Virginia’s highest court is the Supreme Court of Virginia. The court has six justices and one chief justice, who is chosen by a majority of the members of the court. (Source: Virginia Constitution)

Judicial Selection

The legislature votes to appoint justices to 12-year terms on the Supreme Court of Virginia. Justices may stand for reappointment by the legislature to additional terms in the same appointment process. When a seat opens in the middle of a justice’s term, the legislature votes to appoint a judicial candidate to fill the vacancy. The appointed justice serves a 12-year term. If the legislature is not in session, the governor may appoint a candidate to serve until the next legislative session. There are no term limits. The mandatory retirement age is 73. 

State Constitution

Virginia has had six state constitutions adopted between 1776 and 1970. As of January 1, 2024, it had 53 amendments. (Source: John Dinan, 2024)


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