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Virginia Divorce Basics

  • Posted on: Sep 24 2018
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To file for divorce in Virginia, an individual must file a complaint for divorce with the circuit court. Once a complaint has been filed, the opposing party is served with divorce papers. If the parties agree on all or most issues, then the divorce can be obtained without holding a trial. In all other cases, however, a hearing is held in which the court resolves all outstanding disputed issues. In order to obtain a divorce in Virginia, at least one spouse in a married couple must have been a resident of Virginia for at least six months prior to filing for divorce. Virginia recognizes both fault-based and no-fault divorce.

No-fault Divorce in Virginia

No-fault divorce requires no evidence of fault by either party. The only requirement for no-fault divorce in Virginia is that a spouse has lived separately from his or her partner for at least one year prior to filing. However, if the spouses don’t have children and have already entered into a property settlement agreement, then the separation requirement is reduced to six months.

Fault-based Divorce in Virginia

Fault-based divorce requires a demonstration of fault by one of the parties. In Virginia, the grounds for fault-based divorce are:

  • Abandonment
  • Adultery
  • Imprisonment for over one year after the marriage
  • Cruelty

Absolute and Qualified Divorce in Virginia

Virginia recognizes both absolute and qualified divorce. Absolute divorce permanently dissolves the marriage, permits remarriage of the parties, and eliminates property claims. Qualified divorce, on the other hand, allows for the separation of the parties and provides for support. As opposed to absolute divorce, qualified divorce isn’t permanent, it doesn’t allow remarriage, and it doesn’t necessarily terminate property claims. And although it is beyond the scope of this article, qualified divorce is sometimes preferable to absolute divorce. If you’d like information on any of the above topics, it is highly recommended that you contact an experienced Virginia family law attorney to discuss your options.

Virginia Family Law Attorneys

In Virginia, divorce is a complicated matter, and mistakes during the process can be costly. Therefore, if you are considering a divorce in Virginia, please contact the experienced Virginia family law attorneys at Walker Jones, PC, as soon as possible. With offices in Warrenton, Virginia, and Washington, Virginia, Walker Jones, PC, is available to handle all of your Northern Virginia family law needs. Whether you are seeking an absolute divorce, a qualified divorce, or you just need general family law advice, our award-winning attorneys will give your case the personal and professional attention that it deserves. At Walker Jones, PC, we utilize our experience and knowledge while vigorously pursuing your case in the courtroom, at the settlement table, or in negotiations. Regardless of your situation, our goal is always to achieve the best result possible. If you need family law assistance in Virginia, please contact us today to schedule a private consultation.

Posted in: Family Law