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Economic Loss Rule Cases Summarized By Injury Lawyer

This page within Virginia Tort Case Law is a compilation of cases reported by the Virginia Supreme Court and summarized by Brien Roche dealing with the topic of Economic Loss Rule and the related topic of personal injury. For more information on tort related issues see the pages on Wikipedia.

Economic Loss Rule-Cases

2010—Abi-Najm v. Concord Condominium, LLC, 280 Va. 350, 699 S.E.2d 483.

Trial Court improperly granted demurrer based upon Economic Loss Rule where plaintiffs had pled duties that gave rise to economic damages that were independent of the agreement between the parties. In this case, the economic losses flowed from a breach of the Virginia Consumer Protection Act and also from fraud in the inducement.

1997 Beard Plumbing and Heating, Inc. v. Thompson Plastics, Incorporated, 254 Va. 240, 491 S.E.2d 731.

Economic loss rule.The question presented was whether privity is required to recover economic loss under Va. Code § 8.2-715(2) due to the breach of the implied warranty of merchantability, not withstanding the language of Va. Code § 8.2-318. The Court concluded that the referenced code section does require a contract between the parties for the recovery of consequential economic loss damages incurred as a breach of warranty by the seller.

1996 Moore v. Drewry, 251 Va. 277, 467 S.E.2d 811.

Economic loss rule.Drewry was the president of the engineering firm that performed work pursuant to the contract between that firm and Moore. The question is whether he is liable for purely economic losses resulting from the negligent performance of that contract. The Court answered that question in the negative.

1993 Ward v. Ernst and Young, 246 Va. 317, 435 S.E.2d 628.

Economic loss rule.Plaintiff was the sole stockholder of corporation. He sued accounting firm for breach of contract and professional negligence. In action seeking damages for an economic loss resulting from negligent performance of a contractual commitment brought by a non-party to the contract, privity of contract is an essential element. Ward, in this case, lacking privity of contract with Ernst and Young, sought to recover damages for economic loss under negligence principles. The trial court properly dismissed that action.

1987 Rotonda Cond. Owners v. Rotonda Associates, 238 Va. 85, 380 S.E.2d 876.

Economic loss rule.Association sought to recover damages for economic losses associated with the cost of repairing defects in common elements. Such economic losses are not recoverable in tort. They are purely the result of disappointed economic expectations.

1989 Copenhaver v. Rogers, 238 Va. 361, 384 S.E.2d 593.

In this legal malpractice action against plaintiff’s grandparents’ lawyers, the Court held that no cause of action in tort exist against the lawyer absent privity. This is a case involving a claim solely for economic loss. No cause of action exists in such cases absent privity of contract.

1988 Sensenbrenner v. Rust, Orling & Neal Architects, Inc., 236 Va. 419, 374 S.E.2d 55.

The question presented was whether Virginia permits recovery by a home purchaser against a pool installer and the architect for damages to an indoor swimming pool and to the foundation of the house caused by a leaky pool, where the pool installer and the architect were not in privity of contract with the home purchaser, on the basis of the damages were injuries to property and not economic loss. The damages here were not in the nature of property damage. They were purely disappointed economic expectations and therefore no recovery allowed.

1987 Blake Constuction Company, Inc. v. Alley, 233 Va. 31, 353 S.E.2d 724.

The question presented is whether a cause of action exists in Virginia for a contractor to recover from an architect or engineer for economic loss in the absence of privity. Under the common law there could be no recovery in tort for only economic loss in the absence of privity. The Court held that the pertinent code section did not eliminate the requirement of privity in a tort action for economic loss in this case.

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Economic Loss Rule Cases Summarized By Injury Lawyer

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