The Georgia Economic Loss Rule is a common law rule that inhibits claimants from seeking tort damages for losses in disputes about the functionality of products that are traditionally remedied in contract actions. The rule arises out of a desire by the courts to maintain separation between damages for breach of contract and the more expansive damages recoverable in tort. The rule provides that absent injury to person or property, other than to a malfunctioning product itself, where the loss is a pecuniary one like loss of the value or use of the product itself or the cost of repairing it, the claimant may not sue the provider for negligence. Application of the rule limits the claimant to remedies for breach of contract or warranty. The rationale is that where only the defective product is damaged due to an inherent defect an action for recompense seeks merely the benefit of the claimant's contractual bargain. Unfortunately, the application of this rule can produce harsh results when the claimant's breach of contract claims are time barred. Several exceptions to the rule have emerged that ameliorate its sometimes harsh effect. This paper will explore the rule, its rationale, and its limitations in Georgia.
In the early 1970's, Mr. Nick Long purchased a new General Motors automobile from the Jim Letts Oldsmobile dealership in Georgia. The engine persistently ran hot and was even blowing out the liquid in the radiator. Long returned the car to the seller for repairs on several occasions. Neither the dealership nor General Motors were able to correct the problem. After 22 months and 27,000 miles, Long alleged that the engine was completely destroyed. Long sold the car for less than its book value and sued General Motors in tort for negligently manufacturing the car and Letts for negligently failing to repair it. Long did not sue the manufacturer or seller for breach of contract or warranty. Long alleged that his compensatory damages included expenses for repairs, time lost from work, loss of use of the car while being repaired, and diminution in the value of the car due to its propensity to overheat. These kinds of compensatory general damages are typically recoverable in a tort action. The trial court, however, granted summary judgment in favor of General Motors and Letts on all of Long's negligence claims. Long appealed. The appellate court affirmed and held that the breaches of duty to produce a car that would not overheat and the duty to fix a car that does were only breaches of contract duties and that Long's lawsuit for negligent tort could not stand. The appellate court reasoned that where the only damages claimed were to the product itself, and the only loss claimed was the value or use of the thing sold or the cost of repairing it, and there was no accident and no physical damage to person or other property caused by the defective item, that such losses were only pecuniary and were not entitled to protection from mere negligence. The court explained that the breach of duties alleged by Long arose solely from the automobile contract and therefore Long's claim amounted to a breach of contract and not a viable claim for negligence (Long v. Jim Letts Oldsmobile, Inc., 1975).
This case illustrates the application of the Economic Loss Rule in Georgia. The decision reinforced the dichotomy between that which is actionable in tort with its attendant damages and that which is actionable in contract with damages that are limited and not as expansive as tort damages. This paper will explore the Georgia Economic Loss Rule and its impact on the recovery of damages in products and services cases.
TORT AND CONTRACT
In Georgia "A tort is the unlawful violation of a private legal right other than a mere breach of contract, express or implied" (Ga. Code: Torts--General Provisions, 1933). The terms "tort" and "trespass" are interchangeable (Southern Ry. Co. v. City of Rome, 1934). A tort is a legal wrong committed upon the person or property of another independently of contract (Rawls Bros. Co. v. Paul, 1967).
On the other hand, in Georgia "A contract is an agreement between two or more parties for the doing or not doing of some specified thing" (Ga. Code: Contracts--General Provisions, 1933). An action in tort will not be permitted for a mere breach of contract, even if the breach was negligent or willful (A.L. Williams & Associates, Inc. v. Faircloth, 1989).
MEASURE OF DAMAGES DISTINGUISHED
The measure of damages for tort is different from an action based upon a contract. Tort damages have been defined in Georgia as "a pecuniary compensation or indemnity, which may be recovered in the courts by any person who has suffered loss, detriment, or injury, whether to his person, property or rights, through the unlawful act or omission or negligence of another" (Hertz & Link, 2004). The object of tort damages is to place the injured party, as far as money can do it, in the situation the party would have occupied had the wrong not been committed (Olsen & Company, Inc. v. Lunsford, 1959). Tort damages are more far reaching than damages for breach of contract. In tort, the wrongdoer is liable for all consequences which naturally flow from his wrongful act, provided only that they be not too remote (Carr & Co. v. Southern Railway Co., 1913). In fact, Georgia statutes authorize tort damages in cases "in which the entire injury is to the peace, happiness, or feelings of the plaintiff" (Ga. Code: Torts--Damages, 1987). Therefore tort damages can include compensation for mental pain and anguish and the broad measure of such mental anguish damages is limited only by the enlightened conscience of impartial jurors (Waldrip v. Voyles, 1991).
