JDRDC Frequently Asked Questions


 

If you or your child is in immediate danger, please call 911. 

If you are witness to a life and death situation, please call 911.  

We all need help taking care of our children. If you're concerned about a child's well-being ... or want to report or discuss a possible abuse or neglect situation ... or want advice, counseling, resources or help, please call:

Fairfax County's
Child Protective Services Hotline
703-324-7400
TTY 703-222-9452
Your call is confidential

Frequently Asked Questions - From the Virginia Courts


Q: What must I do if I can't appear in court?

If you are noticed to appear in court and you are unable to appear, you need to file a Motion for a Continuance. That can be done by going to the Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Court Pre-Court Window on the third floor of the Fairfax County Courthouse; the clerks will explain the process and help you fill out the appropriate forms. Only a judge can grant a continuance in a case. If you have an emergency the day of your court appearance and can not appear, you need to call 703-246-3367, immediately and let the court know. Emergencies must be very serious in order for a judge to excuse your absence that day.


Q: My child’s behavior is out of control (for example child refuses to go to school, or runs away, or is physically abusive). How do I get help?

 

You can make an appointment with the Juvenile Intake Unit. Their phone number is 703-246-2495 from 7am until midnight. From midnight to 7am, please call 703-246-2844, and ask for the Intake Officer. At the appointment, an Intake Officer will discuss the situation and outline what options are available to you.


Q: My spouse abuses me and or my children. Where can I get help?

 

You must call the Domestic Relations Unit of the Juvenile Court. Their phone number is 703-246-3040. You will be given an appointment. Because there is paper work which must be completed prior to the appointment, we ask that you be prepared to arrive ½ hour before your scheduled appointment time.


Q: How do I file for custody of or visitation with a child?

  1. Call 703-246-3040 to make an appointment with Domestic Relations Services  Let the person on the phone know if: 

    • you will need an interpreter
    • there is a prior order from a court other than Fairfax J&DR Court
    • child has not been residing with you in Fairfax County for the past six months
    • you do not know the address of the child’s parent or legal guardian

  2. Arrive thirty minutes prior to your appointment so your paperwork may be processed (except for 8 a.m. appointments).

  3. Bring the following information with you to your appointment:
     
    • Completed Intake Sheet and Child’s Address History Worksheet (or the information necessary to complete the documents).  These documents are also available at Domestic Relations Services.
    • Child’s birth certificate, a copy of the death certificate, passport, social security card, DMV identification card or driver’s license, or other official form of identification.  These are useful, but not required at the appointment.
    • $25.00 check or money order payable to: “Commonwealth of Virginia” for the filing fee. 
      • VISA/Master Card and cash are accepted, but only for appointments that finish before 4:00 p.m. at the courthouse.
      • If you can’t afford the $25.00 filing fee, ask the intake officer about a fee waiver. The waiver will be reviewed by a judge.
    • Copies of prior orders including but not limited to:
      • divorce decree, property settlement, protective order, and name change.
      • If you are seeking to register an out-of-state order you will need to bring certified copies of the court order(s). 
    • It is very important that you provide a current address for the other parent. If they can not be properly served with the required paperwork, there is a chance your case could be dismissed. If you can’t provide a current address, you may be required to pay a fee to have notification of the hearing published in the newspaper.

  4. The court’s Central Intake Unit assists with limited types of custody and visitation cases.   Please contact Central Intake at 703-246-2495 to have your case reviewed if:
    • Department of Family Services is court ordered to supervise the child and/or
    • You are a third party (not the mother or father) seeking to enroll the child in school, the child is residing with you in Fairfax County, and all parties are in agreement

  5. To enroll a homeless child in school, please contact the Fairfax County Public SchoolsHomeless Liaison (www.fcps.edu/dss/ips/homelessinfo)

  


Q: How do I file to get child support court ordered?

  1. Call 703-246-3040 to make an appointment with the Domestic Relations Unit.  Let the person on the phone know if:
    • you will need an interpreter
    • there is a prior child support order from another court

  2. Complete the Intake Sheet and bring it with you to your appointment.  A copy of this form is also available in the Domestic Relations Unit.

  3. During your appointment please advise the intake officer if you have a case with the Department of Child Support Enforcement. (www.dss.virginia.gov/family/dcse/index.cgi)

  4. Petitions and complaints will be drafted and signed at the time of the initial intake interview.  These documents are then sent to the 3rd floor, Pre-Court Window, and your case will be assigned a court date.

