Author Archives: Baker McClanahan

Grandparent visitation is not allowed (access required)

The grandparents of a 7-year-old girl are not entitled to court-ordered visitation with her over her parents’ objection, a fractured Supreme Court of Virginia has ruled. The court upheld the constitutionality of a statute enacted in 1994 granting courts the ...

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DMV, criminal checks on jurors are banned (access required)

Prosecutors in Loudoun County have been banned from running criminal and traffic background checks on prospective jurors. Commonwealth’s attorneys across Virginia routinely have used Division of Motor Vehicles records and other state and national databases to screen venire members. These ...

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Using the Model Jury Instructions (access required)

When preparing for trial, litigators often turn to a common resource–the Virginia Model Jury Instructions. The instructions have been widely used by lawyers and judges over the last two decades and, according to a forward written by Chief Justice Harry ...

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Help the Clerk Help You (access required)

One of a lawyer’s most valuable practice resources can be found behind a counter in the courthouse. A key to good practice is getting to know the court clerk and his staff. Judges and experienced lawyers stress that truism time ...

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