By contrast, damages for breach of contract in Georgia are limited to those damages which arise either naturally according to the usual course of things from the breach or may reasonably have been in contemplation of both the parties at the time they entered into the contract (Stewart v. The Lanier House Company, 1885). In short, damages for breach of contract must be those that can be traced solely to the breach, must be capable of exact computation, must have arisen naturally and according to the usual course of things from such breach, and must be such as the parties contemplated as a probable result of the breach (Sanford-Brown Company v. Patent Scaffolding Company, Inc., 1945). Therefore, in a contract action no element of damages is recoverable unless it can reasonably be considered to have been within the contemplation of the parties at the time they entered into the contract. In actions in tort, however, the wrongdoer is liable for all consequences which naturally follow from his wrongful act and it is immaterial that such damages were not within the contemplation of the parties (Olsen & Company, Inc. v. Lunsford, 1959). In other words "foresight and hindsight respectively furnish the key to the question of the extent of liability in the respective fields of contract and tort." (Carr & Co. v. Southern Railway Co., 1913). In tort: "It is the unexpected, rather that the expected, that happens in the great majority of the cases of negligence" (Horwitz v. Teague, 1948). Damages in tort, then, can be higher than damages for breach of contract because of the very definite difference generally recognized by the courts between the two theories of action (Bennett v. Tucker & Pennington, 1924).
THE GEORGIA ECONOMIC LOSS RULE
The Georgia Economic Loss Rule is a judge-made rule, not a statute, which bars purchasers of goods and services from asserting negligence on the part of the provider or manufacturer as a basis upon which to recover purely economic losses caused when the goods or services are defective and fail.
In Holloman v. D. R. Horton, Inc. (1999) the Georgia Court of Appeals stated the rule thusly: "The economic loss rule provides that absent personal injury or damage to property other than to the allegedly defective product itself an action in negligence does not lie and any such cause of action may be brought only as a contract warranty action. The rationale underlying this rule is that when a defective product has resulted in the loss of the value or use of the product itself, or the cost of repairing it, the plaintiff is merely suing for the benefit of his bargain." Therefore, the economic loss rule, when applicable, bars claims for damages for such items as repair or replacement and interruption of business (Alco Standard Corporation v. Westinghouse Electric Corporation, 1992). In Bates & Associates, Inc. v. Romei (1993), a case involving services (defective shop drawings), the Georgia Court of Appeals discussed the rule in more detail and explained: "The Georgia 'economic loss rule' in essence prevents recovery in tort when a defective product has resulted in the loss of the value or use of the thing sold or the cost of repairing it. Under such circumstances, the duty breached is generally a contractual one and the plaintiff is merely suing for the benefit of his bargain. The rule does not prevent a tort action to recover for injury to persons or to property other than the product itself, because the duty breached in such situations generally arises independent of the contract."
The purpose for the economic loss rule is to retain a separation between that which is contract-like with duties arising from agreement with attendant benefit-of-the-bargain attributes and that in which the duty is imposed by general law proscribing an unreasonable violation of the rights of others. The effort to retain a separation between contract and tort in the context of the economic loss rule has been criticized in Georgia and elsewhere. One Georgia scholar has written that the courts have been unsuccessful in drawing the line between contract and tort (Ribstein, L.E., 1979). Nevertheless, the courts of Georgia have continued to strive for the separation between contract and tort and retain the efficacy of the economic loss rule (General Electric Company v. Lowe's Home Centers, Inc., 2005).
One consequence of the economic loss rule, then, is to encourage buyers of goods and services to assure that they have adequate remedies under the contract with the seller or provider for compensation in the event the goods or services are defective. If the buyer makes a bad bargain and has failed to provide for a contractual remedy in the event the goods or services prove defective then he must absorb the loss because an action for negligence will be barred by the economic loss rule. For example, On June 1, 1996, Bernard Foster purchased a new Dodge Ram pick-up truck from a Chrysler dealership. Though the truck remained in Foster's name, Charles Busbee began using the truck exclusively in return for making the finance payments. In February 1997, the truck engine seized and stranded Busbee on the highway. Busbee sued Chrysler for the loss of use of the truck claiming that Chrysler was strictly liable in tort for selling a defective product. The court held that the economic loss rule barred Busbee's claim for loss of use of the truck. The court, citing Georgia precedent, stated: "The Georgia 'economic loss rule' in essence prevents recovery in tort when a defective product has resulted in the loss of the value or use of the thing sold, or the cost of repairing it. Such economic losses are not recoverable under strict liability or negligence theories." The new car warranty did not apply to Busbee because Foster was the record purchaser of the truck. Busbee had no remedy because the economic loss rule barred his tort action (Busbee v. Chrysler Corporation, 1999).
