Q1. How do I file a claim with the City of Atlanta?
A1. When an individual or entity is injured or has sustained damage and it is believed that the City of Atlanta is responsible, Georgia Law mandates that a claim must be made in writing to the governing authority within six months of the event giving rise to the claim. This writing must include the date, location, parties involved, and a brief explanation of the event. In the City of Atlanta, the Atlanta City Council is the governing authority. Once a claim is filed with the Atlanta City Council, it is forwarded to the Department of Law, Claims Divisions and assigned to an Investigator who will decide based on the evidence, if the City is legally liable. If the investigation determines that the City or its employee(s) were responsible, then the Investigator will begin settlement negotiations to resolve the claim. If a settlement is reached, then the claim must be approved by the Atlanta City Council and the Mayor prior to release of the check. If the claim is denied because the investigation determined that the City was not responsible for the damages, or the parties cannot agree upon the amount of damages, the injured party may then file a lawsuit in the appropriate jurisdiction for resolution by the court system.
Q2. Where can I call to get legal assistance in Fulton County?
A2. Atlanta Legal Aid Society in Fulton County provides representation and legal advice for civil matters only. This excludes traffic, immigrations or criminal matters. 404.524.5811. The Atlanta Volunteer Lawyer's Foundation provides representation for civil cases but is limited to low income clients. 404.521.0790. The Atlanta Bar Association provides a lawyer referral service. There is a $35.00 fee to use this service. It provides the name and telephone number of a qualified attorney who has volunteered up to 30 minutes of their time to discuss your situation. If you are calling from out of state and wish to be referred to an attorney in Georgia, you must pay the fee by credit card. (Visa, Master Card or American Express). If you are unable to pay by credit card, you must speak to a consultant to make other arrangements. 404.521.0777
Q3. Where can I call to get legal assistance in Dekalb County?
A3. Atlanta Legal Aid Society in Dekalb provides assistance with family law based on gross household income. This includes child support, divorces, garnishments, repossession, evictions, foreclosures, social security issues and unemployment. This excludes any lawsuits, criminal matters or traffic violations. 404.377.0701. Dekalb Volunteer Lawyer's Foundation screens for potential eligible clients Monday through Wednesday 9 - 12 noon. There are income guidelines and case restrictions. Since this is a referral program, there are no available attorneys to give specific advice. 404.373.0865
Q4. Where can I get legal assistance if I am indigent?
A4. Georgia Indigent Defense Counsel provides services Monday through Friday from 8:30 am to 5 pm. 404.894.2595.