A marriage can end for many different reasons. Historically, people who wanted a divorce had to petition a court alleging adultery, abandonment or other criteria. In past generations, this was often far more difficult than it is today, not just with regard to the social and societal pressures and stigmas that came with divorce.
Virginia law allows for more than one way to legally end a marriage. A Separation divorce is one type of “Divorce from the Bond of Matrimony,” known to many people as a “No Fault” divorce. It’s a dissolution of marriage that doesn’t require one party to have been wronged (in a specific, legally-defined way) by their spouse. If you are interested in a low-conflict end to your marriage, it may be helpful for you to understand the basic concepts related to this type of divorce, which can be less expensive and less stressful than some of the alternatives.
What are the requirements?
Whereas other types of Virginia divorce call for criteria like cruelty, abandonment, adultery or imprisonment for a felony, the main requirement for a “no-fault” Divorce from the Bond of Matrimony is separate habitation for a year, or in some cases, six months. An attorney can explain your options if you are interested in a Separation divorce.
Do I have to go to court?
While a divorce must be granted by a judge, there are cases in which an appearance in court is not necessary. Every case is different. Matters like child custody, support and property division can complicate a divorce even for couples who are ending their marriage amicably, and such issues can require visits to court.
Get the answers you need
Divorce can bring up a wide array of emotions and life-altering changes. Even if you are committed to a peaceful divorce, it can be very important to obtain legal advice before choosing a course of legal action.