In another case illustrating application of the economic loss rule, Flintkote purchased a ship unloader from Draco in 1966 and used it until April, 1978, when the unloader twisted and bent. No personal injuries or damage to other property resulted from this event but the unloader was made inoperable and required $252,000 to repair it. Flintkote sued Draco for negligence in the design, fabrication and erection of the unloader and demanded damages for the repair costs and the cost of the loss of use of the unloader during the time necessary to repair it. Draco defended the claim by asserting that Flinkkote could not recover for purely economic losses in a negligence action and that relief could only be obtained under the law of contract. The federal court applying Georgia law held that Flintkote was barred by the economic loss rule from recovering its repair costs and loss of use, purely economic losses, in tort. The statute of limitations had run on the contract and therefore Flintkote had no remedy for its losses because of the application of the economic loss rule (Flinkote Company v. Dravo Corporation, 1982).
By its very terms, the economic loss rule will not bar a negligence action against a provider of goods or services when the defective product or service causes damage to property other than the defective property itself. The consumer may recover damages in negligence for damage to other property but not the property or services provided by the defendant. For example, in a building construction case involving roof support components, the building owner sued the components manufacturer for supplying defective roof support products and for damages that those components caused to other materials comprising the building when the roof collapsed. The court held that under the economic loss rule the owner could not recover purely economic damages for the defective components supplied by the manufacturer. However, the owner was permitted to recover for damage that those defective components caused to other property comprising the building. In that case the roof of the building was damaged due to inadequate strength of the manufacturer's components and recovery would be allowed in an action sounding in negligence for economic damages associated with the repair of the roof but not for repair or replacement of the defective components themselves (Mike Bajalia, Inc. v. Amos Construction Company, Inc., 1977).
THE UNITED STATES SUPREME COURT RATIONALE
In East River Steamship Corp v. Transamerica Delaval, Inc. (1986) the United States Supreme Court decided an admiralty case sounding in tort products liability. In that case, a shipbuilder entered into a contract with Delaval to design, manufacture and supervise the installation of turbines that would be the main propulsion units for four supertankers being constructed by the shipbuilder. When the ships were put into service the turbines on all four ships malfunctioned due to design and manufacturing defects. Each supertanker's defectively designed turbine components damaged only the turbine itself. The ship-owners sued Delaval in tort for products liability for more than $8 million in damages for the cost of repairing the ships and for income lost while the ships were out of service. The issue framed by the Court was "whether a cause of action in tort is stated when a defective product purchased in a commercial transaction malfunctions, injuring only the product itself and causing purely economic loss?" A unanimous Court answered the issue "No". The Court reasoned that preserving a proper role for the law of contract precluded imposing tort liability where a defective product causes purely monetary harm. Despite decisions to the contrary in state and federal courts the Supreme Court found that the rationale for permitting tort actions for recovery of purely pecuniary losses resulting from damage only to the subject of the sales contract to be unsatisfactory. Because the harm in all such cases was only to the product itself the Court reasoned that the resulting losses for repair costs, decreased value, and lost profits was essentially the failure of the purchaser of the product to receive the benefit of the bargain, an issue traditionally the core concern of contract law. The Court reasoned that the views held in decisions permitting tort treatment of the injury failed to account for the need to keep products liability and contract law in separate spheres and to maintain a realistic limitation on damages. The Supreme Court held that a manufacturer in a commercial relationship had no duty under either a negligence or strict products liability theory to prevent a product from injuring itself. The Court quoted from Seely v. White Motor Co. (1965), a California case, in explaining its reasoning as follows: "The distinction that the law has drawn between tort recovery for physical injuries and warranty recovery for economic loss is not arbitrary and does not rest on the 'luck' of one plaintiff in having an accident causing physical injury. The distinction rests, rather, on an understanding of the nature of the responsibility a manufacturer must undertake in distributing his products". The Court opined that when a product injures only itself the reasons for imposing a tort duty are weak and those for leaving the party to its contractual