What Happens After I File a Petition?
When you first get protection, it's only temporary. The order is called a PPO. You must return to court on the date indicated in the PPO, usually about 15 days, so the judge can determine if a full Protective Order is necessary. Both you and the abuser will be asked to appear in court on that date. During the 15-day period, the police will serve the abuser with a copy of the order, so the abuser will know when the hearing is scheduled.
How Can I Get Protection?
How Can a Restraining Order Help Me?
A restraining order can do the following:
- The court can order the abuser not to have any contact with you, in person or by phone, at home, work or almost anywhere you ask the court to put in the order. The order against contact may also protect other people in your family.
- The court can order the abuser to leave the house or apartment that you and the abuser share, even if it is the abuser’s home.
- Grant you custody of your minor children.
- Order the abuser to pay child support and support you.
- Order the abuser to pay for costs that resulted from the abuse; for example, household bills that are due right away, medical/dental treatment, moving expenses, loss of earnings
- Order the abuser to pay attorney’s fees, and can make the abuser pay damages to you or other people who helped you or got hurt by the abuser
- Order the abuser to receive professional domestic violence counseling, or tell the abuser to go get evaluated or go to AA or NA
What Type of Protective Orders are Available?
1. Emergency Protective Order (EPO): Expires at the end of the third day following issuance or the next day court
is in session, whichever is later)
2. Preliminary Protective Order (PPO): Lasts up to 15 days or until a full hearing.
3. Final Protective Order: Can last up to two (2) years.
How long does it take to become a foster/adoptive parent?
It typically takes a family between three and four months to become an approved foster/adoptive parent after completing all in-service training. The time can vary depending on how quickly families complete the requirements.
Would a child's biological family be involved while a child is living in my home?
Yes, in most circumstances a child’s family remains involved with their child while they are in foster care. Department of Social Service Family Service Specialists will help coordinate contact and visits. Regular contact with their biological families is very important. Foster parents have a big role in supporting a child’s connection with their family.
How long is temporary?
A child’s stay in foster care may be as short as overnight or may be much longer. Some children in foster care become permanent members of a family or are adopted. Each child’s journey is unique but is important to understand that the goal of foster care is for a child to be reunified with his family.
What is the goal of foster care?
The goal of foster care is to provide a safe, stable, nurturing temporary home and services for children who cannot presently remain in their own home.
Who are foster children?
The children range in age from newborn to 18 years. The majority of the children we work with have experienced abuse and neglect. Many of them also may have emotional issues, behavioral problems, school difficulties, developmental delays, or are members of sibling groups who need to stay together. These children represent a variety of racial and ethnic backgrounds. There is a specific need for foster homes for children ages 7 and older.
How do I become a Foster Parent?
Contact the Foster Parent Trainer by phone or e-mail and introduce yourself. You will then be invited to attend an orientation session that will give you a brief overview of the process and our program. After attending orientation and completing an application you will be required to complete 27 hours of pre-service training. During the pre-service training you will meet with a Family Assessment Specialist to complete a home study and other required paperwork.
Who are Foster Parents?
Foster Parents can be single adults and/or married couples. They are financially stable, have adequate bedroom space and meet all state required criminal clearances. They have a love of children and believe in the unique potential of every child. They provide children with guidance, structure, supervision, safety, and discipline. Foster parents appreciate being part of a supportive system of other parents and professionals working together to changes the lives of children.
Is the purpose of CPS to take children out of the home?
In accordance with the Code of Virginia, Social Services also provides foster care prevention/ongoing Child Protective Services. The purpose of this unit is to provide services to prevent further abuse or neglect of a child and to prevent the removal of the child from his/her home. If your family has been referred to ongoing/prevention services one of the following has occurred:
You have voluntarily agreed to work with Social Services to find parenting solutions.
A family assessment has been completed with your family.
A CPS investigation has been completed with your family.
There is a current Court Order indicating that Social Services shall provide services to your family.
There are risk factors and concerns that have been identified surrounding the children and caretakers in your home/family.
There are risk factors that indicate your child is at risk of abuse or neglect or your child is at risk of removal from your home.
Prevention services will work in partnership with the family and other community resources to identify specific behaviors and environmental conditions that need to change to prevent further abuse or neglect and to provide a safe environment for the family and their children).
Does CPS provide foster Care Services?
The CPS unit also provides foster care prevention services to families referred by the community and by Court Order. In addition, the CPS unit attempts outreach to prevent child abuse or neglect by addressing risk issues before they result in maltreatment of children.
What system is in place to protect children?
