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An Overview of Self-Defense Laws in Georgia

Under the Constitution, every person in the United States has the right to self-defense against injury or death. It is a basic principle that people should be allowed to use force to protect themselves when necessary. But this principle is extended in certain states where “stand your ground” laws exist.

Georgia is one of several stand your ground states. This means anyone who is threatened by another person’s use of force is not legally required to back down or retreat before using force against the attacker.

In other states, stand your ground laws only apply to situations in which people are in their homes or vehicles, but in Georgia, there is no distinction regarding locations. If individuals have reasonable cause to believe they are in danger and must use force to defend themselves or another party, that use of force is justified.

Below is an overview of the state’s regulations when it comes to self-defense:

  • You may use force if you believe that force is required to protect yourself or another person against imminent use of illegal force.
  • The amount of force you may use depends on whether you can reasonably believe the type of force is necessary for your defense or the defense of another person.
  • You may only legally use deadly force if you believe such force is necessary to prevent significant bodily harm or death to you or another person, or to prevent the commission of a felony involving force.
  • You may not use deadly force if you are the initial aggressor or if you are committing, trying to commit, or leaving after having committed a felony.

Self-defense is one of the most common defense strategies in violent crime cases. To learn more about your options, meet with a trusted Georgia criminal defense attorney at James D. Michael, P.C. Give us a call at 404-857-4059 or contact us online to get started.