Practice in the Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Court (Online Seminar)

MCLE Credits: 2.0
Ethics Credits Included: 0.0

MCLE Credit: 2.0
Live-Interactive Credit: 0.0
GAL for Children CE Credit: 2.0 (GAL Information)
VIDC Re-Certification Credit: 2.0 (VIDC Information)
VIDC Juvenile Re-Certification Credit: 2.0 (VIDC Information)
Price: $149 (Includes a downloadable audio version.)
Viewable Through: 09/30/2020


A pre-recorded streaming video replay from the September 2017 webcast, Practice in the Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Court.

Note: Your GAL certificate may be found at the front of your written materials.

Why Attend?

Get a thorough grounding in the practice before the J&DR District Court, including its specialized rules, procedures, and advocacy.

  • Learn the legal framework of the J&DR District Court, and how it differs from the Circuit Court
  • Understand the opportunities, limitations, and challenges of this forum
  • Get tips and learn best practices from judges and an experienced lawyer

A lawyer probably has no role more challenging than that of an attorney in the Juvenile and Domestic Relations (J&DR) District Court. Whether appearing as a guardian ad litem in an abuse and neglect proceeding, defending a juvenile charged with delinquency, or representing the Commonwealth in a delinquency matter, the attorney faces enormous challenges. Counsel in juvenile proceedings must be prepared to handle the complex problems of children and families increasingly beset by poverty, violence, and drug abuse. Counsel must be able to understand the various roles an attorney must play in different types of juvenile proceedings. The role of the guardian ad litem in an abuse and neglect proceeding is very different from the role of an attorney representing a child charged with a criminal offense. In short, nowhere is an attorney invited to use all of his or her skills as completely as when dealing with the lives of children and families.

Because the District Court has limited punishment powers, many attorneys believe they can just “wing it” through the process. That is a mistake! Knowledge of the specialized rules and procedures of the District Court is critical. The nature of the advocacy, too, often differs greatly from that of Circuit Court: the lawyer who doesn’t appreciate the differences may succeed, but won’t necessarily thrive.

This seminar is designed to provide you with a thorough grounding in practice before the J&DR District Court. Our faculty of two highly regarded judges, and a lawyer with extensive experience in that forum, will share their insights from both sides of the bench. If you haven’t appeared before the J&DR District Court before, you’ll be ready to do so when we’re done; if you’re already a veteran, you’ll get better. Join us for an informative two hours.


  • Introduction to the Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Court
    • Age and subject-matter jurisdiction
    • The philosophy of the juvenile justice system
  • Diversion Strategies in the Juvenile Courts
    • In delinquency cases
    • For domestic relations cases
  • Pretrial Procedures and Considerations in the J&DR Courts
    • Notice requirements
    • Discovery in civil, criminal, and delinquency cases
    • Right to counsel and the role of a guardian ad litem
  • Best Practices
    • Effective motions  practice
    • Trials in the J&DR Courts
    • Effective preparation and presentation of dispositional alternatives

This Virginia CLE® seminar is part of a recurring series on the District Court:

  • Civil Practice in the General District Court (2015—available online; a new version will be offered in 2018)
  • Criminal Practice in the General District Court (2016—available online)




Hon. Monica Dawn Davis Cox, 27th Judicial District / Hillsville
Hon. ThomasĀ  P. Sotelo, Fairfax County J&DR District Court / Fairfax
William B. Reichhardt, Law Offices of William B. Reichhardt & Associates / Fairfax

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