The Court of Appeals of Georgia rules in favor of the City of Brookhaven in auto accident case involving a defective pre-suit notice.
In Manzanares v. City of Brookhaven, the Court of Appeals of Georgia ruled in favor the City of Brookhaven in an automobile accident case that involved a defective pre-suit ante-litem notice. In an unanimous three judge opinion, the Court held that the plaintiff failed to comply with the notice requirement of O.C.G.A. sec. 36-33-5, which requires that the claimant provide the municipality an offer to settle for a specific amount within six month of the incident in question. The letter sent to the City stated that the “value of this claim may exceed $250,000.” The Court held that this statement could mean any amount above $250,000, and thus did not constitute a specific offer to settle. The Court also ruled that the plaintiff, when confronted with this defense, cannot dismiss the lawsuit and then send another notice in an effort to cure the deficiency. Mel Mobley of Lokey, Mobley and Doyle represented the City of Brookhaven in this case.