Judge Randy I. Bellows

Mar 18, 2014

Lengthy Record Supports Jail Time

A defendant who was convicted for driving after being declared an habitual offender after he was observed by an officer causing a minor traffic accident and had a BAC of .08, and who was sentenced to five years, with two years and six months suspended, is not entitled to a sentence reduction, a Fairfax Circuit […]

Mar 14, 2014

Ex-Wife, Not Widow Gets Federal TSP

Although plaintiff and decedent husband divorced in 1995 and in 2000, decedent designated defendant, his widow, as beneficiary of his federal Thrift Savings Plan benefit, that designation was invalid because it could not be witnessed by defendant who was a beneficiary, and plaintiff is entitled to the TSP benefits; in a case of first impression, […]

Jan 16, 2014

Supreme Court pushes ‘Hernandez’ envelope

In a new decision on a highly charged issue, the Supreme Court of Virginia has taken a broad view of a trial judge’s inherent authority to consider different outcomes for those who plead guilty to criminal charges. The high court said on Jan. 10 that a trial judge can convict a criminal defendant of a […]

Nov 12, 2013

Faulty Sign Means No HOV Conviction

A Fairfax Circuit Court finds defendant not guilty of driving a motor vehicle in a designated High Occupancy Vehicle lane under Va. Code § 33.1-46.2, as the HOV lane was not appropriately marked and the terms of the HOV restrictions “plainly posted,” as required by Va. Code § 33.1-46.2. In essence, the commonwealth’s argument is […]

Nov 6, 2013

Vague highway sign brings win for HOV driver

A motorist who said he was misled by a confusing highway sign has managed to beat a traffic ticket for driving solo on a Northern Virginia high occupancy highway. In a 12-page opinion, Fairfax County Circuit Judge Randy I. Bellows acquitted driver Brian Patton, who said he had never heard of a highway where the […]

Oct 25, 2013

Marriage with Late License is Void

Although a rabbi who performed a couple’s wedding ceremony received and signed their marriage license two weeks after the ceremony, their marriage is void, says a Fairfax Circuit Court. A marriage ceremony without a marriage license has no legal effect. Similarly, a marriage license without a marriage ceremony has no legal effect. That the parties […]

Oct 25, 2013

No license before ceremony voids couple’s marriage

In 2002, a couple in Northern Virginia were married, or at least they thought they were married. In 2011, the wife filed for divorce and for the next two years, they battled through the courts with numerous hearings, discovery dustups and several amended complaints and counterclaims. Then, earlier this year, the husband hit on a […]

Jul 5, 2013

Economic Loss Rule Bars Fire Loss Claim

A construction company sued by an insurance carrier that covered homeowners’ fire loss allegedly caused by a faulty light fixture cannot bring cross-claims for breach of warranty against the manufacturer of the light fixture’s light switch; the Fairfax Circuit Court says the cross-claims are barred by the economic loss rule. Nationwide Mutual Insurance, as subrogee […]

Jun 20, 2013

Overtime Complaint Not ‘Good Cause’ to Quit

An employee who was unhappy with working more than 40 hours in a week without overtime pay and who quit instead of complying with her supervisor’s request to complete a “paid time off” form after taking a sick day, did not show good cause to quit, and the Fairfax Circuit Court affirms denial of unemployment […]

May 23, 2013

Driver’s License Revoked for Federal DUI

A Fairfax Circuit Court says the federal DUI statute to which defendant pled guilty substantially parallels Virginia’s DUI statute, Va. Code § 18.2-266, and the court rejects the driver’s petition asserting it was error for Virginia to revoke his Virginia driver’s license for the federal conviction. The court finds the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles did […]

Jul 11, 2012

Rules of Evidence a ‘sea change’ for trial practice

Judging from the recent buzz, it looks like Virginia lawyers are just beginning to grapple with the difference the new Virginia Rules of Evidence, effective July 1, will make at trial. The new Rules represent a “sea change” in trial practice, according to one expert. Having  a black-and-white rule in an evidence code will put […]

Apr 30, 2012

Plaintiff claimed unauthorized practice of medicine to avoid the cap – Defense Verdict

James Planicka, DDS, suffered a severe heart attack in 2005 at age 65, after which he received an implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD). In May 2010, at age 70, he presented to Inova Fairfax Hospital for replacement of the ICD generator. The attending anesthesiologist and Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA) met with the patient before the […]

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