Documents listed on this page are in Adobe Acrobat Reader format.
Official opinions will be posted as they are issued, generally within 24 to 48 hours. Please check this page at regular intervals to determine whether additional opinions have been issued.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Official opinions represent the Attorney General’s analysis of current law based on his thorough research of existing statutes, the Virginia and United States constitutions, and relevant court decisions. They are not “rulings” and do not create new law, nor do they change existing law. Creating and amending laws is the responsibility of the General Assembly, not the Attorney General.
Official opinions are legal advice, not personal opinions, and do not reflect the Attorney General’s personal views about what the law should be. Such advice is provided to ensure clients/the requesters are in compliance with the law. While the opinions may be given deference by the courts, they are not binding on the courts.
The official opinions issued by the Attorney General are part of the duties of the office (see Code § 2.2-505). A person authorized by statute, such as the governor, a member of the General Assembly, a constitutional officer, or the head of a state agency, can ask the Attorney General for an official opinion on the law. Members of the general public are not authorized to ask for opinions.
Opinions issued before 1996 may be found in the Annual Reports posted on the Annual Reports page. Most of the opinions posted on this page also may be found in a corresponding Annual Report, but the most recent opinions have not been published yet in an Annual Report.
New -- Opinions Search Engine
We are pleased to now offer a free opinions search engine that contains official opinions issued beginning July 1, 1976. The search engine is designed and maintained by Westlaw and is available at the following link: