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Kellos v. Sawilowsky
Georgia Supreme Court
325 S.E.2d 757 (1985)
Kellos (plaintiff) sued attorney Sawilowsky for legal malpractice. Sawilowsky filed a motion for summary judgment, contending in his affidavit that he exercised the degree of skill, prudence, and diligence that lawyers of ordinary skill and capacity exercise in the state of Georgia. Kellos opposed Sawilowsky’s motion with an affidavit of an attorney who believed that Sawilowsky failed to exercise the degree of skill, prudence, and diligence that lawyers of ordinary skill and capacity exercise in Georgia. The trial court granted Sawilowsky’s motion for summary judgment without giving a reason. Kellos appealed, and in a split decision, the court of appeals affirmed. The majority held that Kellos’s expert evidence did not create an issue of fact and that the affidavit used the standard of practice in the state of Georgia rather than in the profession generally. The Georgia Supreme Court granted certiorari to determine whether the standard of skill, prudence, and diligence of lawyers practicing in Georgia is that of the locality (i.e., the state of Georgia) or of the legal profession generally, if the standards differ.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Marshall, J.)
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