remedies are strong. The tort concern with safety is reduced when an injury is only to the product itself. When a product injures itself the commercial user stands to lose the value of the product, risks the displeasure of its customers who find that the product does not meet their needs, or as in the case at bar, experiences increased costs in performing a service. Losses like these can be insured. The Court concluded that contract law, and the law of warranty in particular, was well suited to commercial controversies of the sort involved in the case at bar because the parties may set the terms of their own agreements. Under such circumstances, the manufacturer can restrict its liability, within limits, by disclaiming warranties or limiting remedies. In exchange, the purchaser may pay less for the product. Recovery on a warranty theory would give the ship-owners their repair costs and lost profits and would place them in the position they would have been in had the turbines functioned properly. In contrast, tort damages generally compensate the plaintiff for loss and return him to the position he occupied before the injury. A warranty action also has a built-in limitation on liability whereas a tort action could subject the manufacturer to damages of an indefinite amount. The limitation in a contract action comes from the agreement of the parties and the requirement that consequential damages, such as lost profits, be a foreseeable result of the breach (Citing Hadley v. Baxendale, (1854), which is also cited in Georgia's landmark contract damages case styled Stewart v. The Lanier House Company, (1885). In justifying its decision in a broad economic sense, the Court reasoned that permitting recovery in tort for injury only to the product itself for all foreseeable claims for purely economic loss could expose a manufacturer to liability for vast sums especially for potential claims of persons downstream who may encounter its product. Thus, concluded the Court, a separation of that which is recoverable for breach of contract and that which may be redressed in tort must be maintained.
EXCEPTIONS TO THE GEORGIA ECONOMIC LOSS RULE.
Georgia courts and federal courts applying Georgia law have recognized four common law exceptions to the economic loss rule. The exceptions permit a tort action despite the underlying contractual nature of the cases. The exceptions are identified as (a) The accident exception; (b) The negligent construction exception; (c) The negligent misrepresentation exception; and (d) Asbestos-Hazardous Product exception. These exceptions to the economic loss rule and their rationale are discussed below.
The Accident Exception.
As stated above, the essence of the economic loss rule is that claims for damages resulting from a defective product or service where the injury is solely to the product or service itself are limited to contract warranty actions and consequent damages limitations. In short, when the economic loss rule applies, warranty is the appropriate cause of action. However, where the product or service fails in a sudden and calamitous event, and even though damages result only to the product or service itself, the economic loss rule will not bar a negligence action. The rationale for this exception is that the product or service, by failing in a calamitous way, posed an unreasonable risk of injury to persons or to other property which are events traditionally redressed in a tort action. This exception in Georgia is vividly illustrated in the Georgia Supreme Court opinion in Vulcan Materials Co., Inc. v. Driltech, Inc. (1983). In this case, the defendant manufacturer supplied a drilling machine to the plaintiff buyer. During its operation, a component part in the drill fractured releasing a spray of hydraulic fluid. The fluid ignited and the drill machine burst into flames. The drill operator managed to escape without injury but the drill machine was damaged beyond repair. Despite this harrowing episode the fire caused no personal injury or damage to property other than to the drill itself. The plaintiff buyer sued the manufacturer in federal court for compensation for the loss of use of the drill under a negligence theory. The trial court decided that the negligence claim was barred by the Georgia economic loss rule because the loss was only to the product itself and no personal injury or other property damage occurred. The buyer appealed. The federal appeals court certified a question to the Georgia Supreme Court asking whether Georgia recognized an accident exception to its economic loss rule. The Georgia Supreme Court replied in the affirmative. The Georgia Supreme Court reasoned that warranty remedies were designed to provide benefit of the bargain damages to a buyer's disappointed expectations when a defect renders a product inferior or unable to adequately perform its intended function. Tort remedies, however, are more appropriate to redress product or service failure when the product or service poses an unreasonable risk of injury to persons or other property. Therefore, when the event signaling the failure of the product or service is sudden and calamitous and could have injured person or property, other than the item itself, then the economic loss rule will not bar an action sounding in tort.
The negligent construction exception.
