Deadly Fungal Meningitis Outbreak Linked to Contaminated Steroid Injections

Author:  Scott D. Fitzgerald, Virginia Personal Injury Lawyer

Public health officials have linked the recent outbreak of fungal meningitis to contaminated epidural steroid injections, commonly intended to alleviate back pain.  As of October 11, 2012, 170 people nationwide have contracted fungal meningitis and 14 have died.  The contaminated steroid shots were mixed by a compounding pharmacy in suburban Boston, Massachusetts and distributed to approximately 75 facilities in at least 23 states.  The pharmacy issued an emergency recall on September 26, 2012, but not before an estimated 14,000 patients nationwide received potentially contaminated injections.

It is not clear how many people who received…

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Virginia Law: Do I Have a Right to an Appeal of My Civil Case?


Author: Kathleen Smith (Llewellyn-Duncan), Fredericksburg VA Accident Lawyer

Sometimes my personal injury clients ask if they have a right to appeal if they don't like the result at trial.  In Virginia, the answer depends where the case was originally filed and tried.[1]  If the case was tried in General District Court, and you are not satisfied with the verdict, you have an automatic right to appeal your case to the Circuit Court, but you must give the court written notice of your intent to appeal within 10 days of the judgment (usually the date the case was tried).[2]  You may also have to post what is called an appeal bond.  Your case will then be heard in Circuit Court, and you may request a jury trial.


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Malcolm McConnell Named Lawyer of the Year - Best Lawyers 2013 Richmond Medical Malpractice Law - Plaintiffs

September 12, 2012 - The personal injury law firm of Allen, Allen, Allen & Allen is proud to announce that Malcolm P. "Mic" McConnell, III has been named Best Lawyers' 2013 Richmond Medical Malpractice Law - Plaintiffs Lawyer of the Year. The honor is an indication of the high level of respect Mic McConnell has earned among other leading lawyers in the Medical Malpractice community for his abilities, professionalism and integrity.

Best Lawyers® began designating "Lawyers of the Year" in high-profile legal practice areas in 2009. The honor is significant because only a single lawyer in each practice area and designated metropolitan area is honored as the "Lawyer of the Year." The winners are selected based…

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Virginia Statutes: New Virginia DUI Laws Effective July 1, 2012

Virginia's DUI laws get tougher with the introduction of the Ignition Interlock Device MANDATORY for all that are convicted of driving under the influence

Author: Paul D. Hux, Personal Injury Lawyer

On July 1, 2012, a new law went into effect in the Commonwealth prohibiting all drivers convicted of first time offense of driving under the influence of alcohol or other substances (DUI) from operating any motor vehicle that does not have  a certified Ignition Interlock Device (IID).[1]  This restriction is mandatory for a period of at least six months and the driver must have no alcohol violations during that period.  Prior to July, 1, 2012, the law required these IIDs be imposed only on first time offenders…

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Meet the Attorneys of Allen & Allen: Kathleen Smith (Llewellyn-Duncan) - VIDEO

Kathleen is a Fredericksburg, VA car accident lawyer. She additionally handles many types of personal injury cases including truck accidents and pedestrian accidents in Fredericksburg, Garrisonville, Stafford County and the surrounding areas. Kathleen also serves as an adjunct professor at Strayer University where she is helping to design the curriculum for the Criminal Justice degree. She is a member of the Virginia Women Attorneys Association and the Fredericksburg Bar Association. To learn more about Kathleen, visit:


Video Transcript: I am Kathleen Llewellyn-Duncan. I am a trial attorney with Allen & Allen, in the Fredricksburg…

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Meet Virginia Medical Malpractice Attorney Malcolm P. "Mic" McConnell, III - VIDEO

Mic McConnell is the lead medical malpractice lawyer for the Allen Law Firm's Medical Malpractice Team. With over 20 years of experience, he is a strong advocate for his clients and their families. Mic's successful litigation of cases in a wide variety of medical malpractice specialties has earned him a listing in Best Lawyers in America and Virginia Super Lawyers. He is certified in medical malpractice law by the American Board of Professional Liability Attorneys and frequently lectures to attorney associations across the United States on effective trial tactics. To learn more about Mic, visit:


Video Transcript: I am Mic…

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General District Court or Circuit Court - Which is Better for Your Personal Injury Case in Virginia

Author: Charles L. Allen, Richmond Personal Injury Lawyer

In Virginia, a  person cannot force an insurance company pay a settlement for their personal injury claim. Instead, the only right an injured person has is a trial to seek a judgment on their behalf against the party that caused the injury.[1] Two different state courts typically decide my clients cases; either General District Court or Circuit Court.  Let me describe some of the differences between these two courts.   General District Court's jurisdiction is limited to an amount that does not exceed $25,000.  In other words, the Court can award any amount from nothing at all up to $25,000. [2] Also, the amount of the award is decided by a judge,…

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'Castle Doctrine' Bills Shot Down in Virginia's General Assembly

Author: David M. Williams, Jr., Fredericksburg Personal Injury Attorney

Two bills giving Virginians the green light to use deadly force against intruders into their homes died in the 2012 General Assembly session.

The "Castle doctrine" originated from old English common law rules protecting a person's home and the principle underlying the phrase "a person's home is their castle". The doctrine allows the use of physical force, including deadly force, by a person in his/her home against an intruder who has committed an overt act against him/her or against someone else lawfully in the home. Many states have laws that are based on the Castle Doctrine.[1] One of the Virginia bills would have protected…

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New Concussion Laws in Virginia Schools - Effective July 1, 2012

 Author:  Scott D. Fitzgerald, Richmond Personal Injury Lawyer

Concussions occur when the brain is jostled inside the skull after a blow to the head or body.  Outward symptoms of a concussion may include the following: temporary loss of consciousness, general confusion, complaints of headaches, amnesia surrounding the traumatic event, dizziness, ringing in the ears, nausea or vomiting, slurred speech, and fatigue.  However, the most significant and dangerous symptom is not as readily detectable.  Concussions can cause swelling of the brain, which can lead to permanent brain damage and even death if left untreated. Some concussions may initially appear minor, but they are a form of traumatic brain injury,…

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Trial Practice: Arguing Amounts for Specific Items of Damages: The Virginia Supreme Court's Decision in WAKOLE v. BARBER

On March 2, 2012, the Virginia Supreme Court issued a very important decision addressing whether, in a personal injury case, a plaintiff or their attorney  may argue, in closing argument, specific dollar amounts for each element of damages listed in Virginia Model Jury Instruction No. 9.000.  A Virginia statute allowed a plaintiff or their attorney to tell a jury a specific amount that the plaintiff wanted for a total verdict.  Certain elements of the damages already have an amount -- for instance, the amount of the medical bills and the amount of the lost earnings - and a plaintiff was allowed to ask for those.  However, other items of damages do not -- for example, physical pain, emotional suffering, inconvenience, etc. - and…

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