Code of Virginia

Code of Virginia
Title 16.1. Courts Not of Record
5/24/2020

Chapter 6. Venue, Jurisdiction and Procedure in Civil Matters.

Article 1. Venue in Civil Matters.

§ 16.1-76. Venue.

In all civil actions over which the general district courts have jurisdiction pursuant to § 16.1-77, venue shall be determined in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 5 (§ 8.01-257 et seq.) of Title 8.01.

1956, c. 555; 1977, c. 624; 1978, c. 421.

Article 2. Jurisdiction in Civil Actions.

§ 16.1-77. (Effective until October 1, 2019) Civil jurisdiction of general district courts; amending amount of claim.

Except as provided in Article 5 (§ 16.1-122.1 et seq.), each general district court shall have, within the limits of the territory it serves, civil jurisdiction as follows:

(1) Exclusive original jurisdiction of any claim to specific personal property or to any debt, fine or other money, or to damages for breach of contract or for injury done to property, real or personal, or for any injury to the person that would be recoverable by action at law or suit in equity, when the amount of such claim does not exceed $4,500 exclusive of interest and any attorney fees, and concurrent jurisdiction with the circuit courts having jurisdiction in such territory of any such claim when the amount thereof exceeds $4,500 but does not exceed $25,000, exclusive of interest and any attorney fees. However, this $25,000 limit shall not apply with respect to distress warrants under the provisions of § 55-230, cases involving liquidated damages for violations of vehicle weight limits pursuant to § 46.2-1135, nor cases involving forfeiture of a bond pursuant to § 19.2-143. While a matter is pending in a general district court, upon motion of the plaintiff seeking to increase the amount of the claim, the court shall order transfer of the matter to the circuit court that has jurisdiction over the amended amount of the claim without requiring that the case first be dismissed or that the plaintiff suffer a nonsuit, and the tolling of the applicable statutes of limitations governing the pending matter shall be unaffected by the transfer. Except for good cause shown, no such order of transfer shall issue unless the motion to amend and transfer is made at least 10 days before trial. The plaintiff shall pay filing and other fees as otherwise provided by law to the clerk of the court to which the case is transferred, and such clerk shall process the claim as if it were a new civil action. The plaintiff shall prepare and present the order of transfer to the transferring court for entry, after which time the case shall be removed from the pending docket of the transferring court and the order of transfer placed among its records. The plaintiff shall provide a certified copy of the transfer order to the receiving court.

(2) Jurisdiction to try and decide attachment cases when the amount of the plaintiff's claim does not exceed $25,000 exclusive of interest and any attorney fees.

(3) Jurisdiction of actions of unlawful entry or detainer as provided in Article 13 (§ 8.01-124 et seq.) of Chapter 3 of Title 8.01, and in Chapter 13 (§ 55-217 et seq.) of Title 55, and the maximum jurisdictional limits prescribed in subdivision (1) shall not apply to any claim, counter-claim or cross-claim in an unlawful detainer action that includes a claim for damages sustained or rent against any person obligated on the lease or guarantee of such lease.

(4) Except where otherwise specifically provided, all jurisdiction, power and authority over any civil action or proceeding conferred upon any general district court judge or magistrate under or by virtue of any provisions of the Code.

(5) Jurisdiction to try and decide suits in interpleader involving personal or real property where the amount of money or value of the property is not more than the maximum jurisdictional limits of the general district court. However, the maximum jurisdictional limits prescribed in subdivision (1) shall not apply to any claim, counter-claim, or cross-claim in an interpleader action that is limited to the disposition of an earnest money deposit pursuant to a real estate purchase contract. The action shall be brought in accordance with the procedures for interpleader as set forth in § 8.01-364. However, the general district court shall not have any power to issue injunctions. Actions in interpleader may be brought by either the stakeholder or any of the claimants. The initial pleading shall be either by motion for judgment, by warrant in debt, or by other uniform court form established by the Supreme Court of Virginia. The initial pleading shall briefly set forth the circumstances of the claim and shall name as defendant all parties in interest who are not parties plaintiff.

(6) Jurisdiction to try and decide any cases pursuant to § 2.2-3713 of the Virginia Freedom of Information Act (§ 2.2-3700 et seq.) or § 2.2-3809 of the Government Data Collection and Dissemination Practices Act (§ 2.2-3800 et seq.), for writs of mandamus or for injunctions.

(7) Concurrent jurisdiction with the circuit courts having jurisdiction in such territory to adjudicate habitual offenders pursuant to the provisions of Article 9 (§ 46.2-355.1 et seq.) of Chapter 3 of Title 46.2.

(8) Jurisdiction to try and decide cases alleging a civil violation described in § 18.2-76.

(9) Jurisdiction to try and decide any cases pursuant to § 55-79.80:2 of the Condominium Act (§ 55-79.39 et seq.) or § 55-513 of the Property Owners' Association Act (§ 55-508 et seq.).

(10) Concurrent jurisdiction with the circuit courts to submit matters to arbitration pursuant to Chapter 21 (§ 8.01-577 et seq.) of Title 8.01 where the amount in controversy is within the jurisdictional limits of the general district court. Any party that disagrees with an order by a general district court granting an application to compel arbitration may appeal such decision to the circuit court pursuant to § 8.01-581.016.

For purposes of this section, the territory served by a county general district court expressly authorized by statute to be established in a city includes the general district court courtroom.

1956, c. 555; 1968, c. 5; 1973, c. 440; 1978, c. 40; 1981, c. 404; 1983, c. 616; 1987, cc. 87, 93; 1988, c. 799; 1990, cc. 217, 471; 1991, c. 135; 1992, cc. 111, 777; 1995, c. 799; 1997, c. 753; 1998, cc. 482, 495; 1999, cc. 945, 987; 2001, cc. 473, 477; 2002, cc. 200, 506, 645; 2004, cc. 344, 460; 2008, cc. 840, 843; 2009, c. 663; 2010, c. 181; 2011, cc. 14, 76, 372, 378, 702; 2016, c. 181; 2017, c. 657; 2019, cc. 240, 787.

§ 16.1-77. (Effective October 1, 2019) Civil jurisdiction of general district courts; amending amount of claim.

Except as provided in Article 5 (§ 16.1-122.1 et seq.), each general district court shall have, within the limits of the territory it serves, civil jurisdiction as follows:

(1) Exclusive original jurisdiction of any claim to specific personal property or to any debt, fine or other money, or to damages for breach of contract or for injury done to property, real or personal, or for any injury to the person that would be recoverable by action at law or suit in equity, when the amount of such claim does not exceed $4,500 exclusive of interest and any attorney fees, and concurrent jurisdiction with the circuit courts having jurisdiction in such territory of any such claim when the amount thereof exceeds $4,500 but does not exceed $25,000, exclusive of interest and any attorney fees. However, this $25,000 limit shall not apply with respect to distress warrants under the provisions of § 8.01-130.4, cases involving liquidated damages for violations of vehicle weight limits pursuant to § 46.2-1135, nor cases involving forfeiture of a bond pursuant to § 19.2-143. While a matter is pending in a general district court, upon motion of the plaintiff seeking to increase the amount of the claim, the court shall order transfer of the matter to the circuit court that has jurisdiction over the amended amount of the claim without requiring that the case first be dismissed or that the plaintiff suffer a nonsuit, and the tolling of the applicable statutes of limitations governing the pending matter shall be unaffected by the transfer. Except for good cause shown, no such order of transfer shall issue unless the motion to amend and transfer is made at least 10 days before trial. The plaintiff shall pay filing and other fees as otherwise provided by law to the clerk of the court to which the case is transferred, and such clerk shall process the claim as if it were a new civil action. The plaintiff shall prepare and present the order of transfer to the transferring court for entry, after which time the case shall be removed from the pending docket of the transferring court and the order of transfer placed among its records. The plaintiff shall provide a certified copy of the transfer order to the receiving court.

(2) Jurisdiction to try and decide attachment cases when the amount of the plaintiff's claim does not exceed $25,000 exclusive of interest and any attorney fees.

(3) Jurisdiction of actions of unlawful entry or detainer as provided in Article 13 (§ 8.01-124 et seq.) of Chapter 3 of Title 8.01, and in Chapter 14 (§ 55.1-1400 et seq.) of Title 55.1, and the maximum jurisdictional limits prescribed in subdivision (1) shall not apply to any claim, counter-claim or cross-claim in an unlawful detainer action that includes a claim for damages sustained or rent against any person obligated on the lease or guarantee of such lease.

(4) Except where otherwise specifically provided, all jurisdiction, power and authority over any civil action or proceeding conferred upon any general district court judge or magistrate under or by virtue of any provisions of the Code.

(5) Jurisdiction to try and decide suits in interpleader involving personal or real property where the amount of money or value of the property is not more than the maximum jurisdictional limits of the general district court. However, the maximum jurisdictional limits prescribed in subdivision (1) shall not apply to any claim, counter-claim, or cross-claim in an interpleader action that is limited to the disposition of an earnest money deposit pursuant to a real estate purchase contract. The action shall be brought in accordance with the procedures for interpleader as set forth in § 8.01-364. However, the general district court shall not have any power to issue injunctions. Actions in interpleader may be brought by either the stakeholder or any of the claimants. The initial pleading shall be either by motion for judgment, by warrant in debt, or by other uniform court form established by the Supreme Court of Virginia. The initial pleading shall briefly set forth the circumstances of the claim and shall name as defendant all parties in interest who are not parties plaintiff.

