The state's Court System consists of four levels, the Supreme Court, the Court of Appeals, the Circuit Courts and then the District Courts. The Mother of Presidents is split into 31 judicial circuits and 32 judicial districts for the trial courts. The state employs more than 2,600 people within the judicial system, including clerks, judges, and other court staff.
The Supreme Court is the court of last resort and the highest court in the state. It has both original and appellate jurisdiction for the court system. Except for disbarment of an attorney and the death penalty, cases do not have the right to go directly to the Supreme Court. The limited jurisdiction of the this court is limited to habeas corpus.
The Supreme Court is also responsible for supervising the entire court system. It also has original jurisdiction over matters from the Judicial Inquiry and Review Commission about judges who need to be removed from office or are retiring.
The state's Court of Appeals is the intermediate appellate court for the state and hears the majority of appeals that come from the lower courts and administrative agencies within the state. Most decisions made by the Court of Appeals are final and will go no further.
The state protects the rights of citizens by honoring the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and allows public access to most all public records from the appellate courts, Circuit Courts and District Courts to be accessed online by the general public. They have access portals built into their website. However, as with most states, access to juvenile records including adoptions, sealed, and expunged records will not be available. Additionally, the federal government has laws prohibiting some records from containing personal information such as children’s names, banking information, tax IDs, social security numbers and other sensitive data like security details or trade secrets.
VA court system makes it easy for residents to file cases. On Virginia’s Judicial System website (virginia.gov), they have an extensive area just for forms for filing all types of cases. They have broken them down into sections for juvenile offense, appeals cases, mediation issues, Circuit Court cases, District Court cases, and they even have translated forms in other languages. As of 2017, VA court system was automated, and patrons of the court system can now file cases online in just about every court, they can pay tickets, fees and fines online and request a protective order. They can also search for cases and perform other routine functions including making online payments, reviewing FAQs, obtaining court forms, finding general information about the courts, downloading PDFs, filing name changes, applying for handgun permits, and finding contact information for court representatives such as the circuit court clerk's office and perform other court services.
It is very quick and easy to search for VA records when you use Infotracer. With access to hundreds of court cases in Virginia, Infotracer is the premier resource for finding records from Fairfax County, VA Beach County, Richmond, and Prince William County and all over the state. According to VA Freedom of Information Act W.Va. Code §29B-1-1 et seq., the public has access to review criminal records, divorces and other family matters, land records, case information, dockets, civil cases, court orders, marriage licenses, death records, real estate transactions, court case information, bankruptcies, and more.
Someone can conduct a private court records search at any time without a reason or permission. The only files that will not be available are those that have been sealed by a court order or by law.
Enjoy free instant access to the state records when you use the Infotracer system. The best way to look up cases online from VA circuit and district courts from all 32 judicial districts is to use VA state records search by name.
In 2012, the Virginia courts received 1,491,076 filings. In 2016, the number of filings increased by 44.3% and counted 2,150,946 filings and had 2,156,239 outgoing cases
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Domestic relations caseload of Virginia at year end of 2016 has decreased by 2.3% compared to the last 2 years, in 2015 the number of incoming cases have been 349,993 but are lower than in 2015.
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VA Circuit Courts are the general jurisdiction trial courts in the state and have the most power. Circuit Courts handle both civil and criminal cases. They can resolve civil lawsuits of more than $25,000. With claims between $4,500 - $25,000, they have concurrent jurisdiction with District Courts. They can also hear felony and misdemeanor cases, family matters such as divorces, child custody, adoptions, and other domestic-related issues. They are also authorized to process appeals from Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Court. There are 31 judicial circuits in this state and 120 Circuit Courts within them.
VA General District Courts are the limited jurisdiction courts for the state. They handle lesser criminal offenses and some civil cases as well. Most cases in District Court will be traffic violations, misdemeanors and preliminary hearings for felonies and other serious crimes. They can also resolve civil matters of $4,500 but anything that is between $4,500 and $25,000 they share the jurisdiction with Circuit Courts. These courts also handle landlord/tenant issues, contract disputes, and personal injury cases. There is one District Court in every county and city here. They can also handle small claims of up to $5,000, and mental health cases.