The Georgia courts have also decided that the economic loss rule will not bar an action sounding in tort for claims for negligent building construction despite the fact that the damage is only to the building itself (Fussell v. Carl E. Jones Development Company, Inc., 1993). The rationale for this exception is that building construction negligence is an independent and common law tort that exists separately from any contract between the builder and the property owner. A negligent construction claim, then, is not grounded in contract but springs from an implied common law duty that the builder perform the construction work in accordance with industry standards. Under this rationale, then, the economic loss rule is not implicated in a building construction case and the property owner may pursue both breach of warranty and inconsistent negligence claims until complete satisfaction is obtained (Rowe v. Akin & Flanders, Inc., 1999).
The negligent misrepresentation exception.
The Georgia courts have decided unequivocally that the economic loss rule will not bar a tort claim where there is fraud or passive concealment of a material fact even though a defect only caused damage to the product or service itself and no personal injury or other property damage resulted (Holloman v. D.R. Horton, Inc., 1999). This exception has been engrafted upon the economic loss rule in Georgia even though it is not an exception to the economic loss rule as applied in other states such as neighboring Florida (Young v. W.S. Badcock Corporation, 1996). The negligent misrepresentation exception is implicated when the seller of the product or service has failed to disclose a material fact or supplies false information about the product or service that has failed due to a defect even though there is no accident and no physical damage to other property or person (Smiley v. S & J Investments, Inc., 2003). This exception is well illustrated by the case of Holloman v. D.R. Horton, Inc. (1999). In Holloman the court decided a dispute between a dissatisfied customer and a homebuilder in an action for negligent construction. The homebuyer contended that the homebuilder was aware of numerous deficiencies in the construction of the dwelling and failed to disclose these deficiencies to the buyer. The deficiencies and defects in construction related only to the dwelling itself and did not result in injury or damage to persons or other property. The homebuilder asserted that the homebuyer's negligent construction claim was barred by the economic loss rule. The court decided that the economic loss rule would not apply to this case and bar the home-buyer's claim of negligence because of the existence of the homebuilder's passive concealment of the construction defects. The court held that the homebuilder, while engaged in his profession, supplied information about the home to the buyers and owed a duty of reasonable care to them. Here, the homebuilder was charged with notice of the construction defects and his failure to disclose them to the buyers amounted to passive concealment and a breach of the duty of reasonable care. The court asserted that the misrepresentation exception to the economic loss rule was no more than an affirmation of the principles of passive concealment or plain fraud and that the economic loss rule would not apply in the presence of passive concealment or fraud.
The Asbestos-Hazardous Product exception.
Mercer University brought a negligence property damage action against numerous defendants, including National Gypsum Company, in federal district court alleging that the defendant manufactured asbestos-containing products which were placed in Mercer's buildings and had to be removed because they posed a serious health hazard. Mercer demanded damages for the cost of removing the defendant's products from its buildings. The defendant argued that the negligence claim was barred by Georgia's economic loss rule. Application of the economic loss rule would preclude Mercer from recovering most of its damages since the defect was only to the asbestos-containing products themselves and there was no significant damage to other property or to persons. The district court held that the economic loss rule would not bar Mercer's negligence claim. The court reasoned that Mercer's claim did not involve dissatisfaction with the product because of a defect affecting the product's performance but rather involved an allegation that the presence of such products in its buildings presented an unreasonable personal health risk. The court determined that the nature of the defect complained of was not the quality of the product but was an issue of safety, possible personal injury, and a hazardous product. The court decided that contract warranty law was not suited to correct problems of hazardous products that can cause personal injuries. The court observed that tort law imposes on manufacturers a duty to produce safe products. Therefore, the court decided that the rationale for the economic loss rule was absent from this claim and that the rule would not bar claims for damages associated with hazardous products. The court also noted that courts in other states that apply the economic loss rule have uniformly held that a school's cost in removing asbestos-containing products from its buildings are recoverable in negligence actions. Although this decision was reversed on other grounds the hazardous product exception to the economic loss rule has not been addressed in any subsequent cases and the analysis made in this case is more likely than not to remain the law in Georgia (Corporation of Mercer University v. National Gypsum Company, 1986).
SUMMARY AND IMPLICATIONS
The economic loss rule provides that absent personal injury or damage to property other than to the allegedly defective product itself an action in negligence will not lie and any such cause of action may be brought only as a breach of contract warranty action. The rationale underlying this rule is that when a defective product has resulted in the loss of the value or use of the product itself, or the cost of repairing it, the plaintiff is merely suing for the benefit of his bargain. The economic loss rule does not bar tort actions for damages for injuries to persons or other property that were caused by the defective product of service.
