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Updates from the Virginia Legislative Session

As the Virginia Legislature continues to work through the 2022 legislative session, here are a few updates regarding some of the pending bills that we brought to your attention in a previous blog.

HB 1132- The purpose of this bill is to allow the Court to pay settlement funds directly to a responsible adult (usually a parent) when resolving a personal injury claim for a minor. Currently, the Court is allowed to pay the responsible adult the settlement funds if they do not exceed $25,000. This bill would increase that amount to allow the Court to pay the responsible adult the settlement funds if they do not exceed $50,000.

  • UPDATE: This is an important bill as it allows proceeds from a settlement to be used for the minor’s best interests before the minor turns 18. The bill was read and voted on in the House on February 15th, 2022, and unanimously passed.

HB 467- This was a bill that we were monitoring due to its impact on those injured as a result of a dog bite or dog attack. This bill would allow those injured by a dog to recover compensation for their injuries from the dog owner regardless of if the dog owner knew or should have known of the dog’s propensity for aggressive behavior.

  • UPDATE: This bill was referred to the Agriculture, Chesapeake, and Natural resources committee on January 11th, 2022. The committee unanimously recommended laying the bill on the table on January 26th, 2022, and was officially left in committee on February 15th, 2022. Hopefully, this bill, or a similar bill, will be reconsidered next legislative session. This bill would have been a significant step toward helping those injured due to a dog bite or attack prevail civilly.

HB 504- Another interesting bill brought up in this legislative session would allow expunged criminal records to be used in a civil action when the civil action arises out of or is related to that criminal charge. This bill was assigned to the Courts of Justice Committee on January 22nd, 2022, and the subcommittee recommended laying it on the table. We will continue to monitor this bill in the future.

This legislative session will adjourn on March 12th, 2022. We want to thank all of our Senators and Delegates for their hard work this session, and we will continue to update everyone as the session continues.

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