2006 Code of Virginia § 8.01-380 - Dismissal of action by nonsuit; fees and costs

8.01-380. Dismissal of action by nonsuit; fees and costs.

A. A party shall not be allowed to suffer a nonsuit as to any cause of actionor claim, or any other party to the proceeding, unless he does so before amotion to strike the evidence has been sustained or before the jury retiresfrom the bar or before the action has been submitted to the court fordecision. After a nonsuit no new proceeding on the same cause of action oragainst the same party shall be had in any court other than that in which thenonsuit was taken, unless that court is without jurisdiction, or not a propervenue, or other good cause is shown for proceeding in another court, or whensuch new proceeding is instituted in a federal court. If after a nonsuit animproper venue is chosen, the court shall not dismiss the matter but shalltransfer it to the proper venue upon motion of any party.

B. Only one nonsuit may be taken to a cause of action or against the sameparty to the proceeding, as a matter of right, although the court may allowadditional nonsuits or counsel may stipulate to additional nonsuits. Thecourt, in the event additional nonsuits are allowed, may assess costs andreasonable attorneys' fees against the nonsuiting party.

C. If notice to take a nonsuit of right is given to the opposing party withinseven days of trial, the court in its discretion may assess against thenonsuiting party reasonable witness fees and travel costs of expert witnessesscheduled to appear at trial, which are actually incurred by the opposingparty solely by reason of the failure to give notice at least seven daysprior to trial. The court shall have the authority to determine thereasonableness of expert witness fees and travel costs.

D. A party shall not be allowed to nonsuit a cause of action, without theconsent of the adverse party who has filed a counterclaim, cross claim orthird-party claim which arises out of the same transaction or occurrence asthe claim of the party desiring to nonsuit unless the counterclaim, crossclaim or third-party claim can remain pending for independent adjudication bythe court.

(Code 1950, 8-220, 8-244; 1954, cc. 333, 611; 1977, c. 617; 1983, c. 404;1991, c. 19; 2001, c. 825; 2004, c. 362.)

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