The demand for lawyers is expected to grow by 6% in the next 10 years. Many legal situations call for a lawyer, such as getting an auto accident injury. There are many skilled and adamant lawyers. However, not all of them act ethically and you might be left questioning “what can i do if my attorney is not doing his job? “ When you hire a lawyer, they’re required to abide by specific ethical standards. If they don’t, the client as their own rights. You should know what to do if you’re not satisfied with your lawyer and if you can switch lawyers. Are you wondering, what can I do if my attorney is not doing his job? Here are the options you have. Reasons Clients Are Unhappy With Their Lawyers There are common reasons why clients aren’t satisfied with their lawyers. These reasons may or may not be unethical. Here are a few examples. They’re Not Communicative One of the many core aspects of a lawyer’s rule is the ability to communicate with their clients. If your lawyer isn’t returning your calls, is not answering your questions and/or not addressing your concerns, this is a red flag. They’re Not Settling Your Case Some cases are more complex, require more evidence, or are just difficult. Your lawyer should work diligently in your favor, regardless of your case type. However, if a significant amount of time has passed and your lawyer hasn’t settled your case, this is another red flag. In addition, you should also be alarmed if a significant amount of time passed and the lawyer hasn’t started your case at all. Financial Issues Let’s say you filed a lawsuit for an accident and you won. Your lawyer is entitled to a cut of the settlement; however, they take your entire settlement. This is an example of unethical attorney behavior. You can report your lawyer and contact additional sources (such as your state’s client security fund) to retrieve your settlement. In some cases, you may need to contact the police. What If You’re Unhappy With Your Lawyer After Your Case Is Over? Unethical behavior isn’t limited to pending cases. Your lawyer can act unethically even after your case is over. A common example is charging their clients after they lost, even if they state they won’t in the contract. Before reporting your lawyer, contact them. There could have just been a simple misunderstanding or an honest mistake. If they are still disobedient, report them to the state. However, there are examples that don’t pertain to unethical behavior. For example, maybe you don’t think your lawyer represented you effectively. If this is the case, talk about these concerns with your lawyer. Your voice is also powerful online — leave an honest review to inform potential clients. What if you believe your lawyer was negligent toward you and your case? This negligence can be dire — causing you to lose your case and lose money. If this sounds like your experience, you can file a malpractice suit against your lawyer. What If Your Lawyer Acted Unethically? A lawyer has to follow a strict ethical code. Some of the behaviors they must follow include: Following the client’s instructions Competency Exercise effective communication Diligence Confidentiality Be honest and upfront with fees Care when holding onto a client’s property Loyalty If your lawyer went against you or this code, you can research their specific behaviors to see if you can report them. It’s recommended you resolve any issues directly with your lawyer unless they acted unethically. In Georgia, you’ll want to contact the State Bar of Georgia or the Georgia Consumer Protection. These organizations will investigate your lawyer. Keep in mind, you may not be reimbursed for the money you already spent. Should You Get the Police Involved? You should only contact the police if you believe your lawyer committed a crime. Common examples include the lawyer stealing your settlement, stealing your property, or using any information against your will. Keep in mind, you shouldn’t contact the police unless you’re certain your lawyer committed a crime. Contacting the police should also be a last resort — always contact the Bar association and other consumer protection services first. How to Hire a New Lawyer Before you even fire or report your lawyer, look for a new lawyer. Your new lawyer will help tremendously when firing your previous lawyer. Contact different lawyers, research multiple lawyers and ask specific questions. Inform them you already have a case open and you’re not satisfied with your existing lawyer. When you select your new attorney, sign a retainer agreement. This agreement states the new attorney is taking over your case. From here, your new attorney will prepare a form called the “Consent to Change Attorneys” as well as a “stop work” form they will deliver to your new attorney. Hire the Best Lawyer the First Time If you’re looking for a lawyer, you should ensure you’re hiring the best lawyer to avoid dealing with a poorly skilled, unethical, or criminal lawyer. First, research several lawyers in your area. Look up reviews and ask your loved ones for recommendations. Visit these different lawyers and take advantage of free consultations. Describe your case in-depth and ask specific questions. Some of these questions include: Have you handled a similar case? How long will my case take? What kind of settlement should I expect? Who will be responsible for my case? You should also avoid hiring the first lawyer you meet or the one you’re recommended to. Take time and research different lawyers. What Can I Do If My Attorney Is Not Doing His Job? Are you asking yourself, what can I do if my attorney is not doing his job? Report the attorney if they’re acting unethically or criminally. But if you’re looking for a new personal injury lawyer to handle your case, you don’t have to look farther than our firm. At Georgia Auto Law, every member of our team specializes exclusively in...

