Berry v. Ramsey

Date: July 15, 2014
Court: Superior Court of Fulton County

HPTY filed suit on behalf of a very nice woman, an employee of a large, national hotel chain client of the firm, who several years earlier had allowed her then-boyfriend to take out a card on her credit card account while she was living in Atlanta and he was living in Florida.  The defendant was making charges to the account for travel and other expenses related to his job, and the oral agreement he had with our client was that he would get the expenses reimbursed by his employer and would pay his charges directly to the card issuer each month when they were due.  After paying his charges for two months, he stopped paying.  Eventually, he left his job and failed to submit some of the expenses for reimbursement until it was too late, and the reimbursements were rejected.  All told, he left our client holding the proverbial bag, leaving her to pay more than $40,000 in principal and accrued interest from his charges.

By the time we got the case, the plaintiff was living in Seattle and the defendant ex-boyfriend had married someone else and was living in Arizona.  The defendant hired an attorney in the Atlanta area who fought the case vigorously, and the defendant refused to pay anything.  There were problems with personal jurisdiction, venue, and the statute of limitations, as well as problems of proof with regard to the specific amount of interest and other damages, since the plaintiff and defendant commingled charges on the account.  The defendant was so confident that he would prevail on one or more of his legal defenses that he would not offer anything in settlement though he had admitted that he owed at least part of what our client was claiming.  On July 15, 2014, Martin Levinson tried the case in front of Judge T. Jackson Bedford in the Superior Court of Fulton County.  During the course of the trial, Judge Bedford accepted our arguments on all of the legal issues and awarded our client every penny of the damages she was seeking.  The court also awarded our client more than $15,000 in attorney’s fees and litigation expenses, for a total judgment of nearly $60,000.

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