(6) Jurisdiction to try and decide any cases pursuant to § 2.2-3713 of the Virginia Freedom of Information Act (§ 2.2-3700 et seq.) or § 2.2-3809 of the Government Data Collection and Dissemination Practices Act (§ 2.2-3800 et seq.), for writs of mandamus or for injunctions.

(7) Concurrent jurisdiction with the circuit courts having jurisdiction in such territory to adjudicate habitual offenders pursuant to the provisions of Article 9 (§ 46.2-355.1 et seq.) of Chapter 3 of Title 46.2.

(8) Jurisdiction to try and decide cases alleging a civil violation described in § 18.2-76.

(9) Jurisdiction to try and decide any cases pursuant to § 55.1-1819 of the Property Owners' Association Act (§ 55.1-1800 et seq.) or § 55.1-1959 of the Virginia Condominium Act (§ 55.1-1900 et seq.)

(10) Concurrent jurisdiction with the circuit courts to submit matters to arbitration pursuant to Chapter 21 (§ 8.01-577 et seq.) of Title 8.01 where the amount in controversy is within the jurisdictional limits of the general district court. Any party that disagrees with an order by a general district court granting an application to compel arbitration may appeal such decision to the circuit court pursuant to § 8.01-581.016.

For purposes of this section, the territory served by a county general district court expressly authorized by statute to be established in a city includes the general district court courtroom.

1956, c. 555; 1968, c. 5; 1973, c. 440; 1978, c. 40; 1981, c. 404; 1983, c. 616; 1987, cc. 87, 93; 1988, c. 799; 1990, cc. 217, 471; 1991, c. 135; 1992, cc. 111, 777; 1995, c. 799; 1997, c. 753; 1998, cc. 482, 495; 1999, cc. 945, 987; 2001, cc. 473, 477; 2002, cc. 200, 506, 645; 2004, cc. 344, 460; 2008, cc. 840, 843; 2009, c. 663; 2010, c. 181; 2011, cc. 14, 76, 372, 378, 702; 2016, c. 181; 2017, c. 657; 2019, cc. 240, 787.

§ 16.1-77.1. When general district court may give judgment on forthcoming bond.

A general district court may, on motion, after 10 days' notice of the time and place thereof, give judgment on any forthcoming bond taken by a sheriff or other officer upon a fieri facias issued by such court.

Code 1950, § 8-457; 1977, c. 624; 1983, c. 616; 2007, c. 869.

§ 16.1-77.2. Jurisdiction of partition of personal property and proceedings therefor.

Every general district court shall have jurisdiction of proceedings for partition of personal property, within the limits as to value and in accordance with the provisions hereinafter contained.

When joint owners of personal property of the value of more than $20 but not more than maximum jurisdictional limits of the court as provided in § 16.1-77 (1) cannot agree upon a partition thereof, any party in interest may compel partition, the proceeding for which shall be commenced by a petition presented to a general district court as prescribed in subsection 5 of § 8.01-262. A copy of the petition, together with a notice of the time and place the petitioner will ask for a hearing thereon, shall be served on each of the defendants at least 10 days prior to the day of hearing. The court shall hear and decide the matter without the appointment or use of commissioners.

Any party aggrieved by a final judgment rendered by the general district court in any such proceeding shall have an appeal of right to any circuit court of the county or city having jurisdiction of appeals from such general district court, to be perfected within the time, and in all other respects in accordance with the provisions of law concerning appeals from general district courts in other civil cases.

Code 1950, § 8-703; 1952, c. 252; 1972, c. 368; 1977, c. 624; 1983, c. 616; 2007, c. 869.

§ 16.1-78. Judgment by confession not affected.

None of the provisions of § 16.1-77 shall affect the right of any person to obtain judgment by confession in any court of record having jurisdiction thereof, or in the clerk's office of any such court, when such right exists under some other statute or act, on any claim for money, property or damages, regardless of the amount of such claim for money or damages or the value of such property.

1956, c. 555.

Article 3. Procedure in Civil Cases.

§ 16.1-79. Actions brought on warrant.

A civil action in a general district court may be brought by warrant directed to the sheriff or to any other person authorized to serve process in such county or city, requiring the person against whom the claim is asserted to appear before the court on a certain day, not exceeding sixty days from the date of service thereof, to answer the complaint of the plaintiff set out in the warrant. After the warrant has been issued and delivered for service it shall not be altered, nor any blank filled, except by order of the court.

1956, c. 555; 1991, c. 26.

§ 16.1-79.1. Electronic filing of civil cases.

The general district courts shall accept case data in an electronic format for any civil action filed. The use of the electronic transfer shall be at the option of the plaintiff or the plaintiff's attorney, and if electronic transfer is utilized, the plaintiff or the plaintiff's attorney shall comply with the security and data configuration standards established by the Office of the Executive Secretary of the Supreme Court. If electronic transfer is utilized, the plaintiff or the plaintiff's attorney shall be responsible for filing with the clerk of the general district court the paper copies of any pleading for the proper processing of such civil actions as otherwise required by law, unless the plaintiff or the plaintiff's attorney has established at his expense a system for the filing of a pleading generated through the electronic transfer of data; such system has been authorized by, and meets the filing requirements of, the clerk; and the plaintiff or plaintiff's attorney transmits the process in an electronic format directly with the sheriff as otherwise provided by law. Notwithstanding any electronic transfer, the plaintiff shall remain responsible for payment of any required fees upon case initiation or filing and as otherwise required by law.

2010, cc. 550, 622; 2011, c. 766.

§ 16.1-80. Service of warrant and return thereof.

The officer issuing a warrant shall deliver to the officer to whom it is directed, or to the plaintiff, for service, one or more original warrants and as many copies as there are defendants upon whom it is to be served. Service of the warrant shall be made as provided in Chapter 8 (§ 8.01-285 et seq.) of Title 8.01, but the warrant must be served not less than five days before the return day. Returns shall be made on the original, or on one or more of them if there be more than one issued, and shall show when, where, how and upon whom service was made. The warrant or warrants with the returns thereon shall be delivered to the court prior to the return day thereof, but if not so delivered may, in the discretion of the judge of the court, be delivered before the court convenes on the return day.

1956, c. 555.

§ 16.1-81. Actions brought by motion for judgment.

A civil action in a general district court may be brought by motion for judgment. Such motion shall be in writing, signed by the plaintiff or his attorney, and shall contain a caption setting forth the name of the court and the title of the action, which shall include the names of all parties and the address of each defendant. It shall state the facts on which the plaintiff relies, and shall be sufficient if it clearly informs the defendant or defendants of the true nature of the claim asserted. The motion shall notify the defendant or defendants of the day on which such motion shall be made, which day shall not be more than sixty days from the date of service of the motion.

1956, c. 555; 1990, c. 762.

§ 16.1-81.1. Certain corporations; pro se representation.

When the amount in controversy in any action at law in a general district court does not exceed the sum of $2,500, exclusive of interest, attorney fees contracted for in the instrument, and costs, a corporate plaintiff or defendant, the stock of which is held by no more than five persons and is not publicly offered or planned to be publicly offered at the time of the litigation, may be represented by an officer of that corporation who shall have all the rights and privileges given an individual to represent, plead, and try a case without an attorney, provided that such officer has the unanimous consent of all the shareholders to do so.

2009, c. 666.

§ 16.1-82. Service of motion; return thereon and delivery to the court; how disposed of.

The plaintiff shall file with the clerk of the court an original motion for judgment and as many copies as there are defendants upon whom it is to be served, with the proper fees. The original motion and copies thereof shall then be delivered to the sheriff or other person for service. Service of such motion shall be as provided in Chapter 8 (§ 8.01-285 et seq.) of Title 8.01, but the motion must be served not less than five days before the return day. Returns shall be made on the original motion for judgment and shall show when, where, how and upon whom service was made. The motion or motions with the returns thereon shall be returned by the sheriff or other persons making service to the court within three days of the date service is made. The motion for judgment shall be heard and disposed of by the court in the same manner as if it were a civil warrant. Except as otherwise provided herein, procedure upon such motion for judgment shall conform as nearly as practicable to the procedure in motions for judgment prescribed by Rules of Court for civil actions in courts of record.

1956, c. 555; 1981, c. 576; 1990, c. 943.

§ 16.1-83. Consent of parties required for trial within five days of service.

No trial of a warrant or motion for judgment under this title may be had within five days after service thereof except with the consent of the parties. Proceedings to enforce the rights and privileges conferred by the Virginia Freedom of Information Act (§ 2.2-3700 et seq.) shall be conducted within the time limitations specified in § 2.2-3713.

1956, c. 555; 1990, c. 217.

§ 16.1-83.1. Certification of expert witness opinion at time of service of process.

Every warrant in debt, counter claim, or third party claim in a medical malpractice action, at the time the plaintiff requests service of process upon a defendant, or requests a defendant to accept service of process, shall be deemed a certification that the plaintiff has obtained from an expert whom the plaintiff reasonably believes would qualify as an expert witness pursuant to subsection A of § 8.01-581.20 a written opinion signed by the expert witness that, based upon a reasonable understanding of the facts, the defendant for whom service of process has been requested deviated from the applicable standard of care and the deviation was a proximate cause of the injuries claimed. This certification is not necessary if the plaintiff, in good faith, alleges a medical malpractice action that asserts a theory of liability where expert testimony is unnecessary because the alleged act of negligence clearly lies within the range of the jury's common knowledge and experience.

The certifying expert shall not be required to be an expert witness expected to testify at trial nor shall any defendant be entitled to discover the identity or qualifications of the certifying expert or the nature of the certifying expert opinions. Should the certifying expert be identified as an expert expected to testify at trial, the opinions and bases therefor shall be discoverable pursuant to Rule 4:1 of the Rules of Supreme Court of Virginia with the exception of the expert's status as a certifying expert.