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wrongful death suit

Accidents happen every day, whether we use caution or not. Sometimes an accident isn’t preventable.  If you’re fortunate, you might walk away with a few cuts or bruises. But other times, a fractured leg or concussion is the outcome of a car crash. The severity of an auto accident impacts the injuries and could lead to disability or death. Wrongful death is a horrible thing that can’t be reversed. When an unexpected death happens due to someone else’s negligence, a wrongful death suit might be a reasonable option. Certain family members can file for a wrongful death lawsuit.  Read along to learn more about wrongful death suits and what they can do for you. What is a Wrongful Death Suit? A wrongful death lawsuit is a form of personal injury claim where the accident victim died due to the injuries sustained.  The eligibility to file a wrongful death suit varies by each state. Common Causes of a Wrongful Death Wrongful death lawsuits happen for many reasons. But some of the common causes include: Car accidents Birth injuries Medical malpractice Work-related injuries Abuse and neglect Defective products Truck accidents Motorcycle accidents When a family member dies because of someone else, it’s life-changing. Nothing will bring back the person or make the outcome better. But if the person that died left-behind children, a spouse, a dependent, or bills, filing a wrongful death suit might be a reasonable decision. Who Can File a Wrongful Death Suit? Losing a family member is never an easy thing. The loss of life leaves a void and might cause depression, anxiety, and long-lasting grief.  In the state of Georgia, according to Ga. Code Ann. § 51-4-2 et seq, the spouse of the deceased, could file a wrongful death suit. When the deceased wasn’t married, then the children could file a claim to collect damages. In the absence of a spouse or children, the parents of the deceased may open a lawsuit.  What Damages Can I Recover? Filing a lawsuit might be frivolous if it doesn’t meet the requirements. Speaking with a wrongful death lawyer might help you avoid unnecessary issues or wasting your time. If you believe your loved one’s death is eligible for a wrongful death suit, contact an attorney as soon as possible. Each state enforces a statute of limitations for the time allotted to open a claim. In Georgia, the statute lasts for two years per Ga. Code Ann. § 9-3-33 et seq.  When a claim gets filed after the statute of limitations expires, it could get dismissed by the court. Although some circumstances do allow for the late submission of an application, it’s best to rely on this as a guarantee. Recoverable damages available in a wrongful death lawsuit depends on who is filing the suit. A spouse or child of the person that died can sue for monetary compensation like benefits or wages.  If a child or spouse doesn’t exist, the estate executor might file for money to cover the funeral and burial arrangements, medical expenses, or pain and suffering endured by the deceased before their death.  Hire a Wrongful Death Lawyer Lawsuits are complicated and time-consuming. When you’re handling the life-altering effects of losing a loved one, you might not have the focus to do the work an attorney could do. It’s never advised for a person to represent themselves in a case because of the factors involved. When searching for a wrongful death lawyer, it’s essential to find the best. Searching for a Wrongful Death Lawyer Looking for a wrongful death attorney might seem overwhelming, but it doesn’t need to be. There are ways to sift through your options and find the right one. Referrals When you need an attorney’s help, it’s good to speak with those you trust. Asking friends, family, and close acquaintances for the name of a good wrongful death lawyer is an excellent way to start the search. People satisfied with their lawyers enjoy singing their praises. The same is true for people dissatisfied with their lawyer’s conduct. Receiving positive and negative information about a lawyer is helpful. It might save you from hiring someone unqualified for your needs. Internet Search Conducting an internet search is another way to find an attorney. When searching, it’s important to have a list of questions close bye. If the information you want isn’t posted on their business website, then contact their office for a consultation. Be sure to look for lawyers in your town and state. You want to ensure traveling to the lawyer’s office won’t be a hassle.  Read Reviews The internet makes it simple to find out the good, the bad, and the ugly about a business. During your search for an attorney, look for reviews and testimonials. The information left provides insight into the type of person you would be hiring. While each negative review should be taken with a grain of salt, the positive reviews are always pleasant to read.  The negative reviews could be the result of many factors, such as a client with unrealistic expectations or disappointment in the outcome of a case.  Even seasoned attorneys can lose a case. It’s crucial to remember an attorney is human like you.  Schedule a Consultation The loss of a parent, significant other, or child is horrible. No amount of money will bring them back to life. But the stress of financial instability shouldn’t occur to the family members left behind. A wrongful death suit might bring financial stability and alleviate unnecessary stress. If you’re ready to speak with a seasoned attorney, contact our firm to schedule an appointment. 

