General District Court


We ask for your patience and cooperation as the court begins to resume providing service to our citizens

Please do not come to the courthouse if within the previous 14 days you have:

  • Traveled internationally
  • Been directed to quarantine, isolate, or self-monitor
  • Been diagnosed with, or have had contact with anyone who has been diagnosed with, Covid-19
  • Experienced a fever, cough, or shortness of breath, OR resided with or been in close contact with any person in the above-mentioned categories

You should contact the Clerk’s Office by telephone for instructions if you are unable to come to the courthouse for any of these reasons. The court currently has a liberal continuance policy in place.

Please arrive at the courthouse early enough to complete the Sheriffs screening process, currently consisting of the above questions and a temperature check, so that you will be in the courtroom at the time the docket is scheduled to begin. Everyone MUST wear a face covering while in the courthouse. In addition, court participants will be permitted to enter the courthouse fifteen (15) minutes prior to scheduled hearings.

To better protect courthouse personnel and participants, only defendants and verified witnesses will be allowed to enter the courthouse for court hearings. Family members and others will be asked to wait outside.

Please check the Arlington County and/or Virginia Case Information websites regularly as policies and procedures may change as we continue to move forward.

The General District Court is comprised of the Judges’ Office and the Clerk’s Office.

See the General District Court’s homepage on the Virginia’s Judicial System website for online court case information, forms, and prepayment.

The General District Court:

  • Handles misdemeanor cases and holds preliminary hearings to determine probable cause in felonies
  • Presides over involuntary mental commitment hearings for Arlington County.
  • Has exclusive jurisdiction over claims for damages not greater than $25,000.
  • Processes records such as criminal warrants, civil cases, and traffic summonses.


Brian. P Henshaw
703-228-7900 (Clerk’s Office)


  • Hon. Daniel Tomas Lopez, Chief Judge
  • Hon. Romaine Frances O’Brien
  • Hon. Jason S. Rucker