Upon written request of any defendant, the plaintiff shall, within 10 business days after receipt of such request, provide the defendant with a certification form which affirms that the plaintiff had obtained the necessary certifying expert opinion at the time service was requested or affirms that the plaintiff did not need to obtain a certifying expert opinion. The court, upon good cause shown, may conduct an in camera review of the certifying expert opinion obtained by the plaintiff as the court may deem appropriate. If the plaintiff did not obtain a necessary certifying expert opinion at the time the plaintiff requested service of process on a defendant, the court shall impose sanctions according to the provisions of § 8.01-271.1 and may dismiss the case with prejudice.

2005, cc. 649, 692; 2007, c. 489; 2013, cc. 65, 610.

§ 16.1-84. When action or proceeding not lost; when matured for hearing.

In the event the return day of any civil action or other proceeding is a day on which the court does not sit, such action or proceeding shall not be lost, but shall be deemed matured for hearing or other disposition by the court on the first day thereafter on which the court sits for hearing civil actions.

1956, c. 555; 1958, c. 210.

§ 16.1-85. What term "warrant" to include.

Whenever the word "warrant" is used in any section of the Code or act of assembly relating to civil proceedings, it shall, unless the context or use indicates a different meaning, be construed to mean "warrant or motion for judgment."

1956, c. 555.

§ 16.1-86. When action deemed brought.

A civil action on a warrant in a district court shall be deemed brought when the memorandum required by § 8.01-290 is filed with the clerk, magistrate, or other officer authorized to issue warrants and the required fee is paid. The officer issuing the warrant shall note on the memorandum the date and time it is received by him with the required fee.

A civil action on a motion for judgment as authorized in § 16.1-81 shall be deemed brought on the day on which the motion is filed with the court.

Whenever any other pleading in any civil action is filed in a district court, the clerk or his designee shall stamp or mark the date received and time of filing on the face of such pleading.

1956, c. 555; 1980, c. 739; 1990, c. 109.

§ 16.1-86.1. Repealed.

Repealed by Acts 1990, c. 109.

§ 16.1-87. Repealed.

Repealed by Acts 1983, c. 499.

§ 16.1-88. (Effective until October 1, 2019) Procedure when plaintiff sues on sworn claim.

If a civil action in a general district court is upon a contract, express or implied, for the payment of money, or unlawful detainer pursuant to § 55-225 or § 55-248.31 for the payment of money or possession of the premises, or both, or is brought by the Commonwealth or any political subdivision or agency thereof for the collection of taxes or to enforce any other obligation for the payment of money, an affidavit and a copy of the account if there be one and, in actions pursuant to § 55-225 or § 55-248.31, proof of required notice may be made and served on the defendant in accordance with § 8.01-296 with the warrant or motion for judgment as provided in § 8.01-28 for actions at law, whereupon the provisions of § 8.01-28 shall be applicable to the further proceedings therein. The affidavit and the account if there is one and proof of appropriate notice may be attached to the warrant or motion, in which event the combined papers shall be served as a single paper.

1956, c. 555; 1973, c. 440; 1991, c. 503.

§ 16.1-88.01. Counterclaims.

In any proceeding before any general district court a defendant may, at his option, at any time before trial, plead in writing as a counterclaim, any cause of action at law for a money judgment in personam, or any matter which would entitle him to relief in equity in the nature of damages, that he has against the plaintiff or all plaintiffs jointly, whether or not it grows out of any transaction mentioned in the warrant or notice of motion for judgment, whether or not it is for liquidated damages, whether or not it is in tort or contract, and whether or not the amount demanded exceeds the amount claimed by the plaintiff in the warrant or notice of motion for judgment; however, no such counterclaim shall be filed or heard when the amount claimed therein exceeds the amount within the jurisdiction of such court.

Upon the request of either party, bills of particulars and grounds of defense may be ordered to ensure a fair trial on the merits of the issue presented. The court may, in its discretion, hear the counterclaim together with the original case, or may order and hold a separate hearing of any cause of action asserted in a counterclaim. In either event, the court shall render such final judgment on the whole case as the law and the evidence require.

Code 1950, § 8-239.1; 1954, c. 608; 1977, c. 624; 1998, cc. 482, 495.

§ 16.1-88.02. Cross-claims.

Subject to the jurisdictional limitations prescribed by law, in any proceeding before a general district court a defendant may, at his option, at any time before trial, plead in writing as a cross-claim any cause of action that he has against one or more defendants growing out of any matter pleaded in the plaintiff's warrant or notice or motion for judgment. The court may order and hold a separate hearing upon any cause of action asserted in a cross-claim.

Code 1950, § 8-239.2; 1954, c. 608; 1977, c. 624.

§ 16.1-88.03. (Effective October 1, 2019) Pleadings and other papers by certain parties not represented by attorneys.

A. Any corporation, partnership, limited liability company, limited partnership, professional corporation, professional limited liability company, registered limited liability partnership, registered limited liability limited partnership or business trust and the Department of Military Affairs, when the amount claimed in any civil action pursuant to subdivision (1) or (3) of § 16.1-77 does not exceed the jurisdictional amounts authorized in such subsections, exclusive of interest, may prepare, execute, file, and have served on other parties in any proceeding in a general district court a warrant in debt, motion for judgment, warrant in detinue, distress warrant, summons for unlawful detainer, counterclaim, crossclaim, suggestion for summons in garnishment, garnishment summons, order of possession, writ of eviction, writ of fieri facias, interpleader and civil appeal notice without the intervention of an attorney. Such papers may be signed by a corporate officer, a manager of a limited liability company, a general partner of any form of partnership or a trustee of any business trust, or such corporate officer, with the approval of the board of directors, or manager, general partner or trustee may authorize in writing an employee, a person licensed under the provisions of § 54.1-2106.1, or the property manager or the managing agent of a landlord as defined in § 55.1-1200 pursuant to the written property management agreement to sign such papers as the agent of the business entity. Only an agency employee designated in writing by the Adjutant General may sign such papers on behalf of the Department of Military Affairs. However, this section shall not apply to an action under subdivision (1) or (3) of § 16.1-77 which was assigned to a corporation, partnership, limited liability company, limited partnership, professional corporation, professional limited liability company, registered limited liability partnership, registered limited liability limited partnership or business trust, or individual solely for the purpose of enforcing an obligation owed or right inuring to another.

B. Nothing in this section shall allow a nonlawyer to file a bill of particulars or grounds of defense or to argue motions, issue a subpoena, rule to show cause, or capias; file or interrogate at debtor interrogatories; or to file, issue or argue any other paper, pleading or proceeding not set forth in subsection A.

C. The provisions of § 8.01-271.1 shall apply to any pleading, motion or other paper filed or made pursuant to this section.

D. Parties not represented by counsel, and who have made an appearance in the case, shall promptly notify in writing the clerk of court wherein the litigation is pending, and any adverse party, of any change in the party's address necessary for accurate mailing or service of any pleadings or notices. In the absence of such notification, a mailing to or service upon a party at the most recent address contained in the court file of the case shall be deemed effective service or other notice.

1990, c. 645; 1992, c. 814; 1993, cc. 473, 478; 2003, cc. 665, 667; 2004, cc. 338, 365; 2005, c. 136; 2006, c. 374; 2017, c. 690; 2019, cc. 180, 477, 700.

§ 16.1-88.03. (Effective until October 1, 2019) Pleadings and other papers by certain parties not represented by attorneys.

A. Any corporation, partnership, limited liability company, limited partnership, professional corporation, professional limited liability company, registered limited liability partnership, registered limited liability limited partnership or business trust and the Department of Military Affairs, when the amount claimed in any civil action pursuant to subdivision (1) or (3) of § 16.1-77 does not exceed the jurisdictional amounts authorized in such subsections, exclusive of interest, may prepare, execute, file, and have served on other parties in any proceeding in a general district court a warrant in debt, motion for judgment, warrant in detinue, distress warrant, summons for unlawful detainer, counterclaim, crossclaim, suggestion for summons in garnishment, garnishment summons, order of possession, writ of eviction, writ of fieri facias, interpleader and civil appeal notice without the intervention of an attorney. Such papers may be signed by a corporate officer, a manager of a limited liability company, a general partner of any form of partnership or a trustee of any business trust, or such corporate officer, with the approval of the board of directors, or manager, general partner or trustee may authorize in writing an employee, a person licensed under the provisions of § 54.1-2106.1, or the property manager or the managing agent of a landlord as defined in § 55-248.4 pursuant to the written property management agreement to sign such papers as the agent of the business entity. Only an agency employee designated in writing by the Adjutant General may sign such papers on behalf of the Department of Military Affairs. However, this section shall not apply to an action under subdivision (1) or (3) of § 16.1-77 which was assigned to a corporation, partnership, limited liability company, limited partnership, professional corporation, professional limited liability company, registered limited liability partnership, registered limited liability limited partnership or business trust, or individual solely for the purpose of enforcing an obligation owed or right inuring to another.

B. Nothing in this section shall allow a nonlawyer to file a bill of particulars or grounds of defense or to argue motions, issue a subpoena, rule to show cause, or capias; file or interrogate at debtor interrogatories; or to file, issue or argue any other paper, pleading or proceeding not set forth in subsection A.

C. The provisions of § 8.01-271.1 shall apply to any pleading, motion or other paper filed or made pursuant to this section.

