Hannula v. Ramey, 71290

CourtUnited States Court of Appeals (Georgia)
Writing for the CourtDEEN
Citation339 S.E.2d 735,177 Ga.App. 512
PartiesHANNULA v. RAMEY et al.
Docket NumberNo. 71290,71290
Decision Date06 January 1986

Page 735

339 S.E.2d 735
177 Ga.App. 512

RAMEY et al.
No. 71290.
Court of Appeals of Georgia.
Jan. 6, 1986.
Rehearing Denied Jan. 22, 1986.

[177 Ga.App. 514] Charles M. Cork III, Macon, Clifford E. Alexander, Roswell, for appellant.

Page 736

William S. Goodman, Atlanta, William D. Temple, William D. Strickland, Decatur, Judy F. Aust, Atlanta, for appellees.

[177 Ga.App. 512] DEEN, Presiding Judge.

Cheryl Hannula received neck injuries in an automobile collision while riding as a passenger in a car driven by Kimberly Waylen. Ms. Waylen's vehicle made a left turn at an intersection against a red light and collided with a truck driven by William Ramey. Judith Hannula, Cheryl's mother, brought suit on her daughter's behalf against Waylen and Ramey, seeking to recover damages for the injuries sustained by her daughter. The jury returned a verdict which awarded the plaintiff $500 from Ramey and $25,000 plus $7,213 in medical expenses from Waylen. The court instructed the jury that verdicts cannot be apportioned between defendants and asked it to retire and draft a new verdict. Before the jury returned, plaintiff's counsel attempted to file a voluntary dismissal. Waylen's counsel objected on the grounds that the verdict was published in open court when the court asked opposing counsel to read it and he was thereby informed of the jury's intention as to the amount of the award. The trial court held it would not allow the dismissal and denied the motion pursuant to OCGA § 9-11-41. It found that a verdict had been reached although it was not correct as to form, and that the case had been decided on its merits. The jury returned a verdict awarding the plaintiff $25,500 in damages plus $7,213 in medical expenses against Waylen. Plaintiff's motion to vacate the judgment and enter a dismissal without prejudice and, in the alternative, for a new trial were denied. This appeal followed.

1. Appellant contends that the trial court erred in refusing to give effect to its notice of voluntary dismissal which was filed prior to the return of a legal verdict and in denying its post-trial motions.

Before July 1, 1985, plaintiffs could dismiss an action without order of court by filing a written notice of dismissal any time before verdict. OCGA § 9-11-41(a). "[O]nce a judgment in a civil case has been announced though not formally entered, the attempted filing of a voluntary dismissal thereafter is not permissible and does not effect a dismissal." Jones v. Burton, 238 Ga. 394, 395, 233 S.E.2d 367 (1977). "[T]he plaintiff's right to dismiss can...

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  • U.S. Fidelity & Guar. Co., Inc. v. Paul Associates, Inc., s. A98A0179
    • United States
    • United States Court of Appeals (Georgia)
    • January 16, 1998
    ...of ordinary care. Southern Bell Tel., etc., Co. v. Don Hammond, Inc., 198 Page 289 Ga.App. 517, 402 S.E.2d 112 (1991); Hannula v. Ramey, 177 Ga.App. 512, 339 S.E.2d 735 (1986); Thico Plan, Inc. v. Ashkouti, 171 Ga.App. 536, 320 S.E.2d 604 (1984); Butler v. Anderson,[230 Ga.App. 248] 163 Ga.......
  • Washington v. State
    • United States
    • United States Court of Appeals (Georgia)
    • July 16, 2015
    ...verdict, but to the publication of the verdict that occurs when it is subsequently read aloud by the clerk. See, e.g., Hannula v. Ramey, 177 Ga.App. 512, 513(1), 339 S.E.2d 735 (1986). While the use of the word “publish” to describe both the jury's delivery of its verdict to the court and t......
  • Oller v. State, 76449
    • United States
    • United States Court of Appeals (Georgia)
    • July 13, 1988
    ...the notification one day before filing it. The judge may permit papers to be filed with him. OCGA § 9-11-5(e); see Hannula v. Ramey, 177 Ga.App. 512, 513(1), 339 S.E.2d 735 (1986). Although the Page 462 judge did not note the date on the document, he established such in the record. Since th......
  • CSX Transp., Inc. v. McCord, A91A2140
    • United States
    • United States Court of Appeals (Georgia)
    • December 5, 1991
    ...authorizing the charge on automatic couplers, the trial court did not err in presenting this issue to the jury. Hannula v. Ramey, 177 Ga.App. 512, 513(2), 339 S.E.2d Defendant's sole objection to the charge at issue was that it was not authorized by the evidence. Therefore, no issue as to t......
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