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Judge Arenda L. Wright Allen

Apr 3, 2014

First brief is filed in gay marriage appeal

(AP) A federal judge who struck down Virginia’s gay marriage ban usurped the state’s authority to decide whether same-sex unions should be allowed, a lawyer defending the ban said March 28. David B. Oakley, an attorney for court clerks in Norfolk and Prince William County, also said if the door is opened to same-sex marriage […]

Feb 24, 2014

Shop Owner Claims Police Harassment

The owner of shops that sell tobacco and related products may sue employees of the Newport News Sheriff’s Office on allegations that defendants harassed him repeatedly because they believed falsely that products sold by plaintiffs contained synthetic marijuana, which is prohibited by Va. Code § 18.2-248.1:1. The court dismisses counts II and IV, supervisory liability, […]

Feb 24, 2014

Court Strikes Ban on Same-Sex Marriage

The Norfolk U.S. District Court strikes Virginia’s constitutional and statutory bans on same-sex marriage. The laws at issue here, referred to as Virginia’s Marriage Laws, include two statutory prohibitions on same-sex unions, and an amendment to the Virginia Constitution. Specifically, plaintiffs seek relief from the imposition of Article I, § 15-A of the Virginia Constitution […]

Feb 20, 2014

What ‘Windsor’ means for Virginia’s same-sex couples

Same-sex couples want to be able to live wherever they choose and have their relationships recognized in the same manner as heterosexual couples. They and their supporters have carried this fight to statehouses and federal courts around the country. Currently there are approximately 40 cases pending in courts in the United States related to same-sex […]

Feb 20, 2014

Gay marriage fight moving to federal appeals courts

WASHINGTON (AP) The overturning of Virginia’s gay marriage ban places the legal fight over same-sex unions increasingly in the hands of federal appeals courts shaped by President Barack Obama’s two election victories. It’s no accident that Virginia has become a key testing ground for federal judges’ willingness to embrace same-sex marriage after last year’s strongly […]

Feb 19, 2014

Franchisee Gets Change of Venue

A tax franchisor suing a franchisee who resides in California for breach of the franchise agreement, breach of a promissory note, misappropriation of trade secrets, civil conspiracy and business conspiracy, may not sue in the Norfolk U.S. District Court and the case is transferred to a California federal court. Plaintiff franchisor argues that venue is […]

Oct 14, 2013

Company’s late disclosure prompted judge’s ire

Imagine that after five years of litigating a complicated patent case, you’re headed into a jury trial in federal court. Now imagine you represent the plaintiff and you call your first witness. The judge speaks: “Ladies and gentleman of the jury, the plaintiff in this case engaged in discovery abuses which hinder the ability of […]

Apr 11, 2012

‘Force Majeure’ May Apply to Penalties

In judicial review of a Consent Decree between plaintiff state and federal governments and defendant Hampton Roads Sanitation District covering sanitary sewer discharges that violated the Clean Water Act, the Norfolk U.S. District Court says HRSD may invoke the Consent Decree’s force majeure provision, but the provision does not bar liability for the 10 weather-related […]

Mar 28, 2012

Med Student Has ADA Claim

A medical student may sue defendant medical school on a claim that its failure to accommodate his ADHD and depression violated the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Rehabilitation Act, but he may not sue the school under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act for its alleged inappropriate disclosure of confidential student information about […]

Nov 7, 2011

Wright Allen goes on bench

Arenda L. Wright Allen took the oath of office as a U.S. District Judge for the Eastern District on Oct. 27. She becomes the first African-American woman to sit on the federal bench in Virginia. She had been an assistant federal public defender in Norfolk. She also served as an assistant U.S. attorney, prosecuting cases […]

May 16, 2011

Two are confirmed for seats on federal bench

The U.S. Senate last week confirmed the appointment of two U.S. district judges for Virginia, one each for the Eastern and Western Districts. On Wednesday, it approved Arenda L. Wright Allen, the head of the federal defender office in Norfolk, for a seat in the Eastern District on a 96-0 vote. The next day, the […]

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