CPS utilizes a Differential Response System. Once an incoming call/referral is determined to be valid, the Differential Response then helps the local agency determine if the referral will be a Family Assessment or an Investigation. The Structured Decision Making tool helps staff determine if the valid concern should be a Family Assessment or an Investigation. The Family Assessment process is service oriented, strength based and non-punitive. The Investigation Process determines if abuse or neglect have occurred and makes a finding of Founded or Unfounded. During both a Family Assessment and Investigation, safety of the child is addressed as well as risk of future harm.
What happens when a concern is reported to a local agency?
When concerns are reported to the local agency, staff have to first determine if the concerns reported are valid (need attention) or invalid (do not meet criteria for agency follow through). Staff use SDM to assist in making this decision.
In the instance of a traffic stop, should I advise the police officer that I have a concealed handgun permit?
Virginia law does not require you to notify the officer that you have a permit. However, Section 18.2-308.01, of the Code of Virginia, requires you to be in possession of the permit whenever you are carrying a concealed handgun and to display the permit and a government-issued photo-identification upon demand by a law-enforcement officer.
I am a new resident to Virginia and possess a concealed handgun permit issued by a permit-reciprocal state. Will my permit still be honored in Virginia?
A permit issued by a state in which Virginia has established concealed handgun permit reciprocity or recognition will be honored in Virginia as long as the permit remains valid regardless of the change of address. It is suggested that you confirm the validity of the permit with the issuing agency in this instance.
Are military personnel considered residents or nonresidents for the purpose of a concealed handgun permit?
Active military personnel, 21 years of age and older, assigned to a Virginia duty post or the Pentagon may apply for a Virginia resident permit, which are issued by the circuit court of the county or city in which the applicant resides. Virginia Code Section 18.2-308.02 (B.5.) authorizes current military service to be considered proof that the applicant has demonstrated competence with a handgun.
The address on my Nonresident Concealed Handgun Permit is no longer correct. Is my permit still valid?
Yes. Virginia Code Section 18.2-308.06, which governs the issuance of nonresident concealed handgun permits, makes no provisions for changes of address. A permit once issued remains valid until the expiration date is met, or upon suspension or revocation, regardless of the change of address. However, the Virginia State Police will issue change of address cards upon request. Holders of nonresident permits are requested to notify the Virginia State Police, Firearms Transaction Center (FTC) in writing at P.O. Box 85141, Richmond, VA, 23285-5141 or on-line at email@example.com. Additional information is available at http://www.vsp.virginia.gov/Firearms_NonresidentConcealed.shtm.
The address on my Resident Concealed Handgun Permit is no longer correct. Is my permit still valid?
Yes, but you may request a replacement permit if you wish. The clerk of a circuit court that issued a valid concealed handgun permit shall, upon presentation of the valid permit and proof of a new address of residence by the permit holder, issue a replacement permit specifying the permit holder's new address. See 18.2-308.011.
Are Virginia concealed handgun permits issued to non-Virginia residents?
Is a concealed handgun permit issued in another state valid or recognized in Virginia?
States with which Virginia has entered into concealed handgun permit reciprocity agreements, or which Virginia will grant recognition, are listed on our Reciprocity and Recognition page.
Are law enforcement officers subject to the background check when purchasing firearms?
Law enforcement offices are not exempt from the federal misdemeanor crime of domestic violence disqualification and therefore, must consent to a background check when purchasing firearms. The exception to this requirement is the purchase of a duty weapon from a licensed firearms dealer on behalf of an Employer’s Certification Letter.
What are the disqualifications for the purchase of a firearm?
Does one have to have U.S. citizenship to be eligible to purchase a firearm?
A buyer who is a lawful permanent resident alien the United States may purchase firearms in the Commonwealth of Virginia pursuant to the same identification and residency requirements as a citizen. Prohibitions apply, however, to "any alien in the United States in a non-immigrant status" with certain exceptions and a waiver process. Contact the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives if you have questions about these regulations.
Why was my firearms purchase application placed in a status of delay?
The criminal history record information check required prior to the purchase of a firearm in Virginia is accomplished by a name check in conjunction with the purchaser's race, sex, and date of birth. It is not unusual for a "hit" response to occur upon query the national and state databases due to similar or exact personal descriptors of the prospective purchaser and those listed on an arrest record. When this occurs, review is necessary to determine if the prospective purchaser may be the same individual contained in these files, as well as lawful eligibility if probable identification is determined.
What are the laws concerning the private sale of a handgun?
