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Author Archives: Deborah Elkins

Domestic Relations – Rule 5A:18 – Spousal Support – Survivor Benefit Plan (access required)

Rules 5A:18 and 5A:20(e) preclude the Court of Appeals from hearing husband’s claims challenging $1,800 in monthly spousal support to wife and her receipt of a share of his military retirement pay, but the appellate court upholds the trial court ...

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Employment Discrimination – Race – Retail Employee – Drug Screening (access required)

A Richmond U.S. District Court refuses to dismiss this Title VII race discrimination claim filed by an African-American furniture store employee who alleges he was terminated when he refused to take a drug-screening test, although a Caucasian employee was not ...

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Real Estate – Foreclosure – FCRA – Trustee’s Fiduciary Duty (access required)

A defendant who lost his Woodbridge home through foreclosure has his suit alleging fraud and violations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act against multiple defendants dismissed by an Alexandria U.S. District Court. In count I, plaintiff John Horvath claims he ...

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Intellectual Property – Corporate Identity Theft – Attorney’s Fees (access required)

A plaintiff who won an injunction and $20,000 in damages in this suit alleging appropriation of plaintiff’s identity as The Flexible Benefits Council, a lobbying organization, can collect attorney’s fees and costs, but the Alexandria U.S. District Court only allows ...

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Criminal – Ineffective Assistance – Mistrial Offer (access required)

The 4th Circuit says the trial lawyer for a former CEO convicted of mail and wire fraud did not render constitutionally ineffective assistance of counsel when he allegedly ignored defendant’s direction to accept the district court’s offer of a mistrial ...

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Criminal – Habeas – Ineffective Assistance (access required)

The 4th Circuit says a district court’s “de novo do-over” of a North Carolina murder defendant’s habeas claim alleging ineffective assistance was impermissible under the AEDPA, and it reverses a decision for defendant and remands for dismissal of his habeas ...

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Civil Rights – Police Dog Bite – Drunken Teen – Qualified Immunity (access required)

A police officer who used his “find-and-bite” patrol dog to search for a 13-year-old boy reportedly suffering from alcohol intoxication and hypothermia has qualified immunity from the boy’s suit for violation of his Fourth Amendment rights after the police dog ...

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Criminal – Interlocutory Appeal – Contempt Order – Lawyer’s Files (access required)

The 4th Circuit says it’s ironic that a lawyer under investigation for fraudulent billing of the West Virginia Public Defender Services has to comply with a district court’s order to produce documents for privilege review, in order to appeal her ...

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