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Remote Court Proceedings Becoming Crucial as Courts Limit Hours Due to COVID-19

The spread of COVID-19 in West Virginia accelerated in mid-summer and into fall. As a result, courts in some of the state’s more heavily affected areas implemented protocols and procedures designed to keep court employees, litigants and the public safe while continuing to provide as much access to the courts as possible. Remote court proceedings Read More

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How Conspiracy Tolls the West Virginia Statute of Limitations

Every state has laws that limit the time plaintiffs have to sue. Sometimes, though, the law allows for extending, or “tolling,” the time limit in certain circumstances. For instance, West Virginia’s statute of limitations may be tolled when the plaintiff does not know he or she has a cause of action and cannot known by Read More

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West Virginia Limits Wrongful Death Suits on Behalf of Unborn Children

The West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals has previously permitted a wrongful death lawsuit in behalf of a nonviable child still in the womb. Now, the court has curtailed its ruling, holding that an ectopic embryo or ectopic fetus does not qualify as a person under the Wrongful Death Statute. The recent decision, in Saleh Read More

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Understanding the Duty to Provide Reasonable Accommodations for Disabled Employees

The West Virginia Human Rights Act requires employers to provide “reasonable accommodations” to disabled employees where necessary to allow them to perform their job duties. In a recent decision, the state Supreme Court of Appeals has put an important limitation on the scope of that requirement for both public and private employment. The facts in Read More

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West Virginia Top Court Declines to Review Claims Commission Decisions

The West Virginia Constitution makes the state government immune to suits against it. However, the state legislature may temper the harshness of that prohibition by enacting bills appropriating money to compensate people injured by the wrongful acts of the state government. The West Virginia Legislative Claims Commission was created to make findings and recommendations on Read More

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Private Employee Fired for Reporting Alleged Criminal Activity Cannot Bring Retaliatory Discharge Suit

Although West Virginia is an at will employment state, where employers may normally fire their employees with or without cause, the state Supreme Court of Appeals has made an exception when a termination would violate a substantial public policy. However, there are limits on which policies are substantial enough to support a suit, as a Read More

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West Virginia Supreme Court Tightens Pleading Standards in Wrongful Discharge Cases

West Virginia is an “at will” employment state, where an employer may normally fire its employees with or without cause, but an exception to that rule is when the termination would violate a principle of public policy. The West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals held in Feliciano v. 7-Eleven, Inc. that a convenience store did Read More

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Federal Trade Commission Proposes Changes to Standards for Safeguarding Customer Information

It is important to protect customers’ private information. Automobile dealerships understand that, as does the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). As part of that understanding, car dealers have been required to comply with the Standards for Safeguarding Customer Information (“Safeguards Rule”) since 2003. The rule requires dealerships to safeguard non-public personal information (NPI) such as Social Read More

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Court Finds Termination of Employment Does Not Contravene the Family and Medical Leave Act

From a distance, when an employer terminates an employee right after that employee takes medical leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), it looks suspicious. And in fact, there is a presumption in the federal Fourth Circuit that such suspicious circumstances lead to a presumption of wrongful termination — that the employer wrongfully Read More

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Court Upholds Dismissal for Failure to Prosecute in Tobacco Claim

The story is a familiar one for tobacco manufacturers embroiled in litigation: even if you win, the lawsuits keep coming. A decision from the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals on June 7, 2019 may somewhat slow that interminable flow of litigation: the court halted an attempt to resurrect a case originally filed more than Read More

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