David Moore v. Commonwealth (2000)

In David Moore v. Commonwealth, 259 Va. 431, 527 S.E.2d 406 (2000), the Court reversed the conviction of a defendant whose father was never summoned to appear in juvenile or circuit court. In David Moore, the Court held that an objection was not necessary because the statutory notice of the initiation of juvenile court proceedings to a juvenile's parent was not subject to waiver. 259 Va. at 440, 527 S.E.2d at 410-11. In doing so, the Court distinguished between "the power of a court to adjudicate a specified class of cases, commonly known as 'subject matter jurisdiction,' and the authority of a court to exercise that power in a particular case." Id. at 437, 527 S.E.2d at 409. A court's authority to exercise its power may be "'restricted by a failure to comply with statutory requirements that are mandatory in nature and, thus, are prerequisite to a court's lawful exercise of jurisdiction.'" Id. The requirement of notice to both parents was one such mandatory requirement under former Code 16.1-263. Id. at 438, 527 S.E.2d at 409-10.