Parties acquiring products and contracting for services, then, must assure that adequate protections are in place in the contract for redressing damages arising out of the failure of the product or shortcomings in the rendering of the services. If the product proves to be defective and fails without causing injury to persons or other property then the purchaser will be limited to those damages contemplated by the parties at the inception of the contract. That is, damages for breach of contract. Likewise, if services are flawed and cause damages without damage to person or property then the plaintiff will be limited to only contract damages and not the expansive damages permitted in a negligence action.
The analysis made here reveals that, so far, the economic loss rule has been one of limited application in the state. However, when the rule has been applied it has shown to have had a devastating effect upon the plaintiff's case. The rule is most deadly when a defective product is out of warranty or when the contract statute of limitations has run on the defective goods or services. In such cases, negligent manufacture or negligent workmanship may be the only causes of action remaining. The economic loss rule will bar those actions where only the product or service fails without injury to person or other property. Buyers of products and clients for services understanding the remedy limitations imposed by the economic loss rule may be wise to hedge the risks for the potential costs of repair or replacement and for downtime and loss of use by acquiring insurance to compensate for such risks.
Alco Standard Corporation v. Westinghouse Electric Corporation, 426 S.E.2d 648 (Ga.App. 1992).
A.L. Williams & Associates, Inc. v. Faircloth, 386 S.E.2d 151 (Ga. 1989).
Bates & Associates, Inc. v. Romei, 426 S.E.2d 919 (Ga.App. 1993).
Bennett v. Tucker & Pennington, 123 S.E. 165 (Ga.App. 1924).
Busbee v. Chrysler Corporation, 524 S.E.2d 539 (Ga.App. 1999).
Carr & Co. v. Southern Railway Co., 79 S.E. 41 (Ga.App. 1913).
Corporation of Mercer University v. National Gypsum Company, 1986 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 28425 (MD. Ga. 1986).
East River Steamship Corp v. Transamerica Delaval, Inc., 476 U.S. 858 (1986).
Flinkote Company v. Dravo Corporation, 678 F.2d 942 (11th Cir. 1982).
Fussell v. Carl E. Jones Development Company, Inc., 428 S.E.2d 426 (1993).
Hadley v. Baxendale, 9 Ex. 341, 156 Eng. Rep. 145 (1854).
Ga. Code: Contracts--General Provisions, O.C.G.A. [section] 13-1-1 (1933).
Ga. Code: Torts--Damages, O.C.G.A. [section] 51-12-6 (1987).
Ga. Code: Torts--General Provisions, O.C.G.A. [section] 51-1-1 (1933).
General Electric Company v. Lowe's Home Centers, Inc., 608 S.E.2d 636 (Ga. 2005).
Hertz, E.J. & Link, M.D. (2004). Georgia Law of Damages. Cincinnati, Oh: Thompson.
Holloman v. D. R. Horton, Inc., 524 S.E.2d 790 (Ga.App. 1999).
Horwitz v. Teague, 48 S.E.2d 697 (Ga.App. 1948).
Long v. Jim Letts Oldsmobile, Inc., 217 S.E.2d 602 (Ga.App. 1975).
Mike Bajalia, Inc. v. Amos Construction Company, Inc., 235 S.E.2d 664 (Ga.App.1977).
Olsen & Company, Inc. v. Lunsford, 108 S.E.2d 304 (Ga.App. 1959).
Rawls Bros. Co. v. Paul, 127 S.E.2d 819 (1962).
Ribstein, L.E. (1978). Tort and Contract in Georgia. Mercer Law Review, 30 (1), 303-317.
Rowe v. Akin & Flanders, Inc., 525 S.E.2d 123 (Ga.App. 1999).
Sanford-Brown Company v. Patent Scaffolding Company, Inc., 33. S.E.2d 422 (Ga.1945).
Seely v. White Motor Co., 403 P.2d 145 (Ca. 1965).
Smiley v. S & J Investments, Inc., 580 S.E.2d 283 (Ga.App. 2003).
Southern Ry. Co. v. City of Rome, 177 S.E. 520 (Ga. 1934).
Stewart v. The Lanier House Company, 75 Ga. 582 (Ga. 1885).
Vulcan Materials Co., Inc. v. Driltech, Inc., 306 S.E.2d 253 (1983).
Waldrip v. Voyles, 411 S.E.2d 765 (Ga.App. 1991).
Young v. W.S. Badcock Corporation, 474 S.E.2d 87 (Ga.App. 1996).
John Hoft, Columbus State University…