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Author Archives: Deborah Elkins

Civil Procedure – Diversity – Nondiverse Defendant – Involuntary Dismissal (access required)

A Harrisonburg U.S. District Court determines sua sponte that it lacks diversity jurisdiction in this fraud and contract case against a tanning salon franchiser because a federal court cannot exercise jurisdiction over a case that becomes removable due to the ...

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Criminal – Acquittal – Hung Jury – Health Care Fraud – Collateral Estoppel (access required)

A defendant charged with a scheme in which her employer, an ambulance company, fraudulently billed for transporting dialysis patients who were ambulatory can be retried for health care fraud in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1347, after a jury acquitted ...

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Criminal – Sentence Reduction – Plea – Specific Performance (access required)

Although defendant contends his extra assistance to the government warrants an additional motion under Fed. R. Crim. P. 35(b) for a further sentence reduction, a Harrisonburg U.S. District Court says defendant violated the terms of his plea agreement by appealing ...

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Civil Rights – Jail Inmate – Prescription Narcotic Pain Medication (access required)

Although plaintiff had a prescription for Percocet for recent shoulder surgery when he was sentenced to jail time, he has not demonstrated defendant jail officials were deliberately indifferent to his serious medical need when they denied him narcotic pain medication, ...

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Bankruptcy – Abusive Filing – Means Testing – Interlocutory Appeal (access required)

A Roanoke U.S. District Court cannot review a bankruptcy court’s order that the means testing for abusive filings does not apply to petitions filed as Chapter 13 and converted to Chapter 7; because the order is interlocutory, the appeal is ...

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Administrative – Environmental – Highway Widening – Noise Abatement (access required)

An Alexandria U.S. District Court dismisses a citizens’ lawsuit to halt widening of I-66 inside the Beltway. Plaintiff Arlington residents challenge the Federal Highway Administration’s Aug. 1, 2008 approval of a Categorical Exclusion for construction of a Spot Improvement Project ...

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Criminal – Ineffective Assistance – ACCA – Failure To Object (access required)

At defendant’s sentencing as an armed career criminal, his lawyer’s failure to object to the use of defendant’s prior South Carolina convictions prejudiced his defense and amounts to ineffective assistance of counsel, and the 4th Circuit vacates denial of defendant’s ...

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Civil Procedure – Interlocutory Appeals – Class Action Fairness Act (access required)

Even if defendant lenders “jumped the gun” in removing three plaintiffs’ state court suits alleging violations of Maryland mortgage law to federal court, the district court did not err in refusing to remand the suits because plaintiffs’ amended complaints alleged ...

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Civil Procedure – Relation Back – IFP Plaintiff – § 1983 Complaint – Excessive Force (access required)

A plaintiff who alleges defendant police officer used excessive force when he fired at plaintiff during pursuit on a stolen car report has his suit against the officer in his individual capacity reinstated by the 4th Circuit; the district court ...

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Appellate judges: Tying up loose ends after final decree (access required)

As Virginia’s high court delivered its new set of rules on April 30, two judges from the Virginia Court of Appeals were fleshing out appellate rules with some practical pointers for lawyers. Speaking to family law practitioners from around the ...

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