Exemption to the 4:00 p.m. Burning Law
For Certified Prescribed Burn Managers ONLY


Prior to February 1st of the year an exemption is desired.


  • Prescribed Fire and Smoke Management Guide [ PDF format ]
  • Form 4.9 - Prescribed Burn Management Plan (old Form 69) [ Word format ]
  • Form 4.7 - Application for Exemption to the 4 p.m. Burning Law (old Form 180) (Certified Prescribed Burn Managers Only) [ Word format ]

Form 4.7 must be completely filled out and required documents submitted to the State Forester.

Each project you plan on burning during the exemption period will need a separate exemption application completed and submitted.

The application can be submitted at anytime from May 1st through the following February 1st. The applicant will be notified once a decision is made regarding the exemption.


The exemption is for the entire period the 4PM burning law is in effect, from February 15th to April 30, and can be revoked at anytime should conditions warrant.

It is critical that all requirements of the Certified Prescribed Burn Manager be strictly followed.


Call the nearest VDOF Regional Office on the morning of the planned burn.

The 4:00 p.m. Law § 10.1-1142 B shall not apply if:

  1. The fire is set for “prescribed burning” that is conducted in accordance with a “prescription” and managed by a “certified prescribed burn manager” as those terms are defined in § 10.1-1150.1;
  2. The burn is conducted in accordance with § 10.1-1150.4;
  3. The State Forester has approved the application for the prescribed burn; and
  4. The burn is being conducted for one of the following purposes:
    1. control of exotic and invasive plant species that cannot be accomplished at other times of the year;
    2. wildlife habitat establishment and maintenance that cannot be accomplished at other times of the year; or
    3. management necessary for natural heritage resources.
      The State Forester may on the day of any burn planned to be conducted pursuant to this subsection revoke his approval of the prescription for the burn if hazardous fire conditions exist. The State Forester may revoke the certification of any certified prescribed burn manager who violates any provision of this subsection.

Need more information?

Contact your local VDOF office.

Last modified: Tuesday, 31-Jan-2017 15:37:51 EST