The circuit court is the trial court of general jurisdiction in Virginia and has authority to try both civil and criminal cases. Civil cases involve essentially private disputes between two or more parties; criminal cases are proceedings by the State against individuals accused of a crime.
In civil cases, the circuit court has concurrent jurisdiction with the general district court over claims from $4,500 to $15,000 and exclusive original jurisdiction over almost all claims exceeding $15,000. The circuit court also has jurisdiction over all equity matters, including divorce cases, disputes concerning wills and estates, and controversies involving property.
In criminal cases, the circuit court has jurisdiction over the trial of all felonies (offenses that may be punished by commitment to the Department of Corrections) and of those misdemeanors (offenses carrying a penalty of not more than twelve months in jail) originally charged in circuit court. The circuit court also has jurisdiction over juveniles aged fifteen and older who are charged with felonies and whose cases have been certified by the judge of a juvenile and domestic relations district court for trial in a circuit court.
The circuit court has appellate jurisdiction over all appeals from general district court in civil and criminal cases and from juvenile and domestic relations district court in matters originating in that court.
Jury trials are heard only in circuit court, and only the circuit court has the authority to impanel regular and special grand juries.
The Virginia circuit court system is composed of thirty-one judicial circuits with one hundred twenty-two separate circuit courts. King William County lies in Virginia’s 9th circuit which is presided over by the Honorable Thomas B. Hoover. Circuit court judges are elected by the General Assembly for an eight-year term and are required to reside in the circuit they serve.
For further information about Virginia’s judicial system follow this link to the website for the state’s court system.
In King William County, Circuit Court cases are heard in the historic courthouse, at 227 Courthouse Lane, in the County’s administrative complex. Court terms begin the first Monday of February, April, June, August, October and December, with Grand Juries meeting at 9 a.m. the first day of each term. If a Term Day falls on a legal holiday, the term will commence on the following day. The criminal docket is held at 9 a.m and the civil docket is held at 11 a.m.
King William Circuit Court
351 Courthouse Lane, Suite 130
King William, VA 23086
Phone: (804) 769-4936
Fax: (804) 769-4991
The Circuit Court Clerk’s Office is located in the new Courts & Public Safety Building at 351 Courthouse Lane.
Office Hours: Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Clerk of Circuit Court
The Clerk of the Circuit Court is a constitutional official who is elected to an eight-year term by the citizens of King William. The clerk is the administrative officer for the court and the custodian of the court records. The clerk has the authority to probate wills, grant administration of estates, and appoint guardians.
The clerk is also responsible for recording all deeds, deeds of trust, assignments and plats. Marriage licenses are issued by the clerk of circuit court. The records of these items date to 1885 in King William County.
Patricia M. Norman
Brenda V. Taylor