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Verdict inadequate, Supreme Court finds

The Supreme Court of Virginia apparently believes it has said all that needs to be in Virginia Reports about inadequate verdicts.

It issued an unpublished order today affirming an award of a new trial for a woman who said she suffered neck, back and shoulder sprains in a car wreck in Suffolk. County. The first jury, apparently skeptical about the woman’s delay in seeking treatment, awarded her only $500 despite medical bills that totaled about $6,000. A second jury awarded the plaintiff $20,000.

The defendant contended that the first verdict should have been affirmed, but the Supreme Court said the trial judge was correct to set it aside because the defense medical expert agreed with the plaintiff’s expert that the wreck caused the sprains and that the medical expenses for treating them were reasonably necessary.

“Because the jury disregarded the uncontroverted evidence concerning damages, the circuit court properly found the jury’s verdict to be inadequate as a matter of law,” the high court said in Wright v. Meadows, Record No. 072082.

By Alan Cooper

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