Hon. J. Barrett Chappell, Jr.
Clerk of the Circuit Court
The Clerk of the Circuit Court is a constitutional officer elected every eight years. The Clerk serves the citizens of the County of Dinwiddie. The current Clerk of Court, J. Barrett Chappell, Jr., has served since 2008.
The Office of the Clerk of Circuit Court dates back to the 1700s. From that time to the present, the Clerk’s duties have changed significantly, but the office remains vitally important to the citizens of the county and each city.
The Code of Virginia lists more than 800 responsibilities of the Clerk, many of which are complex and challenging. The Clerk serves as the recorder of deeds and probate judge, issues marriage licenses and fictitious names, and is the official court administrator for all civil and criminal court cases. In this latter capacity, the Clerk creates and maintains all court files and records, prepares court orders and jury lists, contacts jurors and issues summons and court processes.
Circuit Court Clerks in Virginia perform duties that in many states are divided among three or four separate offices. Virginia has chosen to combine judicial and administrative functions into a single office--saving citizens significant tax dollars.