4th Circuit Court

Costly Error Linked to 4th Circuit Nominee


A lawyer nominated to a federal appeals court was lead attorney on an $8 million appeal that got tossed because the trial transcript was not filed by the deadline.

E. Duncan Getchell Jr. of McGuireWoods asked the Virginia Supreme Court to hear the appeal anyway, but the judges refused, the Virginian-Pilot reports. Getchell’s five-page brief did not explain the reason for the failure, except to say there was a “miscommunication or misunderstanding.”

“It is not clear who was supposed to physically deliver the transcript—Getchell, another lawyer or a paralegal—but court records show that Getchell took over as lead attorney after the verdict in July 2004,” the newspaper says.

Getchell has been nominated for a judgeship on the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, which is based in Richmond, Va.

A White House spokesman notes that the insurer for the defendant, a ski resort ordered to pay an injured patron $8.3 million, has filed a malpractice suit against the trial lawyer in the case that blames him for failing to file the transcript.

A hat tip to How Appealing, which posted the story.

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