Spicer, Olin & Associates, P.C. Spicer, Olin & Associates, P.C.

March 2014 Archives

DUI Accident Lawsuits - Virginia Punitive Damages

Virginia Code Section 8.01-44.5 provides for punitive damages in DUI accident lawsuits when a driver of a vehicle is intoxicated and (1) the driver's blood alcohol content ("BAC") is at or above .15 at the time the driver was operating the vehicle or (2) the driver of the vehicle refuses to take the breathalyzer. This code section is regularly used by personal injury attorneys to establish punitive damages at trial. The Virginia Supreme Court recently ruled in Coalson v. Canchola, 2014 Va. LEXIS 30 (2014) (full opinion) that a 1:17 ratio between compensatory and punitive damages was not excessive under Virginia law and did not offend the driver's due process rights.

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Spicer, Olin & Associates, P.C.

Spicer, Olin & Associates, P.C.
504 S Main St
Blacksburg, VA 24060

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