D. Parties not represented by counsel, and who have made an appearance in the case, shall promptly notify in writing the clerk of court wherein the litigation is pending, and any adverse party, of any change in the party's address necessary for accurate mailing or service of any pleadings or notices. In the absence of such notification, a mailing to or service upon a party at the most recent address contained in the court file of the case shall be deemed effective service or other notice.

1990, c. 645; 1992, c. 814; 1993, cc. 473, 478; 2003, cc. 665, 667; 2004, cc. 338, 365; 2005, c. 136; 2006, c. 374; 2017, c. 690; 2019, cc. 180, 477, 700.

§ 16.1-88. (Effective October 1, 2019) Procedure when plaintiff sues on sworn claim.

If a civil action in a general district court is upon a contract, express or implied, for the payment of money, or unlawful detainer pursuant to § 55.1-1245 or 55.1-1415 for the payment of money or possession of the premises, or both, or is brought by the Commonwealth or any political subdivision or agency thereof for the collection of taxes or to enforce any other obligation for the payment of money, an affidavit and a copy of the account if there be one and, in actions pursuant to § 55.1-1245 or 55.1-1415, proof of required notice may be made and served on the defendant in accordance with § 8.01-296 with the warrant or motion for judgment as provided in § 8.01-28 for actions at law, whereupon the provisions of § 8.01-28 shall be applicable to the further proceedings therein. The affidavit and the account if there is one and proof of appropriate notice may be attached to the warrant or motion, in which event the combined papers shall be served as a single paper.

1956, c. 555; 1973, c. 440; 1991, c. 503.

§ 16.1-88.1. Repealed.

Repealed by Acts 1980, c. 183.

§ 16.1-88.2. Evidence of medical reports or records; testimony of health care provider or custodian of records.

In a civil suit tried in a general district court or appealed to the circuit court to recover damages for personal injuries or to resolve any dispute with an insurance company or health care provider, either party may present evidence as to the extent, nature, and treatment of the injury, the examination of the person so injured, and the costs of such treatment and examination by the following:

1. A report from the treating or examining health care provider as defined in § 8.01-581.1 or a health care provider licensed outside of the Commonwealth for his treatment of the plaintiff outside of the Commonwealth. Such medical report shall be admitted if the party intending to present evidence by the use of a report gives the opposing party or parties a copy of the report and written notice of such intention 10 days in advance of trial and if attached to such report is a sworn statement of (i) the treating or examining health care provider that (a) the person named therein was treated or examined by such health care provider, (b) the information contained in the report is true and accurate and fully descriptive as to the nature and extent of the injury, and (c) any statement of costs contained in the report is true and accurate or (ii) the custodian of such report that the same is a true and accurate copy of the report; or

2. The records or bills of a hospital or similar medical facility at which the treatment or examination was performed. Such hospital or other medical facility records or bills shall be admitted if (i) the party intending to present evidence by the use of records or bills gives the opposing party or parties a copy of the records or bills and written notice of such intention 10 days in advance of trial and (ii) attached to the records or bills is a sworn statement of the custodian thereof that the same is a true and accurate copy of the records or bills of such hospital or other medical facility.

If, thereafter, the plaintiff or defendant summons the health care provider or custodian making such statement to testify in proper person or by deposition, the court shall determine which party shall pay the fee and costs for such appearance or depositions, or may apportion the same among the parties in such proportions as the ends of justice may require. If such health care provider or custodian is not subject to subpoena for cross-examination in court or by a deposition, then the court shall allow a reasonable opportunity for the party seeking the subpoena for such health care provider or custodian to obtain his testimony as the ends of justice may require. The plaintiff may only present evidence pursuant to this section in circuit court if he has not requested an amount in excess of the ad damnum in the motion for judgment filed in the general district court.

1978, c. 490; 1983, c. 616; 1985, c. 379; 1989, c. 563; 1990, c. 279; 1996, c. 749; 2005, c. 811; 2007, cc. 425, 869; 2013, cc. 78, 145; 2014, cc. 25, 85, 446.

§ 16.1-89. Subpoena duces tecum; attorney-issued subpoena duces tecum.

A judge or clerk of a district court may issue a subpoena duces tecum pursuant to the terms of Rule 4:9A of the Rules of the Supreme Court of Virginia except that such subpoena may be directed to a party to the case as well as to a person who is not a party.

Subpoenas duces tecum for medical records issued by an attorney shall be subject to the provisions of §§ 8.01-413 and 32.1-127.1:03 except that no separate fee for issuance shall be imposed.

A subpoena duces tecum may also be issued by an attorney-at-law who is an active member of the Virginia State Bar at the time of issuance, as an officer of the court. Any such subpoena duces tecum shall be on a form approved by the Committee on District Courts, signed by the attorney as if a pleading and shall include the attorney's address. A copy, together with the attorney's certificate of service pursuant to Rule 1:12, shall be mailed or delivered to the clerk's office of the court in which the case is pending on the day of issuance by the attorney. The law governing subpoenas duces tecum issued by a clerk shall apply mutatis mutandis, except that attorneys may not issue subpoenas duces tecum in those cases in which they may not issue a summons as provided in § 8.01-407. A sheriff shall not be required to serve an attorney-issued subpoena that is not issued at least five business days prior to the date production of evidence is desired. When an attorney-at-law transmits one or more subpoenas duces tecum to a sheriff to be served in his jurisdiction, the provisions in § 8.01-407 regarding such transmittals shall apply.

If the time for compliance with a subpoena duces tecum issued by an attorney is less than 14 days after service of the subpoena, the person to whom it is directed may serve upon the party issuing the subpoena a written objection setting forth any grounds upon which such production, inspection or testing should not be had. If objection is made, the party on whose behalf the subpoena was issued and served shall not be entitled to the requested production, inspection or testing, except pursuant to an order of the court, but may, upon notice to the person to whom the subpoena was directed, move for an order to compel production, inspection or testing. Upon such timely motion, the court may quash, modify or sustain the subpoena.

1956, c. 555; 1979, c. 668; 1984, c. 500; 1986, c. 160; 2000, c. 813; 2004, c. 335.

§ 16.1-90. Recognizance upon continuation of case.

Judges of courts not of record may, upon the continuance of any case, require the witnesses or any of them, to enter into recognizance in such penalty as the judge may deem proper, either with or without security, for their appearance at a subsequent date to give evidence in the case, such recognizance to conform to the requirements of §§ 19.2-135 through 19.2-137 for taking recognizance of witnesses.

1956, c. 555; 1960, c. 372.

§ 16.1-91. Repealed.

Repealed by Acts 1984, c. 25.

§ 16.1-91.1. Costs to be included in judgment on forthcoming bond.

The judge of a general district court, on giving judgment on a forthcoming bond, shall include in the costs of the judgment the clerk's fee as stated in subdivision A 21 of § 17.1-275; and the clerk shall not receive any fee or reward for any service he is required to perform by the provisions of § 8.01-529, except that specified in subdivision A 21 of § 17.1-275.

Code 1950, § 8-460; 1962, c. 10; 1977, c. 624.

§ 16.1-91.2. Judge to keep record of judgment on forthcoming bond; how to endorse execution.

The judge of the general district court, rendering a judgment under the provisions of Chapter 19 (§ 8.01-526 et seq.) of Title 8.01, shall keep a record thereof in the same manner as he is required by law in other cases. He shall not stay execution upon such judgment, and shall endorse on any fieri facias issued thereon "no security is to be taken."

Code 1950, § 8-461; 1962, c. 10; 1977, c. 624.

§ 16.1-92. Repealed.

Repealed by Acts 2007, c. 869, cl. 2.

§ 16.1-93. Principles applicable to trial of cases.

Every action or other proceeding in a court not of record shall be tried according to the principles of law and equity, and when the same conflict the principles of equity shall prevail. No warrant, motion or other pleading shall be dismissed by reason of a mere defect, irregularity or omission in the proceedings or in the form of the pleadings when the same may be corrected by an order of the court. The court may direct such proceedings and enter such orders as may be necessary to correct any such defects, irregularities and omissions, and to bring about a trial of the merits of the controversy and promote substantial justice to all parties. The court may make such provisions as to costs and continuances as may be just.

1956, c. 555.

§ 16.1-93.1. Use of telephonic communication systems or electronic video and audio communication systems to conduct hearing.

Notwithstanding any other provision of law, in any proceeding under this chapter in which a party or witness is incarcerated or when otherwise authorized by the court, the court may, in its discretion, conduct any hearing using a telephonic communication system or an electronic audio and video communication system to provide for the appearance of any parties and witnesses. Any electronic audio and video communication system used to conduct such a hearing shall meet the standards set forth in subsection B of § 19.2-3.1.

2001, c. 513.

§ 16.1-94. Judgment to be noted on papers; formal orders may be entered.

Whenever a judgment is rendered in a court not of record the judgment shall be entered on the warrant, motion for judgment, counterclaim, cross-claim or other pleading and signed by the judge, or the signature of the judge may be affixed by a facsimile stamp, in which event the judge shall initial a notation of the judgment made on the warrant or other paper. If the action is on a note, bond or other written obligation, the date and amount of the judgment rendered shall be noted thereon, to which notation the judge or clerk shall affix his name or his initials. Nothing in this section shall be construed to prevent the judge from entering a formal order in any case in which he deems such order to be appropriate, including but not limited to settlement and installment orders endorsed by counsel, or to affect the validity of any formal order so entered. If such action is on a lease for the recovery of rent or possession of property this section shall not operate to require marking of such lease unless the judge deems such marking necessary.

1956, c. 555; 1962, c. 361; 2004, c. 341.

