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Legal Information: Virginia

Restraining Orders

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December 13, 2020

What types of orders are there? How long do they last?

There are two types of substantial risk orders: emergency substantial risk orders and final substantial risk orders.

Emergency substantial risk orders – A judge or a magistrate can issue an emergency substantial risk order if s/he finds that the respondent poses a significant risk of causing personal injury to himself/herself or another person by having or getting a firearm. Emergency substantial risk orders are issued ex parte, which means the respondent does not have notice of the case or appear at the hearing. The emergency order lasts until the hearing for the final order, which must be scheduled within 14 days.1

Final substantial risk orders – A final substantial risk order can be issued after the respondent has received notice and had the opportunity to participate in a hearing. A final substantial risk order can be issued for up to 180 days.2

1 VA Code §§ 19.2-152.13(A), 19.2-152.14(A)
2 VA Code § 19.2-152.14(A), (C)