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Author Archives: Deborah Elkins

Criminal – Habeas Corpus – Va. Death Case – Atkins – New Test Evidence (access required)

A death-row defendant’s lawyers for both his state and federal habeas applications did not find records of a test score relevant to proving defendant’s mental retardation under Atkins until two weeks before the evidentiary hearing held by the district court, ...

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Quick 10: Memorable litigants   (access required)

Here at Virginia Lawyers Weekly, we occasionally are entertained by some of the more memorable names we see, in case captions or press releases. Whether these are given names, or names fashioned by the particular litigant in question, we can’t ...

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Employment Discrimination – Title VII – Successor Defendant – Virginia Sheriff (access required)

A Virginia sheriff may be an independent constitutional sheriff, but a successor sheriff has to face a successful Title VII sexual harassment claim filed against her predecessor, the 4th Circuit says. Lespia King, a former deputy in the sheriff’s office ...

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Legal trends to watch in 2010: Looking to the case law  (access required)

Trendspotting week continues at Virginia Lawyers Weekly, and for today’s installment, we look to the case law for developments to watch. POKING HOLES IN ARBITRATION AGREEMENTS. Lawyers are having some luck with the “waiver” strategy. Under this theory, a party ...

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Fee petition prep questioned

In our week’s worth of trend-spotting, we noted on Tuesday that law firm cutbacks and the recessionary climate may have scrambled firm workloads, with unexpected consequences for lawyers who try to get fee awards approved in court. Bingo. Last month, ...

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Domestic Relations – Spousal Support – Part-Time Work – ‘Elective’ Breast Surgery (access required)

A husband’s complaint that wife should be working full-time after her “elective” bilateral mastectomy is rebuffed by a Fairfax Circuit Court’s opinion that wife’s surgery was “‘elective’ only in the sense that she ‘elected’ to stay alive,” and the court ...

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Domestic Relations – Unitary Child Support Award – Support ‘Continuation’ – Disabled Child (access required)

A mother who waited over six weeks after the high-school graduation of the youngest of three children covered by an undivided child support award did not forfeit her right to seek a continuation of support under Va. Code § 20-124.2(C) ...

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Search & Seizure – Detention – Car Theft Suspicion  (access required)

A Fairfax Circuit Court says defendant’s midnight street encounter with a single officer was not a custodial interrogation that violated defendant’s Fourth Amendment rights, and the court denies defendant’s motion to suppress statements he made to the officer. I find ...

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Contract – Statute Of Repose – Soffit Replacement – ‘Improvement’ (access required)

A repair project to replace soffit on building terraces was not an “improvement” under Virginia’s statute of repose, and a Fairfax Circuit Court in this first-impression case says the defendant contractor is not protected under Va. Code § 8.01-250. This ...

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Domestic Relations – Custody Modification – ‘Most Recent Award’ (access required)

A Fairfax Circuit Court says that earlier juvenile court proceeding initiated by Family Services that continued current physical custody arrangements but did not make an award of custody of the child was not “the most recent award of custody” as ...

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