§ 16.1-94.01. When and how satisfaction entered on judgment.

A. When satisfaction of any judgment rendered in a court not of record is made, the judgment creditor shall by himself, or his agent or attorney, give written notice of such satisfaction, within 30 days of receipt, to the clerk of the court in which the judgment was rendered. Such notice shall include the docket number, the names of the parties, and the date of the judgment. The clerk of the court shall then mark the judgment satisfied. For any money judgment marked as satisfied pursuant to this section, nothing herein shall satisfy an unexecuted order of possession entered pursuant to § 8.01-126.

B. If the judgment creditor fails to comply with subsection A, the judgment debtor, his heirs or personal representatives, may, on motion, after 10 days' notice thereof to the judgment creditor, or his assignee, his personal representative, or his agent or attorney, apply to the court in which the judgment was rendered to have the judgment marked satisfied. Upon proof that the judgment has been satisfied, the clerk shall mark the judgment satisfied. If the judgment creditor or his legal representatives cannot be reasonably located, the notice may be published and posted as an order of publication is required to be published and posted under §§ 8.01-316 and 8.01-317.

C. The cost of such proceedings, including reasonable attorney fees and the cost of publication, may be ordered to be paid by the judgment creditor.

1999, c. 370; 2015, c. 547; 2017, c. 481.

§ 16.1-94.1. Limitations on enforcement of district court judgments.

For judgments entered in a general district court on or after January 1, 1985, no execution shall be issued or action brought on such judgment, including a judgment in favor of the Commonwealth, after ten years from the date of such judgment except as provided in § 16.1-69.55 B 4.

1983, c. 499.

§ 16.1-95. Abstract of judgment.

At any time while the papers in any case in which a judgment has been rendered by a general district court are retained by the court, the judge or clerk of the court shall certify and deliver an abstract of the judgment to any person interested therein. In the absence of any such judge or clerk, or in the event of a vacancy in the office of such judge or clerk, such abstract of judgment may be made and certified by the substitute judge or clerk, if there be one, or by any other judge of a general district court in such county or city.

1956, c. 555; 1983, c. 499.

§ 16.1-96. What abstract to contain.

An abstract of a judgment rendered in a court not of record shall contain the information required by § 8.01-449 for entry in the judgment dockets of courts of record, except that it shall not be necessary to include any information as to executions which have been issued thereon.

1956, c. 555.

§ 16.1-97. Repealed.

Repealed by Acts 1987, c. 98.

§ 16.1-97.1. When a new trial is granted.

A. No new trial may be granted from any judgment in a district court unless a motion by one of the parties is made within thirty days after the date of judgment, not including the date of entry of such judgment. The motion for new trial shall be heard by the judge who rendered the judgment, but if the judge is not in office, is absent from the jurisdiction, or is otherwise unavailable to hear the motion for new trial, such motion may be heard by a judge of that district court.

B. A hearing shall be held by the court, as provided herein, and the court shall rule on any such motions not later than forty-five days after the date of judgment, not including the date of entry of such judgment. Nothing contained in this section shall operate to alter the granting of a new trial by the court pursuant to § 8.01-428, or to alter the requirements for appeal from any judgment of any district court as otherwise provided by law.

1987, c. 98; 1988, c. 506.

§ 16.1-98. Fieri facias or writ of possession on judgment.

Upon a judgment being rendered in a general district court a writ of fieri facias or a writ of possession shall be issued thereon only upon request of the judgment creditor, his assignee or his attorney. When the judgment is for personal property and the defendant is not given the option under § 8.01-121 to pay the amount of the judgment or surrender the property, the plaintiff may, at his option, have a writ of possession for the specific property and a writ of fieri facias for the damages or profits and costs, and if the writ of possession prove ineffectual he may have a writ of fieri facias for the alternate value. The judge or clerk shall write or stamp upon the docket of the court, or upon the original warrant or motion, the issuing of each such writ and the date of issuance.

1956, c. 555; 1968, c. 260; 1974, c. 666; 1977, c. 624; 1983, c. 499.

§ 16.1-99. When and where executions returnable; to whom directed.

A writ of fieri facias or a writ of possession issued from a general district court shall be made returnable within 90 days to the court from which it was issued, except that a writ of fieri facias issued in the instance of a wage garnishment shall be returnable not more than 180 days after the date of issuance. If, after the return day of the writ and the completion of any garnishment, interrogatory or other proceeding in connection therewith, the papers in the case have been returned to a circuit court, then the writ and other papers in connection with such proceeding shall likewise be returned to the circuit court and filed with the papers in the case. A writ of fieri facias may be directed to the sheriff of any county or to the sergeant or constable of any corporation.

1956, c. 555; 1979, c. 45; 2003, c. 234.

§ 16.1-100. Additional executions; by whom issued.

Subject to the limitations prescribed in Chapter 17 (§ 8.01-426 et seq.) of Title 8.01, additional executions may be issued as provided in § 8.01-475. Such executions shall be issued by the judge or clerk of the general district court and shall be returned to the court in which such papers are held on the return day of the execution.

1956, c. 555; 1983, c. 499.

§ 16.1-101. Proceedings against officer failing to make or making improper return.

If an officer fail to make due return of any execution issued from a court not of record, he may, on motion of the plaintiff and after ten days' notice, be fined from time to time by the judge of such court in an amount not less than five nor more than twenty dollars for each offense. And if an officer make such return upon an execution issued from a court not of record as would, on a motion against the officer, authorize judgment to be entered against him for all or any part of the amount of such execution if the execution had issued from a court of record, the creditor on whose behalf such execution issued, or his personal representative, may, on a motion before the judge of such court after like notice obtain such judgment against the officer, his sureties and others as could be given by a court of record if the execution had issued therefrom. Section 16.1-106 with respect to appeals in civil actions shall apply to such judgment. Notwithstanding the provisions of this section any such officer may be proceeded against as provided in Chapter 16 (§ 15.2-1600 et seq.) of Title 15.2, or a motion for judgment may be brought as authorized in § 8.01-227.

1956, c. 555.

§ 16.1-102. Officers and sureties liable for money collected after return day.

If, after the return day of an execution issued on a judgment rendered by a court not of record, an officer shall collect money or take possession of property under such execution, he and his sureties shall be liable for such money or property in like manner as if it had been collected or taken before the return day.

1956, c. 555.

§ 16.1-103. Proceedings by interrogatories.

Whenever a fieri facias has been issued upon a judgment rendered in a general district court the judge or clerk of the court may issue the summons provided for in § 8.01-506. In such case the judge of the general district court shall have all of the powers and authority respecting interrogatories conferred by §§ 8.01-506 to 8.01-510 upon any court or judge mentioned therein. The commissioner before whom any person is required to appear by such summons shall have the same powers and authority as if such summons had been issued under § 8.01-506. All interrogatories, answers, reports and other proceedings under such summons, and also all money, evidences of indebtedness and other security in the hands of an officer which are directed by any section of Chapter 18 (§ 8.01-466 et seq.) of Title 8.01 to be returned or delivered to such court or judge, or to the clerk's office of such court, shall, when the summons was issued by a judge of a general district court be returned or delivered in like manner to the court from which the summons issued.

From any order of the judge of the general district court which involves the disposition of any money or property exceeding the sum of fifty dollars in value, exclusive of interest, there shall be an appeal in the same manner and upon the same conditions as in appeals from judgments rendered in civil matters in general district courts.

1956, c. 555; 1978, c. 66; 1983, c. 499.

§ 16.1-104. Repealed.

Repealed by Acts 1983, c. 499.

§ 16.1-105. Attachments.

The proceedings on any attachment brought in a court not of record shall conform to the provisions of Chapter 20 (§ 8.01-533 et seq.) of Title 8.01, but if an attachment is returned executed and the defendant has not been served with a copy thereof, and the amount claimed in the attachment does not exceed $500, exclusive of interest and any attorney's fees contracted for in the instrument, the judge or clerk of the court, upon affidavit in conformity with §§ 8.01-316 and 8.01-317, shall forthwith cause a copy of the attachment to be posted at the front door of the courthouse of the county or the front door of the courtroom of the city or town wherein the attachment was issued, and shall file a certificate of the fact with the papers in the case, and, in addition to such posting, the plaintiff in the attachment or his attorney shall give to the judge or his clerk the last known address or place of abode of the defendant, verified by affidavit, and the judge or clerk shall forthwith mail a copy of the attachment to the defendant at his last known address or place of abode, or if the defendant be a corporation, at its last known address. The mailing of the copy as herein required shall be certified by the judge or clerk in writing, and such certification shall be filed with the papers in the case. Fifteen days after the copy of the attachment has been posted and a copy thereof mailed as herein required, the court may hear and decide the attachment. If the amount claimed in the attachment is more than $500, exclusive of interest and any attorney's fees contracted for in the instrument, an order of publication shall be entered and published and other proceedings had in accordance with the provisions of §§ 8.01-316, 8.01-317, 8.01-318, and 8.01-320. Personal service on a nonresident defendant out of this Commonwealth as provided in § 8.01-320 shall have the same effect, and no other, as an order of publication duly executed or the posting and mailing of a copy of the attachment as provided herein.

If any such attachment is levied on real estate, the court shall not take cognizance of the case, but the same shall be forthwith removed to a court of record having jurisdiction of other actions removed therefrom, to be further proceeded with in such court of record as if the attachment had originated therein.

1956, c. 555; 2010, c. 343.

§ 16.1-106. (Effective until October 1, 2019) Appeals from courts not of record in civil cases.

