Archive | Advertise | May 2012

Everybody, Everywhere, All the Time

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GTLA is the most active and influential group of lawyers in Georgia. Why is this? It is because we are motivated by our never-ending responsibility to protect the rights of every Georgia citizen. 

All Georgians are subject to the risk of serious injury or death that should have been avoided with the use of reasonable care. Consequently, we represent all walks of life, from doctors to CEOs to grocery store clerks to the unemployed. We are lawyers for the people, and that includes everybody.  

It is the breadth of our work that requires us as lawyers to do more than just represent our own clients one at a time. Mastering relevant law, investigation, insurance issues, trial preparation and trial skills is necessary to fulfill our duties to people with whom we have contracted to represent. But what happens if the law that forms the very basis of our clients’ rights is decimated by unwarranted legislation? We all know the answer, and so we must all work together to prevent legislative rollbacks.

While we have our own clients to represent in negotiations, depositions, pleadings and trials, by far the biggest case we have in our office is the one we work on together. We are co-counsel in the effort to protect the civil justice system from legislative threats.  

If we as lawyers do not fully engage in the legislative process, no one will step in to fight proposals to place caps on damages or caps on attorneys’ fees, the insurance industry’s quest to reduce the rights of the insured, medical malpractice "reform," product liability limitations and the effort to eliminate workers’ rights. Making and amending laws is a job for lawyers, not a job for the Chamber of Commerce, hospital corporations or insurance companies. If we do not make it our job, we can rest assured that those special interest proponents who believe they can profit from legislative enactments will.  

So what can we do? Reach out to legislators today. Establish relationships with legislators and let them know that we are here to help. All politics is local. All of us must take the responsibility to engage legislators in our own communities and to help them in any way, shape or form we can on a consistent basis, so that they will know we are truly committed to assisting them in their public service and sacrifice for our state.  

I am proud to serve you as President of Georgia Trial Lawyers Association. We have all chosen to practice in an area of the law that can be personally rewarding and, at times, downright frustrating. Choosing to represent clients against the interests of insurance companies and other industries requires hard work and tremendous risk. But the risk we take is far offset by the reward of knowing that our work is honorable and for the advancement of the greater good. As always, we will meet these challenges together and with great purpose.

GTLA needs everybody, everywhere, all the time.  

Jay Sadd
GTLA President


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