"Jeb Murray and Robert Mangum Discuss Key Considerations for Out-of-State Businesses Handling Litigation in Georgia"

Posted On September 11, 2019

In an article published on September 9, 2019, Jeb Murray and Robert Mangum unpack several important facets of Georgia law for out-of-state companies transacting business in the state to effectively and efficiently handle litigation.

Georgia law requires all foreign LLCs and corporations to register with the secretary of state in order to transact business in Georgia and bring litigation within the state under Georgia law. “Thus, any out-of-state company seeking to do business in Georgia should first register with the secretary of state, if for no other reason than to avoid the penalties associated with transacting business in the state without being registered and to preserve the right to litigate, should issues arise.”

It is also crucial for foreign LLCs and corporations maintain accurate business information with the secretary of state as Georgia law allows for plaintiffs to serve a summons to foreign businesses based on the information provided through the secretary of state, which could ultimately cause litigation papers to be delivered to the last known primary address of the company. Once the papers are delivered, the 30-day clock to answer the plaintiff’s complaint starts, regardless of whether the foreign company officially receives the complaint.

Additionally, out-of-state companies should be aware of Georgia’s favorable provisions on attorney’s fees, which can be used to the company’s advantage in litigation. Foreign companies conducting business in Georgia should also note the recent development in Georgia law permitting a statewide Business Court to be established, which will begin hearing cases in August 2020.

“For out-of-state companies hoping to do business in Georgia, these tips on Georgia law should be ever-present in the minds of their counsel. By acknowledging these quirks of Georgia law, foreign companies operating in Georgia can avoid litigation pitfalls and maximize their own litigations experiences from recovery and efficiency standpoints.”

To read the full article, please click here.