New Criminal Justice Reforms in Virginia Go into Effect July 1, 2020

On April 10, 2020, Virginia Governor Ralph Northam announced that he signed six (6) criminal justice bills, which will go into effect on July 1, 2020.

New Virginia criminal laws are:

  • An increase of the felony larceny threshold from $500 to $1000
  • A repeal of the requirement that the driver’s license of a person convicted of any violation of the law who fails or refuses to provide for immediate payment of fines or costs be suspended (This bill requires the DMV to return or reinstate any person’s driver’s license that was suspended prior to July 1, 2019, solely for non-payment of fines or costs, with a reinstatement fee.)
  • An increase of the age when a Commonwealth’s Attorney can transfer a juvenile to be tried as an adult without court approval from 14 to 16
  • A repeal of the practice of suspending driver’s licenses for non-driving related offenses, including drug offenses and theft of motor fuel
  • A modification of the current standards of writs of actual innocence under which individuals may only pursue writs of actual innocence under very narrow circumstances
  • A change to now allow a court to permit an inmate to earn credits against any fines and court costs imposed against him or her by performing community service as opposed to current Virginia law, which only allows credit to be earned before or after imprisonment.

Be sure to check back in July for LeCruise Law’s criminal legislative update.