My question involves an injury that occurred in the state of: Georgia
As the title suggests, my car was hit by a badly hit golf ball. I was standing at the car putting my bag away with my golf buddy, talking... All of a sudden I hear the bang of the ball hitting my quarter panel to which I was standing about 1 foot away from toward the drivers side door. I slumped down and picked up the ball, jumped in the cart and went in the direction of the tee box.
When I got to the tee box, there where three players standing there, one hitting. I yell down and ask if anyone just lost a titleist with three dots marked on it. One guy identified himself as the hitter. I said, it hit my car and dented the panel and asked him if we could sort this out. He said to give him a minute and he'd be up at the club house.
A few minutes later he shows up and I show him the ding and we walk inside. He asks the guy behind the counter if they would pay for the damage, to which they said no that it would be up to us to work it out. So I ask to exchange information and he gives me his drivers license and I give him mine and I took a photo of it. Now I ask him for his auto insurance car (not sure if they'd pay, but I figured the more the information the better), he says sure, let me see yours. I declined to give him my card, to which he declined to me his card.. So I say, someone needs to pay for this and he starts to get a little upset and says that I may have to claim this on my insurance and I say to him, why would I do this, since he's the one that hit my car. So he causes a scene in the place and says quite loudly *go F off* and storms out the door. He had been drinking quite a bit, sluring and the works. I get out side, and him and his buddies are standing there waiting for me. He gets a bit braver and starts cussing at me tell me hes about to handle this like a "man" because I didn't let him see my insurance car. Then proclaims I wouldn't bet getting *sh_T", and they hop in the cart and leave.
I go back inside with my golf buddy and I call the sheriffs department to see if they can help out. They come out and refuse to make a report, fine.. But they compel him to give me his insurance information. So now I have a copy of his DL, his phone number and his auto insurance policy number, and one very irate golfer. So I go to leave and he pulls up next to my car and says he's never talking to me again (very drunkenly), and goes on my way.
Now the back side of the parking lot is parallel with the hole. From where my car was hit is about 100-150 yards from the tee box and for him to hit my car it either went over the top of some large Leyland Cyprus trees, or he had a very bad left fade that hooked around the trees from the fairway. Both are possible. My car was not parked in the spots along the hole, but over in front of the club house. Even the cops that showed up had a hard time figuring out how the ball hit my car from that angle, it certainly wouldn't have normally happened, but there we were..
My question is of liability. Do I have a case if this guy refuses to pay. I don't think this guy is of too low character (other than getting drunk and wanting to fight me over an insurance card), it seems according to county tax info he owns the house listed on his DL. I'm thinking he might have just had too much to drink and had a bad day. But if he refuses, and I choose to take him to small claims court would I win based on this information? There is likely 2-500 in damages if I had to guess, a lot less than my insurance deductible. I think based on where I parked I would have been safe from balls, and he certainly admitted to doing the deed, but it IS a golf course so I don't know if I loose my property rights due to golf ball damage the moment I pull into the parking lot or not, which is why I am here now..
Thanks in advance..