To privately sell a firearm, it is recommended that you safeguard information pertaining to the transaction such as the date the firearm was sold, the complete name and address of the buyer, and the make, model, and serial number of the firearm. The seller and buyer of a handgun must be a resident of the state in which the transfer occurs. Should the firearm ever be located at a crime scene, trace of the firearm will determine the licensed dealer who last sold the firearm and will identify the last buyer of the firearm. To have your name removed from this process, you may consider placing your firearm on consignment with a licensed dealer. This will also ensure that the firearm is transferred only to a lawfully eligible individual.
What is the legal age to purchase ammunition?
Virginia law does not address age requirements for the purchase of ammunition. Federal law requires an individual to be at least 21 years of age to purchase handgun ammunition, and at least 18 years old to purchase rifle or shotgun ammunition.
What is the legal age to purchase or possess a firearm?
A person must be at least 18 years of age to purchase a rifle or shotgun from a licensed firearms dealer. To purchase a handgun from a licensed firearms dealer, you must be at least 21 years of age, pursuant to federal law. For statutory regulations concerning underage persons possessing firearms, refer to Virginia Code Section18.2-308.7, possession or transportation of certain firearms by persons under the age of eighteen.
May I “open carry” a firearm in Virginia?
May I travel through Virginia with a firearm in my vehicle?
Are firearms registered in Virginia?
With the exception of machine guns, firearms are not registered in Virginia.
What are the laws concerning knives; specifically, the carrying of a non-concealed knife, and are there knife designs, blade sizes, etc., that are prohibited?
Virginia Code Section 18.2-311 describes certain weapons, including some knives, which are illegal to possess in Virginia. Additionally, refer to Virginia Code Section 18.2-308 for specific prohibitions concerning concealed weapons. It is suggested that you contact your county or city authorities to inquire as to whether or not there are applicable local ordinances.
Where is the Real Estate Lookup?
The Real Estate Lookup is a service offered by our Geographic Information System's Department. To access that application please use this link.
What departments are in the County Administration Building?
The County Administration building is located at 122 East Main Street, Bedford VA 24523, across from the Bedford Courthouse. The Administration Building is the key hub for many governmental functions including:
- Board of Supervisors
- Children Services (a Division of the Department of Bedford Social Services)
- Community Development
- Building Inspections
- Geographic Information's Systems
- Natural Resources
- Planning & Zoning
- Commissioner of Revenue
- Cooperative Extension
- County Attorney
- Economic Development
- Business Assistance
- Fiscal Management
- Human Resources
- Information Technology
- Public Works
Departments located outside the County Administration Offices:
- Central Garage
- Fire & Rescue
- Nursing Home
- Registrar (new location in the Bedford Central Library)
- Parks & Recreation
- Sheriff's Office
- E911 Dispatch Communications (located below the Sheriff's Department)
- Social Services
- Waste Management/Solid Waste
What is the Administration Building mailing address?
What is the Administration physical address?
Who is eligible for services?
Children's Services may be available to a child who meets at least (1) of the following descriptions:
- Youth who require private placement for special education.
- Youth who are in foster care or eligible for foster care services.
- Youth who are eligible for services through a Child in Need of Services Parental Agreement.
- Youth who have significant emotional or behavioral problems and may require services not available from our agency, require services of multiple agencies, or may be at risk of residential placement.
What is the Children's Services Process?
Understanding the local Children's SA process:
- You should be given information on the local CSA process and timelines for receiving referrals.
- Your FAPT should notify you before your child is assessed for services.
- You should be able to understand the information you receive and itshould be delivered inyour native language, if possible.
- You are to consent and agree inwriting before beginning any services, except when ordered by court.
- You may have the opportunity to read records, challenge information, give permission for release of records and be provided a written copy of the records unless ordered otherwise by the court.
- You have the ability to receive assistance from someone assigned toyou as the case manager from the FAPT as well as members of your family, friends, advocates or other identified members of your support system.
- You will have the opportunity to review the Individual Family Services Plan.
- You can disagree with any part of the services plan, and you can place your concerns in writing to the FAPT and/or CPMT.
- You are to participate and be present for the entire FAPT meeting to discuss your child and family's situation,as well as participate in decision that apply to you and your family.
How does Children's Services work?
Once a FAPT meeting is scheduled:
- The child and family take an active part of the FAPT meeting to discuss their needs.
- A service plan is developed.
- The family signs the service plan, if they agree with the plan.
- Services begin as soon as possible.
- If the family disagrees with the plan, they may ask for a review with the local CPMT.
- Emergency Services may begin immediately, if needed
- Parents will be screened and may be required to make co-payments for non-foster care services
- Parents may be required to make child support payments for foster care services
- Parents are not required to make co-payments for special education services.