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Hall County Legal Blog

Modifying a child support order due to disability

When someone becomes disabled, their life may unravel in a myriad of ways. They may lose the ability to pursue various dreams and goals, struggle to handle daily responsibilities that arise, become depressed or even be unable to work. For non-custodial parents who have to pay child support, a disability can be especially devastating, and they may worry about how they will fulfill their obligations in this regard. However, it is critical for parents who owe child support to do everything they can to stay caught up, and this may necessitate the modification of a child support order.

Aside from the physical and emotional challenges that often arise with a disability, the financial consequences can be significant. From a physical disability brought on by a car crash or workplace injury to mental challenges, there are many ways in which people become disabled. These disabilities can have a major financial toll, whether someone struggles with medical bills or cannot continue living the same lifestyle because of lost wages.

How can you encourage speech development after a TBI

When someone you love has been the victim of a serious car accident in Georgia that has left them with a traumatic brain injury, chances are you have spent considerable time thinking of ways that you can help him or her to heal and recover. One of the aspects of your family member's function that may have been impaired is his or her ability to speak and communicate with those around them. 

You can provide support and help encourage their healing by playing an active role in therapy and helping them to be consistent about completing the exercises they have been given to strengthen their speech development. According to, there are three specific types of exercises that are coordinated into a treatment plan to help victims of TBIs to redevelop their speech. These include the following:

  • Passive exercise such as simple stretches with the help of you or medical resources designed to provide support. You can help your family member complete these exercises and set new goals. 
  • Active exercises include drinking through a straw, learning to blow a whistle and even moving the lips and tongue to rebuild the muscles that help with every day functions such as eating and drinking. 
  • Sensory stimulation will involve hot and cold, pressure or electricity to activate your family member's senses and help them regain reactions to their senses. 

What are some common risks for customers in retail stores?

When you go shopping in a store in Georgia, an injury is not probably something you expect to get. However, for many people, this is exactly what happens. It is essential to understand the risks a retail store may pose to your safety before you ever step a foot inside. This can help to keep you and whoever is with you safe when you are shopping.

According to Kaercher Insurance, some of the safety hazards in a retail setting are not completely on the shoulders of the retailer. For example, shopping cart injuries are often the fault of the shopper. Carts can easily tip over if you allow children to climb on them or stand in them. Always make sure children are securely seated and strapped into the cart. You also should take care when loading your cart to not offset the center of balance.

Can you bounce back from divorce?

You probably already know divorce takes a heavy toll on a person’s life. Ending a relationship can have a negative impact on many different aspects of your livelihood. It can affect you both financially and emotionally, to the point where you might question if you will ever recover.

It may seem hopeless but it is more than possible to bounce back from a divorce. You can rebuild your life and get back on your feet emotionally and financially, with help. Here are a few tips you may want to use to kick start your new life and start to return to normal.

When does a DUI become a felony in Georgia?

If a Georgia police officer stopped you and either determined that you were driving under the influence via a field sobriety test or ascertains you were driving under the influence via a breath or chemical test, you may wonder what type of charges you face. Do you face misdemeanor charges or does driving under the influence warrant felony charges? If this is your first, second or third DUI offense, the charges will fall into the misdemeanor category. However, if it is your fourth offense in 10 years, the state may charge you with a felony.

According to FindLaw, a fourth or subsequent DUI conviction with a 10-year time period is a felony offense. A felony DUI carries with it a fine of not more than $5,000 but not less than $1,000. The judge cannot waive the fine regardless of the amount he or she settles on.

Mother files lawsuit against dog owner after airport attack

At times it is difficult to balance the needs of people who rely on emotional support animals in areas such as Georgia and the safety of those around them. The Portland International Airport in Oregon has recently had to revise its regulations in regard to ESAs in an attempt to strike a better balance after an incident in December 2017 in which an emotional support pit bull allegedly attacked a 5-year-old girl. The girl's mother recently filed a lawsuit against the company that manages the airport, the dog's owner and the airline on which she was traveling, seeking damages in the amount of $1.1 million.

The dog owner was unavailable for comment. The airline refused to speak specifically about pending litigation but did cite its recently revised regulations in regard to emotional support animals, stating that the owners must carry them or keep them on a leash of 3 feet or less if they do not fit in a pet carrier.

When is self-defense valid?

You may be hard-pressed to find someone in Gainesville who has not heard of one claiming self-defense when responding to criminal accusations. In fact, it may seem that such a defense is so common that it has lost its credibility as a valid justification. Yet there very well may be scenarios where you feel threatened to the point of needing to respond with action (in some cases, even lethal force). The question then becomes when are you legally justified to do so? 

Georgia's self-defense law is clearly spelled out in Section 16-3-21 of the state's Crimes and Offenses Code. Here it states that you are indeed justified in using force against yourself and/or others if you believe that it is needed in order to prevent such action from being used against you. The standard against which your intent in the matter is judged is whether or not a reasonable person in the same situation would have reached the same conclusions. 

What do you need to know about attractive nuisances?

It seems like a funny term, but an attractive nuisance is no laughing matter, especially when it concerns your child. You and other Georgia residents need to understand this legal issue, both for your children’s protection and your own potential liability.

FindLaw explains that an attractive nuisance is something on someone’s property that is potentially dangerous and can entice children. An attractive nuisance is something that you, as a reasonable person, would suspect is dangerous for children, yet little or nothing was done to prevent children from being harmed. A homeowner, for example, may reason that children have no business going onto his property without permission and, therefore, it is not his responsibility if they get hurt.

What are the requirements to adopt in Georgia?

If you and your significant other plan to grow your family via adoption in Georgia, you may wish to get started on the adoption process as soon as possible. While it is great that you want to dive right in, be sure to get your ducks in row before beginning the application process. By checking state requirements ahead of time and learning more about the state's adoption laws, you can ensure that the entire process goes much more smoothly and ultimately works out in your favor.

According to American Adoption, Georgia laws govern adoptions that occur within the states. Per the laws, prospective parents must meet several requirements. If you wish to adopt a child as a single person, you must be at least 25 years of age and at least 10 years older than the child. However, the state lowers this age requirement to 21 in the cases of relative adoption. If you wish to adopt a child as a married adult, you must be at least 10 years older than the child. The state does not have age requirements for married couples.

What makes an online threat illegal?

Social media has long since crossed the line between novel and everyday, a fact that has prompted lawmakers to embrace new laws that create a safer and less hostile environment for users. Many of the laws strive to prevent online threats and allow for the persecution of those who make them. Unfortunately for cyberbully victims, the Supreme Court seems to take the stance that online threats are merely a form of free speech. However, that has not stopped states such as Georgia from regulating and prosecuting individuals whom they believe have made credible online threats. 

If you made an online threat and now want to know if the law can prosecute you for a crime, you need to first understand when an online threat is and is not illegal. FindLaw details a few ways to help you differentiate between an illegal and legal online threat.

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