The Clerk participates in the administration of public safety as a consultant to prosecutors and law enforcement officials. The Clerk is the official record-keeper of criminal felony cases, misdemeanor appeal cases and criminal indictments.
The Clerk provides direct administrative support to the judges in court proceedings. The Clerk prepares many legal documents for the court such as criminal court orders that determines the outcome of a criminal court case, summonses and legal service of process, authorizations for arrest and other judicial directives.
The Clerk manages jury operations and is responsible for issuing juror questionnaires to establish a qualified jury pool, issuing jury summons for jury trials, preparing jury lists, providing a comprehensive juror orientation and coordinating the needs of citizens who report for jury duty.
The Clerk is responsible for collecting the taxes and fees associated with the legal recordation of deeds. Additionally, the Clerk is responsible for retaining all deeds and land records recorded since the inception of the city/county and for ensuring adequate public access to these public records.
5Probate and Fiduciary Requirements
The Clerk acts as a probate judge when a last will and testament is presented to the Clerk for legal probate of an estate. The Clerk ensures the authentication of the will, conducts a legal hearing with witnesses, makes a legal appointment of an executor or administrator of a decedent’s estate and prepares legal documents and orders related to the handling of the estate.
6Custodian of Court Cases
The Clerk is the official recordkeeper of all circuit court cases which include contract disputes, claims of negligence, criminal cases, divorce proceedings, land disputes, adoptions, requests for name changes, court judgments, and many other types of court cases. Under Virginia law, the Clerk is responsible for providing public access to most court files.
The Clerk is responsible for issuing marriage licenses in Virginia, processing notary public commissions, and processing business name applications (commonly referred to as fictitious name applications) for citizens in a county/city. The Clerk issues witness subpoenas in court cases, issues concealed handgun permits, and administers the oath of public office to elected officials, sheriff deputies and to citizens who are appointed to local or state commission posts.
8Official Record Keeper of Election Ballots
The Clerk takes custody of all election ballots after the local election officials have certified the election results. When localities request that bond issues and referendums, such as school bond construction issues, be placed on election ballots, the Clerk issues legal documents for legal publication.