client The City of Savannah in Lafayette Wright v Savannah Chatham Metro Police, Det. Steve Madina and Investors Lending Group, LLC, Chatham Superior Court case no. CV13-0009-KA. The Plaintiff claimed false arrest and false imprisonment arising out of an incident which occurred on November 13, 2012 at 625 E. Waldburg Street in Savannah. By Order dated June 18, 2014, Judge Michael Karpf granted the City's Motion for Summary Judgment, thereby dismissing all claims filed by Wright against the City.

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