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Ownership Cases Summarized By Accident Lawyer

Fairfax Injury Lawyer Brien Roche Summarizes Cases Dealing with Ownership of Automobles

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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 ownership of automobiles. For more information on title ownership see the pages on Wikipedia 

Ownership- Statutes

See Va. Code § 8.2-312 (UCC) as to warranty of title.

See Va. Code § 8.2-401 (UCC) as to passing of title.

See Va. Code § 46.2-100 as to definition of owner.

See Va. Code § 46.2-616 stating that it is unlawful to purchase vehicle from vendor who does not have certificate of title.

See Va. Code § 46.2-624 as to information required upon transfer of title of taxicab or vehicles damaged by water.


1981 Castle Cars, Inc. v. United States Fire Ins. Co., 221 Va. 773, 273 S.E.2d 793.

Automobile dealer was bona fide purchaser of automobile, which had been stolen from original owner. Dealer had insurable interest.

1972 Hardware Mut. v. General Acc., 212 Va. 780, 188 S.E.2d 218.

Question of when title passed was dealt with.

1970 Woodson v. Celina Mut. Ins. Co., 211 Va. 423, 177 S.E.2d 610.

Title to automobile was found to pass when dealer sold automobile to buyer who gave check in payment, secured temporary plates and registration, and dealer had assigned title and purchaser had applied for new title.

1968 Breeding v. Johnson, 208 Va. 652, 159 S.E.2d 836.

Proof that automobile was owned by defendant creates rebuttable presumption or inference that automobile was being operated by defendant or someone for him under circumstances making him liable therefor.

1965 Vicars v. Atlantic Discount Co., 205 Va. 934, 140 S.E.2d 667.

Where title came through thief, defendant acquired no right to vehicle against true owner despite his good faith and payment of value.

1959 Nationwide Ins. Co. v. Storm, 200 Va. 526, 106 S.E.2d 588.

Until title of vehicle properly assigned, ownership has not been transferred.

1952 Painter v. Lingon, 193 Va. 840, 71 S.E.2d 355.

Fact that title to vehicle is registered in wife’s name is not conclusive that she is actual owner and clothed with all rights, benefits, and liabilities flowing therefrom.

1952 Silvey v. Johnston, 193 Va. 677, 70 S.E.2d 280.

Suit on warranty of title of vehicle.

1951 United States Cas. Co. v. Bain, 191 Va. 717, 62 S.E.2d 814.

Title certificate not conclusive of ownership but only prima facie evidence.

1945 Piccolo v. Woodford, 184 Va. 432, 35 S.E.2d 393.

Deals with proof of ownership.

1944 Blakey v. Commonwealth, 182 Va. 614, 29 S.E.2d 863.

Prosecution for DWI. Police officer testified as to card found in car indicating to whom car was registered. Although hearsay in one sense, police officer was simply testifying to what he found, therefore admissible.

1944 Hague v. Valentine, 182 Va. 256, 28 S.E.2d 720.

Where ownership or control of instrumentality is denied, then supporting affidavit must be filed. Defendant’s failure to file this precludes contesting ownership of vehicle.

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Ownership Cases Summarized By Accident Lawyer

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