VA Circuit Courts

Virginia’s Circuit Courts are the only trial court of general jurisdiction in the Commonwealth. Circuit courts handle the following types of cases:

 Civil Actions

  • Where the monetary claim is over $4,500 but not exceeding $25,000, the circuit court has concurrent jurisdiction with the general district court
  • Where monetary claims exceed $25,000, the circuit has exclusive original jurisdiction
  • Attachments
  • The validity of a county or municipal ordinance or corporate by-law
  • Divorce
  • Wills, trusts, and estate matters
  • Property disputes
  • Adoption

Criminal Cases

  • All felonies, after the preliminary hearing and/or indictment by a grand jury
  • Misdemeanor offenses that are appealed from the district court or originated from a grand jury indictment
  • Transfer or certification of felony offenses committed by juveniles


  • Appeals from the general district or juvenile & domestic district courts; these appeals are heard de novo
  • Appeals from administrative agencies

Circuit Courts also handle any case for which jurisdiction is not specified in the Code of Virginia.

Return to the Virginia Court System Page
Learn about Virginia’s District Courts