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Criminal Appeals Section

The Criminal Appeals Section handles an array of post-conviction litigation filed by state prisoners challenging their state convictions, including criminal appeals, state and federal habeas corpus proceedings, petitions for writs of actual innocence, and other extraordinary writs.  The Section’s Capital Unit defends against appellate and collateral challenges to all cases in which a death sentence was imposed.  In addition, Section attorneys review wiretap applications and provide informal advice and assistance to prosecutors statewide.  Finally, the Section represents the Capitol Police, state magistrates, and the Commonwealth’s Attorneys’ Services Council.  On an annual basis, the Section handles about 1500 cases.

 

Federal Court links

State Court links

Supreme Court of the United States

United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit

US District Court — Western District of Virginia

US District Court — Eastern District of Virginia

Supreme Court of Virginia

Court of Appeals of Virginia

Virginia Department of Corrections

 

Michael T. Judge

Senior Assistant Attorney General/Chief

Criminal Appeals Section

Office of the Attorney General
202 North Ninth Street
Richmond, VA 23219
 

 

 

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Child Support Enforcement Section

 

The Child Support Enforcement Section represents the Division of Child Support Enforcement (DCSE) in the Department of Social Services. The Section consists of a section chief, three managing regional attorneys, a bankruptcy lawyer expert, and 42 trial attorneys located across the state.

Attorneys in this section, assisted by a small percentage of work handled by outside counsel, handled many child support cases efficiently in 2014—appearing at 130,923 child support hearings. After adjusting for work handled by outside counsel, field attorneys, on average, appeared in close to 250 hearings per month. The majority of these hearings were heard on 4,792 dockets in juvenile and domestic relations district courts dedicated to child support cases. The average juvenile court docket contained over 30 child support cases. On average, each in-house field attorney appeared in court more than twice each week. The attorneys established new child support orders totaling in excess of $1.4 million and enforced existing orders by obtaining lump sum payments of nearly $13 million and coercive sentences totaling 549,871 days in jail.

 

Beth J. Edwards

Senior Assistant Attorney General/Chief

Child Support Enforcement Section

Office of the Attorney General
202 North Ninth Street
Richmond, VA 23219


 
 

 

 

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Division of Debt Collection

About

The Division of Debt Collection (DDC) is created pursuant to § 2.2-518 of the Code of Virginia to provide all legal services and advice related to the collection of funds owed to the Commonwealth. The Virginia Debt Collection Act, §§ 2.2-4800 et seq. of the Code, further defines DDC's role as counsel to agencies for legal services and advice related to the collection of accounts receivable. The official mission of the DDC is to provide aggressively and professionally all appropriate and cost effective debt collection services on behalf of each State agency.

 

Christy E. Harris-Lipford

Senior Assistant Attorney General/Chief

Division of Debt Collection

Office of the Attorney General

202 North Ninth Street

Richmond, VA 23219

 

 

 

 

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Trial Section

About

The Trial Section defends the interests of the Commonwealth and all of its agencies, institutions, and officials in civil law suits. The Section is divided into three Units: The Employment Unit, the Workers' Compensation Unit, and the General Civil Litigation Unit.

Employment Unit

The Employment Unit defends traditional employment discrimination actions brought by current or former state employees. The Section’s employment lawyers also consult with agency counsel on personnel/employment matters to avoid litigation. They assist state agencies at hearings under the State Grievance Procedure, and provide training to human resource personnel from state agencies on recent case decisions in employment law, including cases interpreting the Fair Labor Standards Act. They also provide training on new standards for retaliation and sexual harassment under Title VII, and the Virginia Human Rights Act. In addition, the Employment Unit provides legal advice to the Department of Human Resource Management, Department of Labor and Industry, Virginia Indigent Defense Commission, Advisory Council for the Commonwealth of Virginia Campaign, and the Office of Commonwealth Preparedness.

Workers' Compensation Unit

The Workers’ Compensation Unit defends Workers’ Compensation cases involving State agencies. The Workers’ Compensation Unit receives approximately 350 new cases per year and is funded through a Memorandum of Understanding with the Department of Human Resources Management.

General Civil Litigation Unit

The General Civil Unit defends the Commonwealth and its agencies and employees in civil law suits. These suits include tort and civil rights claims, as well as constitutional challenges to state statutes. They also include a substantial number of frivolous pro se actions in which the courts expect the Office to provide them the appropriate grounds to allow a proper disposition. The General Civil Unit also monitors cases sent to outside counsel.

The General Civil Unit also provides legal advice to state courts and judges, the Virginia State Bar, Board of Bar Examiners, Virginia Birth-Related Neurological Injury Compensation Program’s Board ("BIF"), and the Commonwealth Health Research Board. The Virginia State Bar refers unauthorized practice of law matters to the Unit for civil prosecution, and the Unit represents the State Bar in attorney disciplinary appeals before the Supreme Court of Virginia. Unit attorneys are also asked to participate in the new judges orientation program.

 

Rita P. Davis

Senior Assistant Attorney General/Chief

Trial Section

Office of the Attorney General

202 North Ninth Street

Richmond, VA 23219