The American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA) has appointed S. Lester Tate III as treasurer for its national association. 

Photo Credit: American Board of Trial Advocates

ABOTA is an invitation-only organization with over 7,300 member lawyers and judges, spread among 96 chapters in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

“It’s a great honor to be chosen by my fellow members to be a national officer for this outstanding organization,” Tate commented.

“I look forward to advancing the Association’s mission to promote and improve the American civil justice system and to preserve the Seventh Amendment right to civil jury trials for future generations,” Tate added.

Most recently, Tate served as president of the Southeast Region of ABOTA in 2021.

With the warmer weather comes increased ridership of motorcycles throughout the Atlanta area and the state of Georgia. The motorcycle accident team of Akin & Tate reminds everyone that the National Safety Council has declared May to be Motorcycle Safety Month. Please be alert, and please share the road with motorcyclists. 

In 2017 there were over 89,000 motorcycle accidents with injuries in the United States. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), motorcyclists were nearly 29 times more likely than passenger car occupants to die in a crash per vehicle miles traveled.

Driver error is a factor
The primary reason for motorcycle accidents in Atlanta was driver error, particularly when combined with the sleek design of motorcycles that makes them less visible to other drivers and pedestrians. It is the obligation of all drivers to be aware of their surroundings and check blind spots, particularly when making lane changes. Motorcyclists are at particular risk of a driver error involving lane changes due to lower visibility of the frame of a motorcycle.

Another contributing factor to motorcycle accident injuries and fatalities is distracted driving on the part of automobile and truck drivers. Any activity diverting attention from driving, including texting, is a distraction. Sending or reading a text takes your eyes off the road for five seconds. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), at 55 mph, that’s like driving the length of an entire football field with your eyes closed.

How you an observe #MotorcycleSafetyAwarenessMonth

Motorcycle Accident – Call Akin & Tate
If you have suffered an injury in a motorcycle accident due to the negligence of others, call the motorcycle accident attorneys at Akin & Tate. You could be entitled to a monetary award.

Free case review.
Our personal injury attorneys at Akin & Tate have extensive experience pursuing negligence claims involving motorcycle accidents. We will review your case and advise you on your right to seek compensation for your injuries.

No fee unless you win.
We work on a contingency fee basis. You owe nothing unless we obtain a favorable settlement or judgment on your behalf.

Motorcycle accident questions? 
Our motorcycle accident legal team has answers.

When people think of Atlanta auto accident lawyers, Akin & Tate is the personal injury law firm they turn to for help. Our experienced trial lawyers have seen first-hand the devastation resulting from auto and truck accidents. In many of these cases, the common theme is – distracted driving.

Recent studies have confirmed what many of us already may know, distracted driving is a growing problem on our roadways. Roughly 20% of injuries occurring in car accident crashes involve distracted driving, according to a study published by The Zebra.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Council defines distracted driving as “Any activity that diverts attention from driving…anything that takes your attention away from the task of safe driving.” It can be texting, drinking coffee, or even looking at your neighbor’s holiday light display. Any loss of focus required for safe driving is considered distracted driving.

So, how about you? Does this sound familiar? According to the American Automobile Association (AAA), a driver is eight times more likely to be involved in a crash while eating and drinking. 

The recent increase in cell phone use also has resulted in more distracted driving. The convenience and ease of texting are very appealing while driving, with many thinking it will only take a second to complete the exchange. However, texting is the cause of more than 58% of crashes involving teen drivers. 

Sending or reading a text takes your eyes off the road for 5 seconds. At 55 mph, that’s like driving the length of an entire football field with your eyes closed.

National Highway Traffic Safety Council

Our entire team at Akin & Tate is dedicated to helping bring attention to the fight to end distracted driving by promoting this important cause in our community. We can all do our part by practicing safe driving habits and focusing our attention on the road. We can also be a voice of education in every community from Atlanta to Cartersville and throughout Georgia.

As Atlanta’s personal injury attorneys, our entire staff at Akin & Tate is well recognized for our work in and out of the courtroom on behalf of victims injured due to the negligence of distracted drivers. If a distracted driver has hurt you, contact us immediately. Akin & Tate’s car accident lawyers are here to help. Call us at 770-382-0780 for a free case evaluation today.

A judge threw out a misdemeanor charge against state Rep. Trey Kelley on Tuesday, ruling that his failure to call 911 in response to a fatal crash wasn’t reckless conduct.