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electric scooters for adults street legal

Did you know millions of Millennials are rejecting cars in favor of alternative transport? For a ton of reasons — from saving the environment to saving hard-earned money— people are turning to e-bikes, electric scooters, and even hoverboards. Yes, your kid’s favorite toy scooter is now a legit form of transportation! But is an electric scooter for adults street legal? Do you need a license? Can you ride it on the sidewalk and do you need to wear a helmet? Read on for the 411. Is an Electric Scooter for Adults Street Legal? So, is an electric scooter for adults street legal? Unfortunately, there is no yes/no answer. Because it’s a relatively new form of transportation, current laws and legislation may or may not apply. This is because most laws were originally made for traditional, non-powered bicycles. Whether you can legally ride an electric moped or scooter depends on your state’s local laws. But the confusing part is that your state may allow electric scooters, but your city might not. And your city may encourage the use of e-scooters, but your college campus may not! Mind-boggling, right? But what does Federal Law say? The US 2002 Federal Law states that an electric bike is street legal if: it has a top speed of 20 mph or less it has a motor power below 750W If your electric moped fits into that category, you will not need a license or registration to ride in most states. But this rule and others vary. Keep reading to find out more. Scooter Laws in the US In most areas around the US, e-scooters follow the same rules as electric bicycles. This means in most places you can ride your scooter on trails, public roads, and bike lanes. Riding on side-walks is off-limits for anyone over the age of 12. However, small toy-like e-scooters are not allowed on public roads. To qualify as road-worthy, they must be sturdily equipped with good tires, a suspension system, and steering. Some states also require they have rear-view mirrors, a horn, lights, and turn signals. They are the basic rules to follow. But, in certain states and cities, the rules are slightly varied. Here are a few examples. California In the land of surfing and skateboards, of course, scooters are all the rage! The trendy transportation sparked a surge in popularity. This led to clarifications in their electric scooter laws. Current California state law says: You must have a valid drivers license (or a learning permit) to ride You can’t ride your scooter over 15 mph You cannot ride on a street with a speed limit of over 25 mph (unless a bike lane is available) If you ride on the road, you must stay close to the right curb You must wear a helmet These extra rules are super handy when deciding whether to invest in an electric scooter in California. Georgia In Georgia, the rules are slightly different. These rules apply for the state of Georgia, but you should check your local municipality to find out the rules in your neighborhood. If a scooter has an engine of over 50cc, it’s subject to the same rules as motorcycles. This means you will need a motorcycle license, registration, and insurance. You also have to be the age of 17 or over. However, for a low-powered electric scooter, you don’t need a license, registration or insurance. You can ride on bike paths, bike lanes, and on roads with a speed limit of 35 mph or less. Children who are under 16 need to wear a helmet. And nobody can use them on sidewalks, even kids. New York If you dream of scooting around the city of dreams, you’re out of luck. The state of New York doesn’t allow e-scooters on any street, sidewalk, parking lot or highway. Until the rules change, stay out of the big apple! Ride with Common Sense as Your Guide When you’re riding around on your scooter, you may feel like you’re above the law. But the rules of the road still apply to you. Here are a few examples: Look out for pedestrians Stay out of the way of faster traffic Obey traffic laws (such as stoplights and one-way streets) Ride slow to prevent accidents Be sure your scooter is road-worthy before riding (for example, the brakes are working properly) Use bike lanes when you have the option No passengers allowed You must have at least one hand on your handlebars at all times Don’t hitch the scooter onto another vehicle When driving in the dark, you need to use a white headlight and a red reflector While these rules aren’t on paper, most are basic common sense! Before You Ride, Let’s Wrap Up An electric moped or scooter is a lot of fun. Not only is it eco-friendly, but it’s friendly on your wallet too. It’s easy to see why so many are turning to this alternative form of transportation. But are they legal? Let’s wrap up. Until any laws that address street legal scooters are officially made, remember these points: In most cases, you CAN ride your e-scooter any place you can ride a traditional bicycle. In most states, e-scooters are legal, but in some cities, they’re not. In other areas, riding scooters may be legal, but a few extra rules may apply, such as wearing a helmet. So make sure to check local laws and legislation to be on the safe side! And whatever you do or wherever you ride, use common sense to make your experience safe and secure. Both for yourself and others around you. Keep Calm and Scoot On! So, is an electric scooter for adults street legal? As it all depends on your state, the best thing to do is to keep calm, check local laws, and scoot on! But remember, as electric scooters are still pretty new, you may face issues. If a local policeman fines you for riding street legal scooters without a license, what can...

