Witness testimony; accompanied by certified facility dogs. (HB482)

Introduced By

Del. Rob Bell (R-Charlottesville)


Passed Committee
Passed House
Passed Senate
Signed by Governor
Became Law


Witness testimony accompanied by certified facility dogs. Provides that in any criminal proceeding the attorney for the Commonwealth or the defendant may request and the court may enter an order authorizing the use of a certified facility dog to aid a testifying witness, provided that the use of a certified facility dog will aid the witness in providing testimony and the presence and use of the certified facility dog will not interfere with or distract from the testimony or proceedings. The bill provides that the court may make any orders necessary to preserve the fairness of the proceeding, including imposing restrictions on and instructing the jury regarding the presence of the certified facility dog. The bill defines "certified facility dog" as a dog that (i) has completed training and been certified by a program accredited by Assistance Dogs International or another organization whose main purpose is to improve training, placement, and utilization of assistance dogs and (ii) is accompanied by a duly trained handler. This bill is identical to SB 420. Read the Bill »


Bill Has Passed


01/08/2018Prefiled and ordered printed; offered 01/10/18 18104420D
01/08/2018Referred to Committee for Courts of Justice
01/16/2018Assigned Courts sub: Subcommittee #1
01/22/2018Subcommittee recommends reporting with substitute (8-Y 0-N)
01/29/2018Reported from Courts of Justice with substitute (18-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
01/29/2018Committee substitute printed 18105729D-H1
01/31/2018Read first time
02/01/2018Read second time
02/01/2018Committee substitute agreed to 18105729D-H1
02/01/2018Engrossed by House - committee substitute HB482H1
02/02/2018Read third time and passed House BLOCK VOTE (98-Y 0-N)
02/02/2018VOTE: BLOCK VOTE PASSAGE (98-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
02/05/2018Constitutional reading dispensed
02/05/2018Referred to Committee for Courts of Justice
02/12/2018Reported from Courts of Justice with substitute (9-Y 6-N) (see vote tally)
02/12/2018Committee substitute printed 18107096D-S1
02/13/2018Constitutional reading dispensed (39-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
02/14/2018Read third time
02/14/2018Reading of substitute waived
02/14/2018Committee substitute agreed to 18107096D-S1
02/14/2018Engrossed by Senate - committee substitute HB482S1
02/14/2018Passed Senate with substitute (31-Y 9-N) (see vote tally)
02/15/2018Placed on Calendar
02/16/2018Placed on Calendar
02/16/2018Passed by for the day
02/19/2018Passed by for the day
02/20/2018Senate substitute rejected by House 18107096D-S1 (0-Y 98-N)
02/20/2018VOTE: REJECTED (0-Y 98-N) (see vote tally)
02/22/2018Senate insisted on substitute (40-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
02/22/2018Senate requested conference committee
02/23/2018House acceded to request
02/26/2018Conferees appointed by Senate
02/26/2018Senators: McDougle, Stuart, Howell
02/27/2018Conferees appointed by House
02/27/2018Delegates: Bell, Robert B., Gilbert, Herring
03/06/2018C Amended by conference committee
03/07/2018Conference report agreed to by Senate (31-Y 6-N) (see vote tally)
03/08/2018Conference report agreed to by House (95-Y 0-N)
03/08/2018VOTE: ADOPTION (95-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
03/10/2018Bill text as passed House and Senate (HB482ER)
03/10/2018Signed by Speaker
03/10/2018Bill text as passed House and Senate reprinted (HB482ER)
03/12/2018Signed by President
03/26/2018Enrolled Bill communicated to Governor on March 26, 2018
03/26/2018G Governor's Action Deadline Midnight, April 9, 2018
03/29/2018G Approved by Governor-Chapter 524 (effective 7/1/18)
03/29/2018G Acts of Assembly Chapter text (CHAP0524)


This bill was discussed on the floor of the General Assembly. Below is all of the video that we have of that discussion, 2 clips in all, totaling 1 minute.