Senior Superior Court Judge Stephen Schuster dismissed the indictment against Kelley, a Republican from Cedartown, that stemmed from his friend’s collision with a bicyclist in Polk County two years ago…

Read Full Article at The Atlanta Journal Constitution

On Thursday, September 7, 2017, the Atlanta-based credit bureau, Equifax, announced that hackers had potentially compromised the sensitive information of 143 million American consumers from a cyberattack that occurred between May and July of 2017. With Social Security numbers, driver’s license numbers, credit card information, addresses, and birthdates exposed to potential identity thieves, the Equifax data breach has affected an estimated 44% of the American population—meaning that you might be one of the millions of Americans affected by this data breach and eligible for a cash settlement.

With the recent surge of consumer worry regarding the Equifax data breach, they have introduced a temporary solution: the company is offering a one-year trial of its TrustedID product, providing the opportunity to sign-up for free identity theft protection and credit file monitoring on its website. However, there’s a catch. By registering for this product and agreeing to TrustedID Premier’s lengthy terms of service, customers are forfeiting their right to join a class action lawsuit in a court of law and right to a jury trial in exchange for use of the credit protection product, and after the one-year trial-period, customers will be charged “an unspecified amount” unless they go through with the cancellation process.


The same day the cyberattack was announced, a class action lawsuit against Equifax was filed in federal court in Atlanta. The federal class action lawsuit claims that Equifax executives sold “hundreds of thousands of dollars in stock” prior to going public with the data breach and seeks “as-yet-unspecified damages for negligence, violations of federal Fair Credit Reporting Act laws and Georgia’s Fair Business Practices Act statutes”

Akin & Tate has experience in major national class action law suits concerning data breaches, with attorney W. Matthew Wilson serving as part of the leadership team in the class actions against Home Depot’s 2014 major national data breach. In that suit, he helped recover $27 million on behalf of customers included in this settlement. Contact Akin & Tate today if you are a victim of the 2017 Equifax data breach.CONTACT AKIN & TATE.

To determine if you’re one of the millions of Americans affected by the 2017 Equifax data breach and entitled to a settlement award, please click here and fill out the brief form.

It seems like for the past month, you turn on the television or the computer, and you see news of shootings and protests and counter-protests and political divisions where folks on different sides paint very different pictures of what is going on,” he said. “You wonder if we live in a country where we can’t agree on anything anymore. It seems like we can’t even agree on three words. The Clinton and Trump camps have their three words. One says, ‘I’m with her,’ while the other says, ‘I’m with you.’ But there are still three words I think we can all agree on when we, as we did a few minutes ago, recite the Pledge of Allegiance and end it with ‘justice for all.’”

Reblogged from myfoxatlanta.com


It’s been three years since Tony Collum was shot by Mark Harris.

In June 2012, Harris was arrested and charged with multiple felonies after the two men got into an argument that turned violent at Harris’s Cartersville home.

“I’m glad the trial’s over,” said Collum, “I didn’t go to the closings, I didn’t go to the verdict, I’ve actually gone on with my life and glad to be alive.”

On Wednesday, a Bartow County jury found Harris not guilty on all charges related to the shooting.

“When I talked to Mark today, it’s really just one of relief, and wanting to get back into his life, and do the things that he wants to do,” said Lester Tate, Harris’s attorney who spoke on behalf of Harris because he was out of town.

“Our sole defense in the entire trial was the defense of justification,” said Tate, “that was that he was, under the circumstances presented to him, entitled to use deadly force to protect himself and his son.”

In 2012, FOX 5 News spoke with Collum just days after the shooting.

At the time, he said his 15-year-old daughter had come home one night high on drugs. Collum said she told him she got the drugs from Harris’s 17-year-old son Parker Harris.

Police charged Parker after finding less than one ounce of marijuana and drug-related items in the family home.

Collum said he went to Harris’s house and said a civil discussion between the two men turned violent, ending with Collum being shot twice.

“No matter what happened to me, I really think that I was lucky,” said Collum, “I’m glad to be alive, but I think parents should still be proactive.”

And Attorney Tate said a verdict like this should send a message to all Georgians.

“It certainly sends a message out there that if you use a firearm in protection of your family or your home or yourself, juries are going to be sympathetic to that argument,” said Tate.

“What happens if an insurance company makes me a settlement offer?” 

Flashback Friday

This plaque honoring Warren Akin I is near the railroad depot in Downtown Cartersville, and he certainly made headlines in his day. Here, he’s called a “lawyer-minister-politician.” The elder Akin began practicing law in 1836 and argued the first case before the Georgia Supreme Court in 1848. He was an ordained Methodist minister and a Trustee of Emory College. From 1861 to 1863, he served as Speaker of the Georgia House of Representatives and as Confederate Congressman from 1864 to the end of the Civil War.

We’re happy to talk to folks initially without any charge or any type of obligation on their behalf

Lester Tate, Akin & Tate.