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electric scooter accidents

As use continues to rise, there have been many serious electric scooter accidents, including some fatalities.  This has led to a split in public opinion about electric scooters. Some believe that they are a great way to move people throughout the city.  But, others find them to be a public nuisance and want them banned. Regardless of which camp you fall in, this post is designed to shed some light on electric scooter accidents in Georgia.  If you have been injured while riding a scooter, or have been hit by one, you should make sure your legal rights are protected.  You may be able to receive monetary compensation for the injuries and damages that you have sustained.  Read on below to find out more.  What is an Electric Scooter? An “e-scooter” is another name for “electric scooter.”  These e-scooters are motorized scooters that carry the rider without much energy at all–unlike the old scooters that you actually had to push.  These electric scooters can be very convenient if you have to travel a short distance.  There are many different providers, but the overall idea is the same: you locate a scooter anywhere, rent it in the relevant phone app, and then you can leave it anywhere when you are done with it.  The entire platform is “dockless”–meaning, there is no set location from which you rent and return the scooter. How Does the Process Work? These battery-powered scooters have recently been fitted with wireless connection and GPS capability, allowing “scooter-share” apps connect with the thousands of e-scooters out in the world. Here is how the process works: Download the app on your smartphone Create an account and login Accept all of the terms and conditions (with small print disclaiming liability for any damages that may occur while using the scooters) Add credit card payment information Use the GPS maps part of the app to locate the nearest scooter (which also shows battery levels) Tap a button in the app to unlock the scooter Start riding When done, you “check-in” the scooter and leave it anywhere. The range of these e-scooters will vary based on battery life, but most can go for about 15 miles on a single charge.  Then, representatives of the company will come around a collect the scooters, charge them, and put them back out for use. The prices vary by app, but usually there is an “unlock fee” of $1-$2 then there is a charge per minute of use.  For example, the company Bird charges $0.15/minute. Today, you will find e-scooters throughout most of the major cities in the U.S. and they are very popular on college campuses. Problems With Electric Scooters The electric scooter craze is not showing any signs of slowing down.  However, the more time that passes means that more accidents are happenings.  This has led to increasing controversy surrounding scooters. One problem is with the approach taken by the scooter companies.  When they all started, they adopted a “dump scooters in city first…ask questions later” approach that caught many off guard.  The big scooter companies released the scooters without any regard for local laws and regulations. They also did so without notifying local officials or police. Read more about Georgia’s electric scooter laws. Additionally, the scooter companies have attempted to deny all liability or responsibility for bad behavior by riders. If you have ever ridden one of these scooters, you know that they have more power than you might think.  The electric motors are quite strong and provide a lot of “get up” when you hit the throttle. This means that they have the potential to cause serious accidents which can put riders at risk as well as pedestrians and cyclists. One report on scooter accidents found that there have been a minimum of 1,545 electric scooters accidents since late 2017. Another problem is rider behavior, and bad rider behavior has created a host of problems: Very few riders wear helmets while riding.      Many riders ride on sidewalks (which is against City ordinance) People leave the scooters in dangerous areas Riding multiple people on a single scooter This has led to some pedestrians to file lawsuits against scooter riders who have hit them.  But, there have also been many injuries caused by malfunctioning, defective, or damages scooters as well as dangerous road conditions.  As we said above, one of the best things about the scooters is the ability to leave them anywhere and not have to worry about it again.  However, this has led to riders ditching scooters in places such as: Sidewalks Bike paths Wheelchair access ramps Entrances to businesses  Private driveways There has also been a surge in scooter-related vandalism.  Some reports have found scooters being thrown at vehicles causing serious property damage. Government officials were caught off guard and are now trying to respond with laws governing scooters.  Some cities have enacted “scooter laws” to try to address some of the growing concerns. With all this, be sure and check your city’s local laws to make sure you are following the rules when riding e-scooters.  And, always wear a helmet! Risks of Motorized Scooters The following are some of the key risks that motorized scooters pose: Stability: Electric scooters only have two wheels, so they can become unstable if not properly handled. Visibility: E-scooters are very small compared to cars, and even compared to motorcycles.  So, they are sometimes not viable to other motorists on the roadway.  Lack of Protection: Just like when riding a motorcycle, scooter riders are completely exposed to the dangers on the roadways.  Unlike occupants of a car, scooter riders have no seatbelts or airbags to protect them. Poor Road Conditions: Bad roads containing potholes, gravel, and uneven pavement can be a serious problem.  Most cars simply roll right over this stuff, but the small tires on an e-scooter are more susceptible to crashing.  Lack of Rider Experience:  Many riders are jumping on one of these scooters for the first time.  Just like riding a bike,...