From any order entered or judgment rendered in a court not of record in a civil case in which the matter in controversy is of greater value than $20, exclusive of interest, any attorney fees contracted for in the instrument, and costs, or when the case involves the constitutionality or validity of a statute of the Commonwealth, or of an ordinance or bylaw of a municipal corporation, or of the enforcement of rights and privileges conferred by the Virginia Freedom of Information Act (§ 2.2-3700 et seq.), or of a protective order pursuant to § 19.2-152.10, or of an action filed by a condominium unit owners' association or unit owner pursuant to § 55-79.80:2, or of an action filed by a property owners' association or lot owner pursuant to § 55-513, there shall be an appeal of right, if taken within 10 days after such order or judgment, to a court of record. Such appeal shall be to a court of record having jurisdiction within the territory of the court from which the appeal is taken and shall be heard de novo.

The court from which an appeal is sought may refuse to suspend the execution of a judgment that refuses, grants, modifies, or dissolves an injunction in a case brought pursuant to § 2.2-3713 of the Virginia Freedom of Information Act. A protective order issued pursuant to § 19.2-152.10, including a protective order required by § 18.2-60.4, shall remain in effect upon petition for or the pendency of an appeal or writ of error unless ordered suspended by the judge of a circuit court or so directed in a writ of supersedeas by the Court of Appeals or the Supreme Court.

1956, c. 555; 1977, c. 624; 1990, c. 217; 1997, c. 831; 2009, c. 729; 2013, cc. 73, 97; 2014, c. 784; 2015, c. 714.

§ 16.1-106. (Effective October 1, 2019) Appeals from courts not of record in civil cases.

From any order entered or judgment rendered in a court not of record in a civil case in which the matter in controversy is of greater value than $20, exclusive of interest, any attorney fees contracted for in the instrument, and costs, or when the case involves the constitutionality or validity of a statute of the Commonwealth, or of an ordinance or bylaw of a municipal corporation, or of the enforcement of rights and privileges conferred by the Virginia Freedom of Information Act (§ 2.2-3700 et seq.), or of a protective order pursuant to § 19.2-152.10, or of an action filed by a condominium unit owners' association or unit owner pursuant to § 55.1-1959, or of an action filed by a property owners' association or lot owner pursuant to § 55.1-1819, there shall be an appeal of right, if taken within 10 days after such order or judgment, to a court of record. Such appeal shall be to a court of record having jurisdiction within the territory of the court from which the appeal is taken and shall be heard de novo.

The court from which an appeal is sought may refuse to suspend the execution of a judgment that refuses, grants, modifies, or dissolves an injunction in a case brought pursuant to § 2.2-3713 of the Virginia Freedom of Information Act. A protective order issued pursuant to § 19.2-152.10, including a protective order required by § 18.2-60.4, shall remain in effect upon petition for or the pendency of an appeal or writ of error unless ordered suspended by the judge of a circuit court or so directed in a writ of supersedeas by the Court of Appeals or the Supreme Court.

1956, c. 555; 1977, c. 624; 1990, c. 217; 1997, c. 831; 2009, c. 729; 2013, cc. 73, 97; 2014, c. 784; 2015, c. 714.

§ 16.1-106.1. Withdrawal of appeal in civil cases.

A. A party who has appealed a final judgment or order rendered by a general district court or a juvenile and domestic relations district court in a civil case may seek to withdraw that appeal at any time.

1. If the appeal has not been perfected by posting a required appeal bond or paying required costs, or within 10 days after entry of the judgment or order when no appeal bond or costs are required to perfect the appeal, the appeal may be withdrawn by filing in the district court that entered the judgment or order and serving, in person or by first-class mail, on all parties or their counsel a written notice of intent to withdraw the appeal. When the appeal is withdrawn in the district court, the judgment or order of the district court shall have the same effect as if no appeal had been noted.

2. After the appeal is perfected by posting a required appeal bond or paying required costs, or after 10 days have elapsed since the entry of the judgment or order when no appeal bond or costs are required to perfect the appeal, an appealing party may request that the appeal be withdrawn by filing in the circuit court and serving, in person or by first-class mail, on all parties or their counsel a written notice of intent to withdraw the appeal.

B. Upon receipt of a notice of intent to withdraw an appeal filed in the circuit court, any party to the appeal, or the circuit court on its own motion, may give notice of a hearing, which shall be scheduled no later than the date set by the circuit court for trial of the appeal. Unless the hearing is scheduled at the time previously set for trial of the appeal, notice of the hearing shall be given, in person or by first-class mail, to all parties or their counsel, any non-party who has posted an appeal bond, and, when appropriate, the Department of Social Services, Division of Child Support Enforcement.

C. At the hearing, the circuit court shall determine whether any party objects to the proposed withdrawal. A party may object to the withdrawal of an appeal by filing in the circuit court and serving, in person or by first-class mail, on all parties or their counsel a written notice of objection to withdrawal of the appeal. If such a written objection is filed and served within a reasonable period after service of the notice of intent to withdraw the appeal, upon a showing of good cause by the party objecting to the withdrawal of the appeal, the circuit court may decline to permit the withdrawal of the appeal. If no such written objection is timely filed, the appeal shall be deemed to be withdrawn and, subject to subsections E and F, the circuit court shall enter an order disposing of the case in accordance with the judgment or order entered in the district court.

D. If a party who has appealed a judgment or order of a district court fails to appear in circuit court either at the time for setting the appeal for trial or on the trial date, the circuit court may, upon the motion of any party, enter an order treating the appeal as withdrawn and disposing of the case in accordance with this section. If no party appears for trial, the court may deem the appeal to be withdrawn without a motion and enter an order disposing of the case in accordance with this section.

E. Upon the withdrawal of an appeal from a general district court, the circuit court shall, upon request of a party who did not appeal the judgment or order, determine whether, as a result of the appeal, a party has a right to additional relief in the circuit court which has accrued since the appeal was noted, including but not limited to attorneys' fees provided for by contract or statute. Subject to any rights of a surety pursuant to § 16.1-110, the circuit court shall also order its clerk to disburse any cash bond posted to perfect the appeal as follows:

1. First, to the clerk of the court to cover taxable costs in the circuit court as provided by statute;

2. Second, to the prevailing party in an amount sufficient to satisfy any judgment or order entered in the general district court and any additional relief granted by the circuit court; and

3. Third, the balance, if any, to the person who posted the bond in the general district court.

In addition, the circuit court shall enter such order as may be appropriate to conclude all matters arising out of the appeal from the general district court.

F. Upon the withdrawal of an appeal from a juvenile and domestic relations district court, the circuit court shall, upon request of a party who did not appeal the judgment or order, determine whether, as a result of the appeal, a party has a right to additional relief in the circuit court which has accrued since the appeal was noted, including but not limited to attorneys' fees provided for by contract or statute. Subject to any rights of a surety pursuant to § 16.1-110, the circuit court shall also order its clerk to disburse any cash bond posted to perfect the appeal as follows:

1. First, to the clerk of the court to cover taxable costs in the circuit court as provided by statute;

2. Second, to the prevailing party in an amount sufficient to satisfy any judgment or order entered in the juvenile and domestic relations district court and any additional relief granted by the circuit court; and

3. Third, the balance, if any, to the person who posted the bond in the juvenile and domestic relations district court.

In addition, the circuit court shall enter such order as may be appropriate to conclude all matters arising out of the petition or motion filed in the juvenile and domestic relations district court and the appeal in circuit court, consistent with the judgment or order entered in the juvenile and domestic relations district court, as modified by the grant of any additional relief by the circuit court pursuant to this subsection. Unless the circuit court orders that the case remain in the circuit court, the case shall be remanded to the juvenile and domestic relations district court for purposes of enforcement and future modification and shall be subject to all the requirements of § 16.1-297.

2008, c. 706.

§ 16.1-107. Requirements for appeal.

A. No appeal shall be allowed unless and until the party applying for the same or someone for him shall give bond, in an amount and with sufficient surety approved by the judge or by his clerk if there is one, or in an amount sufficient to satisfy the judgment of the court in which it was rendered. Either such amount shall include the award of attorney fees, if any. Such bond shall be posted within 30 days from the date of judgment, except for an appeal from the judgment of a general district court on an unlawful detainer pursuant to § 8.01-129. However, no appeal bond shall be required of a plaintiff in a civil case where the defendant has not asserted a counterclaim, the Commonwealth or when an appeal is proper to protect the estate of a decedent, an infant, a convict, or an insane person, or the interest of a county, city, town or transportation district created pursuant to the Transportation District Act of 1964 (§ 33.2-1900 et seq.) of Title 33.2. No appeal bond shall be required of a defendant with indemnity coverage through a policy of liability insurance sufficient to satisfy the judgment if the defendant's insurer provides a written irrevocable confirmation of coverage in the amount of the judgment. If defendant's insurer does not provide a written irrevocable confirmation of coverage in the amount of the judgment then an appeal bond will be required.

B. In all civil cases, except trespass, ejectment, unlawful detainer against a former owner based upon a foreclosure against that owner, or any action involving the recovering rents, no indigent person shall be required to post an appeal bond. In cases of unlawful detainer against a former owner based upon a foreclosure against that owner, a person who has been determined to be indigent pursuant to the guidelines set forth in § 19.2-159 shall post an appeal bond within 30 days from the date of judgment.

