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Filing a Protective Order
Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Court
Filing a Protective Order

Call 911 if you are in immediate danger

The J&DR District Court can issue preliminary family abuse protective orders, if you feel your life and/or safety is in danger from a family or household member. 

Information Needed When Filing

  • A picture ID
    • driver’s license or
    • work identification tag
    • military ID
  • The name and address (not a P.O. box) of the person from whom you are seeking protection
  • A full description of the event that led you to seek a protective order
  • You should bring any adult witness to the abusive event
  • You are discouraged from bringing young children with you to court
    • If you must bring children, please bring an adult to supervise the child while you are in the courtroom
  • Avoid bringing anyone who may cause a disturbance during your visit to the Courthouse
  • If you used the I-CAN system, bring the Affidavit with you

NOTE: You will need this same information for the full hearing, that will be scheduled if a Preliminary Protective Order is issued. You will be asked to testify at the full hearing about the event that made you want to seek protection.

  • Bring as much identifying and contact information as possible about the person from whom you are seeking protection. Please try to provide the following
    • name, nicknames, aliases;
    • date of birth;
    • home, work, cell phone and pager numbers;
    • addresses for home, work, friends, relatives, and places frequented;
    • age, height, weight, eye color, hair color, distinguishing marks;
    • social security number
    • tendencies toward violence
    • ownership or possession of weapons, especially firearms
    • existence of a concealed weapons permit
    • a history or presence of drug or alcohol abuse, or mental illness and
    • a recent photograph of that person
    • A copy of an Emergency Protective Order if one was issued
    • Any photographs, police reports, or medical records related to the event that led to the petition for a Family Abuse Protective Order
    • Copies of any other existing court orders involving BOTH you and the other person
    • If possible, birth certificates and social security numbers for children for whom you may be seeking protection

NOTE: This information is essential because the Sheriff must be able to find this person for the Protective Order to take effect. 

Types of Protective Orders

Family Abuse

The Code of Virginia defines family abuse as any act involving violence, force, or threat that results in bodily injury or places one in reasonable apprehension of death, sexual assault, or bodily injury and that is committed by a person against such person's family or household member.

Such acts include, but not limited to, any forceful detention, stalking, criminal sexual assault in violation of Article 7 (§ 18.2-61 et seq.) of Chapter 4 of Title 18.2, or any criminal offense that results in bodily injury or places one in reasonable apprehension of death, sexual assault, or bodily injury.

Family/Household Member

The Code of Virginia defines family or household member as

  • the person's spouse, whether or not he or she resides in the same home with the person
  • the person's former spouse, whether or not he or she resides in the same home with the person
  • the person's parents, stepparents, children, stepchildren, brothers, sisters, half-brothers, half-sisters, grandparents and grandchildren, regardless of whether such persons reside in the same home with the person
  • the person's mother-in-law, father-in-law, sons-in-law, daughters-in-law, brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law who reside in the same home with the person
  • any individual who has a child in common with the person, whether or not the person and that individual have been married or have resided together at any time
  • any individual who cohabits or who, within the previous 12 months, cohabited with the person, and any children of either of them then residing in the same home with the person

Petitioning the Court for Family Abuse

For a family abuse protective order, you must come to court to file

  1. Report to the Court Service Unit, Intake Division, at the J&DR Courthouse, to complete your petition(s). 
    1. You may fill out forms online through Virginia’s I-CAN system prior to reporting to Intake.
  2. The Court Service Unit accepts walk-in appointments at the following dates/times:

Monday-Friday
8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. 

J&DR Courthouse/Court Service Unit (1st Floor)
7000 Lucy Corr Blvd.
Chesterfield, VA  23832

  1. Report to the Clerk’s Office to file your petition(s).
  2. The Court hears all protective orders at 2 p.m. in Duty Courtroom on the 2nd floor of the courthouse. 
    • While the court does have an internal cut-off time for processing paperwork, decisions to hear protective order requests made after 2 p.m. (but before 4:30 PM) will be decided on a case-by-case basis.  
     
  3. If you need assistance, you may speak to a Victim/Witness or Domestic Violence advocate prior to court.  Court staff can help direct you to the appropriate office. 

Non-Family Abuse Protective Orders

Information for parties seeking protective orders against adults OR minors who are not related to them.

From the Code of Virginia, § 19.2-152.9:  Upon the filing of a petition alleging that

  • the petitioner is or has been, within a reasonable period of time, subjected to an act of violence, force, or threat, or
  • a petition or warrant has been issued for the arrest of the alleged perpetrator for any criminal offense resulting from the commission of an act of violence, force, or threat, the court may issue a preliminary protective order against the alleged perpetrator in order to protect the health and safety of the petitioner or any family or household member of the petitioner. 

NOTE:

  • Minors cannot petition the Court directly, but must do so through the assistance of an adult.
    • If you are a minor who wishes to file a protective order, please speak to an adult you trust to initiate this process. 
     
  • Adults may petition the Court to issue orders protecting them from minors. 
  • If the party you seek protection from is a minor (under age 18), you must come to the J&DR District Court. 
  • If the party is an adult (18 or older), or not a family member, you must go to the General District Court .

Petitioning the Court for Non-family Abuse

For a non-family abuse protective order, you must come to court to file.

  1. Report to the Court Service Unit, Intake Division, at the J&DR Courthouse, to complete your petition(s). 
    1. You may fill out forms online through Virginia’s I-CAN system prior to reporting to Intake.
  2. The Court Service Unit accepts walk-in appointments at the following dates/times:

Monday-Friday 
8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.  

J&DR Courthouse/Court Service Unit (1st Floor)
7000 Lucy Corr Blvd.
Chesterfield, VA  23832

  1. Report to the Clerk’s Office to file your petition(s).
  2. The Court hears all protective orders at 2:00 p.m. in Duty Courtroom on the 2nd floor of the courthouse. 
    • While the court does have an internal cut-off time for processing paperwork, decisions to hear protective order requests made after 2 p.m. (but before 4:30 PM) will be decided on a case-by-case basis.
  3. If you need assistance, you may speak to a Victim/Witness prior to court.  Court staff can help direct you to the appropriate office. 

Magistrate’s Office

Please contact the Magistrate if the court is not open (before or after business hours).  The Magistrate has the authority to issue emergency protective orders 24/7.     

12th District Chief Magistrate
Daniel Holser

Chesterfield Office
6900 Mimms Loop Drive
Chesterfield, VA 23832

Phone: 804-748-1410
Fax: 804-717-6260

For additional information about family abuse protective orders in Chesterfield or Domestic Violence Resources 

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