2022 Georgia Code
Title 51 - Torts
Chapter 1 - General Provisions
§ 51-1-4. Slight Diligence and Gross Negligence Defined

Universal Citation: GA Code § 51-1-4 (2022)

In general, slight diligence is that degree of care which every man of common sense, however inattentive he may be, exercises under the same or similar circumstances. As applied to the preservation of property, the term “slight diligence” means that care which every man of common sense, however inattentive he may be, takes of his own property. The absence of such care is termed gross negligence.

History. Orig. Code 1863, § 2036; Code 1868, § 2037; Code 1873, § 2063; Code 1882, § 2063; Civil Code 1895, § 2900; Civil Code 1910, § 3473; Code 1933, § 105-203.

History of Code section.

The language of this Code section is derived in part from the decision in Harris v. Reid, 30 Ga. App. 187 , 117 S.E. 256 (1923).

Law reviews.

For article, “The Georgia Jury and Negligence: The View from the Bench,” see 26 Ga. L. Rev. 85 (1992).

For article, “Georgia Law Needs Clarification: Does it Take Willful or Wanton Misconduct to Defeat a Contractual ‘Exculpatory’ Clause, or Will Gross Negligence Suffice,” see 19 Ga. St. B. J. 10 (Feb. 2014).

For comment on Caskey v. Underwood, 89 Ga. App. 418 , 79 S.E.2d 558 (1954), finding that the lower court erred in defining gross negligence as the “entire absence of care,” see 16 Ga. B. J. 464 (1954).

For comment on Austin v. Smith, 96 Ga. App. 659 , 101 S.E.2d 169 (1958), concerning gross negligence in relation to gratuitous automobile guest, see 20 Ga. B. J. 552 (1958).

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