C. In cases of unlawful detainer for a residential dwelling unit, notwithstanding the provisions of § 8.01-129, an appeal bond shall be posted by the defendant with payment into the general district court in the amount of outstanding rent, late charges, attorney fees, and any other charges or damages due, as contracted for in the rental agreement, and as amended on the unlawful detainer by the court. If such amount is not so paid, any such appeal shall not be perfected as a matter of law. Upon perfection of an appeal, the defendant shall pay the rental amount as contracted for in the rental agreement to the plaintiff on or before the fifth day of each month. If any such rental payment is not so paid, upon written motion of the plaintiff with a copy of such written motion mailed by regular mail to the tenant, the judge of the circuit court shall, without hearing, enter judgment for the amount of outstanding rent, late charges, attorney fees, and any other charges or damages due as of that date, subtracting any payments made by such tenant as reflected in the court accounts and on a written affidavit submitted by the plaintiff, plaintiff's managing agent, or plaintiff's attorney with a copy of such affidavit mailed by regular mail to the tenant, and an order of possession without further hearings or proceedings in such court. Any funds held in a court account shall be released to the plaintiff without further hearing or proceeding of the court unless the defendant has filed a motion to retain some or all of such funds and the court, after a hearing, enters an order finding that the defendant is likely to succeed on the merits of a counterclaim alleging money damages against the plaintiff, in which case funds shall be held by order of such court.

D. If such bond is furnished by or on behalf of any party against whom judgment has been rendered for money or property or both, the bond shall be conditioned for the performance and satisfaction of such judgment or order as may be entered against such party on appeal, and for the payment of all costs and damages which may be awarded against him in the appellate court. If the appeal is by a party against whom there is no recovery except for costs, the bond shall be conditioned for the payment of such costs and damages as may be awarded against him on the appeal.

E. In addition to the foregoing, any party applying for appeal shall, within 30 days from the date of the judgment, pay to the clerk of the court from which the appeal is taken the amount of the writ tax of the court to which the appeal is taken and costs as required by subdivision A 13 of § 17.1-275, including all fees for service of process of the notice of appeal in the circuit court pursuant to § 16.1-112.

1956, c. 555; 1972, c. 585; 1978, c. 501; 1992, c. 565; 1993, c. 970; 1998, c. 266; 2004, c. 366; 2006, c. 116; 2007, c. 869; 2008, c. 706; 2010, c. 267; 2011, c. 58; 2017, c. 657; 2019, c. 785.

§ 16.1-108. Deposit of money in lieu of bond.

In lieu of giving bond with surety as provided in this article, any party appealing from the judgment or order of the court may deposit with the judge or clerk thereof, who shall issue his official receipt therefor, such sum of money as the judge or clerk may estimate to be sufficient to discharge any judgment or order which may be entered by the court of record on the trial of the appeal to secure the appeal bond. The money so deposited shall be transmitted in cash, by check of the court, surety bond, or bank check, or by draft from the escrow account of the appealing party's attorney to the clerk of the court to which the appeal is taken, who shall likewise issue his official receipt therefor.

1956, c. 555; 1975, c. 227; 1988, c. 698; 2007, c. 131.

§ 16.1-109. Appellate court may require new or additional security.

A. The court to which the appeal is taken may on motion for good cause shown, after reasonable notice to the appellant, require the appellant to give new or additional security, and if such security be not given within the time prescribed by the appellate court the appeal shall be dismissed with costs, and the judgment or order of the court from which the appeal was taken shall remain in effect and the appellate court shall award execution thereon, with costs, against the appellant and his surety.

B. When a bond or other security is required by law to be posted or given in connection with an appeal or removal from a district court, and there is either (i) a defect in such bond or other security as a result of an error of the district court, or (ii) the district court erroneously failed to require the bond or other security, and the defect or failure is discovered prior to sending the case to the circuit court, the district court shall order that the appellant or applicant for removal cure such defect or failure within a period not longer than the initial period of time for posting the bond or giving the security. If the error or failure is discovered after the case has been sent to the circuit court, the circuit court shall return the case to the district court for the district court to order the appellant or applicant for removal to cure the defect or post the required bond or give the required security within a period of time not longer than the initial period of time for posting the bond or giving the security for removal. Failure to comply with such order shall result in the disallowance of the appeal or denial of the application for removal.

1956, c. 555; 2007, c. 464.

§ 16.1-110. Bankruptcy of appellant does not release surety.

No surety in any appeal bond given by the appellant shall be released by the appellant's being adjudicated a bankrupt at any time subsequent to the judgment rendered in the court not of record, but such surety shall be entitled to make any defense on the trial of the appeal that the appellant could have made, except the defense of bankruptcy.

1956, c. 555.

§ 16.1-111. Court to which appeal sent.

The party taking an appeal may, when there is more than one court having jurisdiction, direct to which of such courts the appeal shall be sent for trial, but in the absence of such directions the judge or clerk shall send the same to any court having jurisdiction.

1956, c. 555.

§ 16.1-112. All papers transmitted to appellate court; further proceedings.

The judge or clerk of any court from which an appeal is taken under this article shall promptly transmit to the clerk of the appellate court the case papers, which shall include the original warrant or warrants or other notices or pleadings with the judgment endorsed thereon, together with all pleadings, exhibits, and other papers filed in the trial of the case. The required bond, and, if applicable, the money deposited to secure such bond and the writ tax and costs paid pursuant to § 16.1-107 shall also be submitted, along with the fees for service of process of the notice of appeal in the circuit court. Upon receipt of the foregoing by the clerk of the appellate court, the case shall then be docketed, except that an appeal from an order of protection issued pursuant to § 19.2-152.10 shall be assigned a case number within two business days upon receipt of such appeal.

When such case has been docketed, the clerk of such appellate court shall by writing to be served, as provided in §§ 8.01-288, 8.01-293, 8.01-296, and 8.01-325, or by certified mail, with certified delivery receipt requested, notify the appellee, or by regular mail to his attorney, that such an appeal has been docketed in his office, provided that upon affidavit by the appellant or his agent in conformity with § 8.01-316 being filed with the clerk, the clerk shall post such notice at the front door of his courtroom and shall mail a copy thereof to the appellee at his last known address or place of abode or to his attorney, and he shall file a certificate of such posting and mailing with the papers in the case. No such appeal shall be heard unless it appears that the appellee or his attorney has had such notice, or that such certificate has been filed, 10 days before the date fixed for trial, or has in person or by attorney waived such notice.

1956, c. 555; 1958, c. 211; 1972, c. 585; 1984, c. 108; 1988, c. 698; 2004, c. 366; 2016, c. 612; 2018, cc. 32, 134; 2019, c. 718.

§ 16.1-113. How appeals tried.

Every such appeal shall be tried by the court in a summary way, or, if the amount in controversy exceeds fifty dollars, by a jury if either party requires it. All legal evidence produced by either party shall be heard, whether or not it was produced before the court from which the appeal is taken. If judgment is recovered by the appellee, execution shall issue against the principal and his surety, jointly or separately, for the amount of the judgment, including interests and costs, with damages on the aggregate at the rate of ten percent annually, from the date of that judgment until payment, and for the costs of the appeal; and the execution shall be endorsed "No security is to be taken." If the decision is reversed, the party substantially prevailing shall recover his costs and the order or judgment shall be made or given as ought to have been made or given by the judge of the court from which the appeal was taken. When the appeal is from an order or judgment under §§ 16.1-119 through 16.1-121, the court shall enter such judgment respecting the property, the expense of keeping it, and any injury done to it, as may be equitable among the parties.

1956, c. 555; 1980, c. 129; 1984, c. 38; 1988, c. 337.

§ 16.1-114. Repealed.

Repealed by Acts 1983, c. 499.

§ 16.1-114.1. Principles applicable in trial of appeals; defective or irregular warrants or motions.

Actions or proceedings appealed from district courts shall be tried according to the principles of law and equity, and when the same conflict the principles of equity shall prevail. No warrant, motion or other pleading shall be dismissed by reason of a mere defect, irregularity or omission in the proceedings in the district court, or in the form of any such pleading, when the same may be corrected by a proper order of the court of record. In any such case the court of record shall retain the same, with full power to direct all necessary amendments, to enter orders and direct proceedings to correct such defects, irregularities and omissions, to promote substantial justice to all parties, and to bring about a trial of the merits of the controversy. In any case where an appeal is taken by a defendant the circuit court may direct amendments to increase the amount of the claim above the jurisdictional amount set forth in § 16.1-77. This section shall be liberally construed, to the end that justice is not delayed or denied by reason of errors in the pleadings or in the form of the proceedings.

1986, c. 45; 1997, c. 753; 2007, c. 869.

§ 16.1-115. Repealed.

Repealed by Acts 1986, c. 45.

§ 16.1-116. Issuance of executions and abstracts and proceedings by interrogatories after papers returned to circuit court.

When a judgment has been rendered in a civil action in a general district court and the papers in the action have been returned to the clerk of the circuit court for filing and preserving, executions upon and abstracts of the judgment may be issued by the clerk of such circuit court within the periods permitted under § 8.01-251, provided that such judgment has been duly entered in the judgment lien docket book of such court. However, for a period of two years from the date of any such judgment, the judge or clerk of the general district court may also issue executions upon and abstracts of the judgment. In addition, proceedings by interrogatories may be had in the circuit court as if the judgment had been rendered by that court.

1956, c. 555; 1962, c. 444; 1983, c. 499.

§ 16.1-117. When papers in civil cases in certain municipal courts may be destroyed.