  5. There is a fee for filing a spousal support petition, payable by check or money order to “Commonwealth of Virginia.”  
    • VISA/Master Card and cash are accepted, but only for appointments that finish before 4:00 p.m. at the courthouse.

  6. There is no charge for filing a child support petition.

  


Q: I am not receiving my court ordered child support. What do I do?

 

If you receive your court ordered child support directly, call the Domestic Relations Unit of the Juvenile Court. Their phone number is 703-246-3040. You will be given an appointment. Because there is paper work which must be completed prior to the appointment, we ask that you be prepared to arrive ½ hour before your scheduled appointment time.

 

If you receive your court ordered child support through the Department of Child Support Enforcement (DCSE), please call 1-800-468-8894 or visit the DCSE office at 3953 Pender Drive, Fairfax, Virginia 22030.

 


Q: How can I obtain a copy of my court order?

 

Court orders can be obtained by coming in person to the Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Court Records Counter on the third floor of the Fairfax County Courthouse. Normal operating hours are Monday to Friday 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. No files will be pulled after 3:45pm. You will need proof of identification that you are a party to the case. Accepted identification includes:

      • Valid U.S. driver's license
      • DMV identification card
      • Passport
      • Military ID.
      • Original birth certificate

Attorneys will need to show a Virginia bar card. You do not need to be a party to a case to receive a copy of an adult criminal warrant, protective order or child support order, but you will still be asked to present identification. Children's information will be redacted (i.e., removed) for non-parties.

      • Files will not be pulled for viewing/inspection/copies 24 hours before or after any court hearings. (No exceptions)
      • No more than 5 cases per day will be pulled for viewing/inspection/copies. If there is a request for more than 5 cases than a request can be filled out and left at Records. The files will be ready within 24 hours.
      • No more than 10 pages will be copied at the time of service. If there are more than 10 pages being requested then a request will be left with Records. The copies can take up to 72 hours to be made and option of pick-up or mailing will be made available.
      • Payment is due at the time of service or when request is made.
      • Fee is $1.00 each for the first two pages and $.50 for each page thereafter.
      • No files will be pulled for inspections/copies after 3:45PM
      • Faxed requests will no longer be accepted.

If you are unable to come in person, you may mail a written request to the address below. We will need the case name or number, what documents you wish copied, the requestor's name, address and phone number and a copy of the requestor's ID.

Our address is:

Court Records
Room 301
4110 Chainbridge Road
Fairfax, VA 22030

Records can be reached at 703-246-2580 between the hours of 8:00am and 4:00pm.



Q: My child has received a summons for Possession of Marijuana and a letter that says he may be considered for 'diversion." What does that mean?

As of July 1, 2011, juveniles who are issued a summons for possession or marijuana will also be issued a Notice for Consideration of Diversion. In order to request consideration for Diversion, the Notice must be filed with the Clerk's Office a minimum of 10 days prior to the court date. The Juvenile Court Services Unit will ascertain the juvenile's eligibility for diversion and the Clerk's Office will notify the family in writing. Juveniles who are not eligible for diversion are required to appear in court on the date listed on the summons. Juveniles who are eligible for diversion are required to contact Elizabeth Jones at the Juvenile Intake Unit, 703.246.2495, for further information.

Diversion is the informal handling of cases by the Court Services Unit. It is only available for first-time offenders who admit guilt of appropriate offenses. The benefit of a diversion is that there is no formal charge and cases are closed within a specified timeframe provided that the juvenile is compliant with diversion. Juveniles who are non-compliant with diversion may be formally charged and required to appear before a judge for trial.

Fairfax County Juvenile Court Services offers two forms of diversion: Diversion Hearing and Monitored Diversion. Cases referred for a Diversion Hearing require that the juvenile and his/her parents/legal guardians appear before a Hearing Officer who will discuss the case and impose a consequence for the offense. Juveniles referred to Monitored Diversion are placed on a period of informal probation supervision and are required to meet regularly with a Diversion Counselor who may impose a consequence for the offense as well as require participation in services that will assist the juvenile's and family's needs.

Juveniles and their parent(s)/guardian(s) referred for diversion of complaints involving alcohol and drugs may be required to participate in a substance abuse assessment and recommended treatment component.

Questions regarding diversion may be directed to the Juvenile Intake Unit at 703.246.2495.

 


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