State Laws

Virginia State Laws


Virginia Law Articles | Virginia Gun Laws | Virginia Divorce | Virginia Bankruptcy Laws | Virginia DUI Laws | Virginia Labor Laws | Virginia Marijuana Laws

In the beginning of the seventeenth century the London Company landed in what they would later call the Colony of Virginia. At this time the land was inhabited by Powhatan Indians, who were later enslaved by the Englishmen. As the colony grew so did the plantations and politics. The land was later divided into what is now Virginia and West Virginia when the state entered the Confederate Army during the Civil War.

Today Virginia houses many important entities that strongly attribute to its economy, including the CIA, the Department of Defense, and other federal agencies. The laws that were created at the time of the Revolutionary War gave way to the current Virginia state laws of today.

Unlike other states Virginia has special laws for how roads are managed, how counties and cities are treated, and governor terms. Other laws include labor laws, divorce laws, bankruptcy laws, gun laws, felony conviction laws, expungement laws, and drunken driving laws.

Bankruptcy
There are currently two kinds of bankruptcy that the federal government offers for personal use: Chapter Thirteen bankruptcy and Chapter Seven bankruptcy. Chapter Thirteen bankruptcy allows individuals to eliminate their debts through personalized payment plans that extend no more than five years. Chapter Seven bankruptcy allows individuals to relinquish their debts through liquidating their personal property.

Certain kinds of property are exempt from liquidation, such as real estate, furniture, books, appliances, and clothing. Those who are eligible for bankruptcy will have their incomes and debts measured to the mean of the rest of Virginia. Whether or not an individual comes above or below the mean, he or she will be granted one of the bankruptcy chapters.

Divorce
Like all other states Virginia has specific divorce laws that are different from all surrounding states. Virginia requires that those filing for divorce first be state residents. All divorce cases are managed by the county circuit courts, so filing to the incorrect county will result in case dismissal.

An individual may file for divorce in his or her county of residency or that of his or her spouse. If the divorce petitioner is not a Virginia state resident, he or she may still file for a Virginia divorce if his or her spouse is a state resident.

Felonies
Each state separates its felony offenses into classes, which may be alphabetical or numerical. Virginia breaks its felony classes into six different sections. A Class 1 Felony is the most severe of punishments and can include the death penalty, life in prison, and fines. Each felony class has different kinds of offenses that can range from homicide to assault to drug trafficking.

Depending on the circumstances of the arrest, the number of prior offenses, and any other offenses, an individual will have a conviction based on severity. Individuals may also have more than one degree of felony offense and prison sentencing. For instance an individual may have two felony convictions and a misdemeanor conviction for a single incident. Imprisonment time can be added together in these circumstances, such as combining a sentence of ten years with a sentence of five years to equal fifteen years of imprisonment.