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georgias electric scooter laws

If you have been anywhere around recently, you have probably seen electric scooters seemingly stranded on sidewalks, bike racks, roads, fields, everywhere.  The truth is, they are not stranded at all–they are waiting to be rented by anyone who needs a ride. These “dockless” scooters allow a rider to check-out a scooter, ride it to their destination, and then leave it for another rider to use later.  When the scooters get low on battery, designated “chargers” come around and collect the scooters to take them home and charge them. Then, they re-release the scooters back into the wild for continued scooting.    Whether it’s good or bad, the “scooter-share” phenomenon seems to be here to stay.  Because of this, our lawyers have been getting a ton of questions about Georgia’s electric scooter laws.  Given that the “scooter-craze” is such a new concept, it is normal for people to have questions about scooter laws. In this article, I will provide an overview of Georgia electric scooter laws so that you can not only scoot safely, but also scoot in compliance with Georgia scooter laws. If you’ve been injured in an electric scooter accident, read this post on what you need to know. Riding on Sidewalks When it comes to scooters laws, sidewalks are off limits.  In Atlanta, scooters are not allowed to be ridden on sidewalks and crosswalks. However, a rider is permitted to dismount the scooter and walk on a sidewalk or through a crosswalk.  When walking the scooter, you are considered a pedestrian and not a rider.  Therefore, you can use the sidewalks and crosswalks when walking the scooter.   After all, they are called “sidewalks” not “sidescoots”. Multiple Riders on One Scooter As fun as it may seem, grabbing a friend and sharing a scooter is also in violation of scooter laws.  Under city ordinance, electric scooters shall not be operated by more than one person at a time. This scooter law certainly makes sense.  If you have ever ridden one, you know how unstable the scooters can be.  So, tell your friend to get their own scooter–it will be more fun anyway.  Following the Rules of the Road When riding a scooter on the roadway, a rider is required to obey traffic laws.  This includes stopping at stop signs, obeying traffic lights, and following all rules that apply to cars on the road. Additionally, scooter riders must follow the flow of traffic and yield to pedestrians. This is the same law that applies to cyclists.  If you are operating an electric scooter on the roadway, follow the rules of the road or you might see the blue lights pulling you over.  Texting While Scooting It is also against scooter laws to use a cell phone while on an electric scooter.  City of Atlanta ordinance states that “no individual shall physically hold a wireless telecommunications device, including cell phones” while operating an electric scooter (Ordinance 18-0-1322). This is one that is very important.  As we all know, using a phone and driving (anything) can be very dangerous.  Add in the fact that a scooter has a serious balance component to riding, then taking a hand off the handlebars to send a text can be a one way ticket straight to the pavement. Electric Scooters Follow Local Parking Laws This is one of the biggest questions we get all the time.  The idea of riding something and then leaving it behind forever and forgetting about it is a new concept.  For example, until now we are accustomed to keeping track of our own belongings. This is not the case with electric scooters.  There is something about abandoning a motorized vehicle that riders really like.    In fact, this is one of the most attractive features of the electric scooter craze: you can ride straight to your destination and forget about the scooter. However, you are not allowed to drop the scooter at the entrance to the coffee shop you scooted to and walk right in.  City ordinance does not allow a scooter user to park a scooter in any of the following places: On vegetation  Over a grate or manhole cover In a loading zone, driveway, vehicle travel lane, bike lane, or shared use path Where they obstruct vehicle parking Where they obstruct pedestrian or wheelchair access to buildings In a bus stop Within 5 feet of a bikeshare location Where it may obstruct traffic or regulatory signs Where it may obstruct emergency service infrastructure (fire hydrants, etc.) (Ordinance 18-0-1322).  Further, electric scooters are required to be parked upright at all times.  So, kick out that kick-stand and make sure you leave the scooter standing.  Always scoot safely The above scooter laws are in place to keep people safe and having fun.  There is no doubt that the electric scooter launch has brought more transportation options for people.  However, they have also introduced some safety concerns that need to be kept in mind.  Be sure to always wear a helmet while riding and follow scooter laws to stay safe and secure while scooting! Our specialized accident attorneys can help you. At Georgia Auto Law, every member of our team specializes exclusively in Georgia auto and motorcycle accident cases.  We are the only law firm in Georgia handling only auto accident cases. This means that we do not focus our time, research, or resources on anything except winning you the most money on your car accident case. You are welcome to call one of our auto attorneys at any time, day or night, at (404) 662-4949.  You can also complete our consultation form, and one of our car accident specialists will reach out to you within minutes.  With our No Fee Pledge™, you pay nothing. We are here for you.

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