Written by attorney Rixon Charles Rafter III

Unlawful Detainer in Virginia--The Steps and Basic Court Processes

A landlord must follow these steps in an unlawful detainer action.

• File a lawsuit in court. The lawsuit may be filed either in General District Court or in Circuit Court. Almost all evictions are filed in General District Court. • Serve (legally deliver) the tenant a copy of the court papers in a manner allowed by law (personal, substituted, or posted) • Attend court at the date and time of the hearing. • Get a judgment of possession from the court. • Get a Writ of Possession from the court. This is the paper that allows the Sheriff to evict the tenant.

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