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Author Archives: Alan Cooper

District Courts panel backs mental health law change (access required)

The Committee on District Courts has recommended an amendment to a state law aimed at encouraging mentally ill people to continue taking their medication when they are being monitored as outpatients. Virginia Code Sect. 37.2817(C) authorizes a judge to designate ...

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Court vacates opinion on anguish over pet injuries (access required)

The Supreme Court of Virginia has taken the unusual step of vacating an opinion in a case in which the defense contended that a jury was improperly allowed to consider the emotional anguish a woman suffered because of injuries to ...

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Passenger had no duty to preserve car (access required)

A passenger who was injured in a crash had no legal duty to preserve the car or to promptly notify the manufacturer of the car of the possibility of a product liability suit when the lack of notice did not ...

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Despite violation of release law, evidence can be used (access required)

A violation of the Virginia law that generally requires misdemeanor suspects to be released on a summons does not compel the exclusion of evidence seized as a result of the violation. The Virginia Court of Appeals, sitting en banc, reached ...

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PSA giving 94% of assets to husband OK (access required)

A property settlement agreement that gave the husband 94 percent of the marital assets is not unconscionable in the absence of overreaching or oppressive behavior, the Virginia Court of Appeals ruled last week. The parties, David and Dana Galloway, were ...

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4th Circuit panel changes test for Title VII claim (access required)

Title VII plaintiffs may no longer need to show that they were replaced by someone outside their protected class to make out a prima facie case of discrimination, according to the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. The decision written ...

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Special committee of court to weigh access and privacy (access required)

Virginia Chief Justice Leroy R. Hassell Sr. wants to at least start finding a balance between public access to court records and the protection of private information in those records. The openness of court records is “a great guarantee against ...

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Family wins $281K for inverse condemnation (access required)

A map that Walter S. Claytor had kept for almost 30 years proved to be key evidence in winning his family’s inverse condemnation claim against the Roanoke Redevelopment and Housing Authority. Earlier this month, jury commissioners in Roanoke awarded the ...

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Hassell: Family court is not on the 2006 agenda (access required)

Not this year, Chief Justice Leroy Rountree Hassell Sr. has told the committee that he appointed to advise him on creating a family court for Virginia. In a letter earlier this month to committee members, he said he would not ...

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Judge to defense bar: Follow discovery rules (access required)

Folklore about responses to discovery is no substitute for adherence to Rule 36 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, according to U.S. District Judge Walter D. Kelley Jr. of Norfolk. Kelley ordered the payment of $5,807 in attorney’s fees ...

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