The Interstate Depositions and Discovery Act might not sound very exciting, and hardly anyone paid much attention when it quietly took effect in North Carolina six months ago, but it brought an end to a long procedural nightmare. “The idea was to have predictability and regularity and also to establish clear rules of the game,” said Democratic state Rep. Deborah K. Ross, a Raleigh attorney who sponsored the act with three other lawyers, one Democrat and two Republicans.
Insurance -No UM/UIM ‘Stacking’ for Policy Omission Dooley v. Hartford Accident & Indemnity Co. Although an auto liability policy failed to specify any specific amount of uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage provided, that omission did not mean the policy terms prohibiting “stacking,” or combining coverage for multiple insured vehicles, were ambiguous under Virginia law and would allow stacking. The 4th Circuit affirms the district court’s denial of additional coverage to appellant
Civil Rights – No Fair Housing Claim from HOA’s ATV Denial Scoggins v. Lee’s Crossing Homeowners Ass’n A homeowners association for Lee’s Crossing subdivision wins a housing discrimination suit under the Fair Housing Amendments Act of 1988 filed by a family who was denied the right for their disabled adult son to use an all-terrain vehicle on the subdivision’s unpaved roads; the 4th Circuit affirms summary judgment for the HOA and on the HOA’s cross-appeal, affirms denial of their request for attorney’s fees
Prisons & Jails – Claim Mooted for Prison Visitation Denial Williams v. Ozmint Restoration of a prison inmate’s visiting privileges has mooted his appeal of suspension of those privileges for a two-year period as a penalty for the inmate’s suspected receipt of contraband; the 4th Circuit further concludes that the prison warden who imposed the suspicion is shielded by qualified immunity because the inmate did not have a clearly established right to visitation.
Labor & Employment – No ADA Claim from Leave Denial Wilson v. Dollar General Corp. An employee of a chain-store distribution center who filed his disability discrimination claim with the EEOC before he filed his Chapter 13 bankruptcy petition has standing to pursue his discrimination claim, the 4th Circuit says, but the claim has no merit as the employee did not show he could perform the essential functions of his job had he been granted a brief additional leave for treatment of his vision impairment.
Environmental – CWA Permit Upheld for Mine Company Ohio Valley Environmental Coalition Inc. v. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers The 4th Circuit affirms issuance of a water quality permit under the Clean Water Act to Highland Mining Company, on the basis that a proposed surface coal mine adjacent to a stream in Logan County would not damage water quality or violate water quality standards.