The clerk of any municipal court in which papers are filed and preserved under § 16.1-69.55 may destroy the files, papers and records connected with any civil case in such court, if:

(1) Such case was dismissed without any adjudication of the merits of the controversy, and the final order entered was one of dismissal and six months have elapsed from the date of such dismissal; or

(2) Judgment was entered in such case but the right to issue an execution or bring a scire facias or an action on such judgment is barred by § 8.01-251; and

(3) The destruction of such papers is authorized and directed by an order of the judge of the court in which they are filed and preserved, which order may refer to such papers by any one or more of the above classifications, or to any group or kind of cases embraced therein, without express reference to any particular case.

1956, c. 555.

§ 16.1-118. When papers in civil cases returned to courts of record may be destroyed.

The clerk of any court of record to whose office papers in civil cases in the district court have been returned for indexing and preserving under § 16.1-69.55 may destroy the files, papers and records connected with any such civil case, if:

(1) Such case was dismissed without any adjudication of the merits of the controversy, and the final order entered was one of dismissal and one year has elapsed from the date of such dismissal; or

(2) Judgment was entered in such case but twenty years have elapsed since entry of such judgment and a motion to extend the period for enforcement of judgment has not been brought prior to the expiration of twenty years from the date such judgment was entered; or

(3) No service of the warrant or motion or other process or summons was had on any defendant and one year has elapsed from the date of such process or summons; and

(4) The destruction of such papers is authorized and directed by an order of the judge of the court in which they are preserved, which order may refer to such papers by any one or more of the above classifications, or to any group or kind of cases embraced therein, without express reference to any particular case.

1956, c. 555; 1962, c. 444; 1972, c. 491; 1977, c. 169; 1982, c. 153.

§ 16.1-118.1. Destruction of papers in civil cases in certain district courts.

In Henrico County or Montgomery County, the clerk of any district court in which papers are filed and preserved under § 16.1-69.55 may destroy the files, papers and records connected with any civil case in such court, if:

(1) Such case was dismissed without any adjudication of the merits of the controversy, and the final order entered was one of dismissal and one year has elapsed from the date of such dismissal; or

(2) Judgment was entered in such case but the right to issue an execution or bring a motion to extend the period for enforcing a judgment or an action on such judgment is barred by § 8.01-251; or

(3) No service of the warrant or motion or other process or summons was had on any defendant and one year has elapsed from the date of such process or summons; and

(4) The destruction of such papers is authorized and directed by an order of the judge of the court in which they are preserved, which order may refer to such papers by any one or more of the above classifications, or to any group or kind of cases embraced therein, without express reference to any particular case; and

(5) The audit has been made for the period to which the files, papers and records are applicable.

1966, c. 404; 1973, c. 143; 1977, c. 169; 1982, c. 153; 2007, c. 813.

Article 4. Trying Title to Property Levied on under Distress or Execution.

§ 16.1-119. Proceedings to try title to property levied on under distress or execution.

When an execution on a judgment of a general district court, or a warrant of distress, is levied on property, or when a lien is acquired on money or other personal estate by virtue of § 8.01-501 and some person other than the party against whom the process issued claims such property, money or other personal estate, or some part thereof, either the claimant, the officer having such process, or the party who had the same issued may apply to the general district court of the county or city wherein the property, money or other personal estate may be to try the claim of the party so claiming the same or some part thereof, provided that the property, money or other personal estate does not exceed the maximum jurisdictional limit of the court as provided in § 16.1-77 (1).

1956, c. 555; 1978, c. 42; 1986, c. 27.

§ 16.1-120. Summons in such case.

If the party making such application shall make and file an affidavit that to the best of his belief such property, money or other personal estate so claimed by such third party is not of greater value than the maximum jurisdictional limits of the court as provided by § 16.1-77 (1), the judge or clerk of the court shall issue a summons directed to the sheriff of his county or city, as the case may be, requiring him to summon both the creditor and the debtor to appear and show cause why such property, money or other personal estate, or any part thereof, should not be discharged from levy or lien of such execution or distress warrant. A copy of such summons shall be served upon the claimant of the property, money or other personal estate, unless the summons is sued out at his instance. The summons shall be made returnable not less than five days after date of its issuance, and if an earlier day shall have been fixed for the sale of the property, or for the return of any process subjecting such money or other personal estate to a final disposition, the judge shall make and endorse on the summons an order requiring the postponement of the sale, or the hearing to be had on such process, until after the return day of the summons.

1956, c. 555; 1978, c. 42; 1983, c. 616.

§ 16.1-121. Order after hearing.

After hearing the parties or such of them as may attend after being summoned, and such witnesses as may be introduced by either party, the judge shall order the officer, or the possessor of any money or other personal estate, to deliver the same to the claimant, if he be of opinion that the same belongs to the claimant; but if he be of opinion that the property, money or other personal estate, or any part thereof, belongs to the person against whom the execution or warrant of distress issued, he shall order the officer who levied on the same to sell the property so liable, to satisfy the execution or warrant of distress; or when there is money or other personal estate in the possession of a bailee or garnishee, he shall order the bailee or garnishee, as the case may be, to make delivery to the execution creditor of all such money or other personal estate so found to belong to the execution debtor, or so much thereof as may be necessary to satisfy the execution; and he may give such judgment respecting the property, the expense of keeping it, any injury done by it, and for the costs, as may be just and equitable among the parties.

1956, c. 555.

§ 16.1-122. Appeal.

If the property or money claimed in any such proceeding is more than $50 in value, an appeal of right may be had to the judgment or order of the court as provided in § 16.1-106.

1956, c. 555; 1978, c. 42; 1986, c. 25; 1998, cc. 482, 495; 2002, c. 645; 2007, c. 869.

Article 5. Small Claims Court.

§ 16.1-122.1. Small claims court; designated.

On or before July 1, 1999, each general district court shall establish, using existing facilities, a small claims division to be designated a small claims court.

Such courts shall not have jurisdiction over suits against the Commonwealth under the Virginia Tort Claims Act (§ 8.01-195.1 et seq.) or suits against any officer or employee of the Commonwealth for claims arising out of the performance of their official duties or responsibilities.

1988, c. 799; 1989, c. 451; 1990, c. 564; 1994, c. 576; 1995, c. 589; 1998, cc. 656, 779.

§ 16.1-122.2. Jurisdiction.

Notwithstanding any provision of law to the contrary, the small claims court shall have jurisdiction, concurrent with that of the general district court, over the civil action specified in § 16.1-77 (1) when the amount claimed does not exceed $5,000, exclusive of interest.

1988, c. 799; 2002, c. 704; 2006, c. 141.

§ 16.1-122.3. Actions; how commenced; notice; continuances; pleadings.

A. Actions in the small claims court shall be commenced by the filing of a small claims civil warrant by a plaintiff.

B. At the time of filing a small claims civil warrant, the plaintiff shall pay to the clerk a required fee, which will be taxed as costs in the case. The plaintiff may be afforded the opportunity to receive preprinted information promulgated by the Committee on District Courts explaining the small claims court, including but not limited to information on case preparation, courtroom procedures, methods of collection, removal rights and appeals. The plaintiff shall select a time for the hearing which shall be held at least five days after service of the warrant. Such time shall be subject to concurrence by the clerk's office. The chief judge may limit the number of cases any one person may set for trial on any one date.

C. Upon the filing of the small claims civil warrant in small claims court, the court shall cause notice of process to be served upon the defendant. Notice of process shall consist of a copy of the warrant and shall be served by the method used in general district court. If applicable, the defendant shall be served with a copy of the preprinted information identified in subsection B of this section attached to the copy of the civil warrant.

D. All forms required by this article shall be prescribed by the Supreme Court of Virginia.

E. The trial shall be conducted on the first return date. However, by consent of all parties or upon order of the court, the time for trial may be changed from the time set for the first return. A continuance shall be granted to either the plaintiff or defendant only upon good cause shown.

F. There shall be no pleadings in small claims court actions other than the warrant and answer, grounds of defense and counterclaims not to exceed $5,000.

1988, c. 799; 1990, c. 564; 2002, c. 704; 2006, c. 141.

§ 16.1-122.4. Representation and removal; rights of parties.

A. All parties shall be represented by themselves in actions before the small claims court except as follows:

1. A corporate or partnership plaintiff or defendant may be represented by an owner, a general partner, an officer or an employee of that corporation or partnership who shall have all the rights and privileges given an individual to represent, plead and try a case without an attorney. An attorney may serve in this capacity if he is appearing pro se, but he may not serve in a representative capacity.

2. A plaintiff or defendant who, in the judge's opinion, is unable to understand or participate on his own behalf in the hearing may be represented by a friend or relative if the representative is familiar with the facts of the case and is not an attorney.

B. A defendant shall have the right to remove the case to the general district court at any point preceding the handing down of the decision by the judge and may be represented by an attorney for that purpose.

1988, c. 799; 1997, c. 243; 2001, c. 74.

§ 16.1-122.5. Informal hearings; rules of evidence suspended.

In trials before the small claims court, witnesses shall be sworn. The general district court judge shall conduct the trial in an informal manner so as to do substantial justice between the parties. The judge shall have the discretion to admit all evidence which may be of probative value although not in accordance with formal rules of practice, procedure, pleading or evidence, except that privileged communications shall not be admissible. The object of such trials shall be to determine the rights of the litigants on the merits and to dispense expeditious justice between the parties.

1988, c. 799.

§ 16.1-122.6. Judgment and collection.

The small claims court shall follow the procedures of the general district court in judgment and collection.

1988, c. 799.

§ 16.1-122.7. Appeals.

Appeals from the small claims court shall be as in other cases from the general district court.

1988, c. 799.

The chapters of the acts of assembly referenced in the historical citation at the end of these sections may not constitute a comprehensive list of such chapters and may exclude chapters whose provisions have expired.

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