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Divorce in Virginia

Virginia is nicknamed Old Dominion. Here, there are two kinds: divorce from bed and board (partial divorce); and divorce from the bond of matrimony (total divorce). Speak to a lawyer in Virginia.

To file for divorce, legal separation, or annulment in Virginia, you or your spouse must have been a resident of the state for at least six months before filing, and one of you still lives in VA at the time of filing.1 Members of the U.S. armed forces can also file for divorce if they had stayed in the state for six months before being stationed in another country or territory.

Virginia accepts both no-fault and at-fault divorce grounds. You can get a no-fault divorce in Virginia if you and your spouse have lived separate and apart for at least one year. You can also get a no-fault divorce if you have a legal separation; you don’t share any biological/adopted children and have lived separate and apart for at least six months. Fault-based reasons for divorce include willful desertion for one year, adultery, sodomy outside marriage, or buggery, cruelty causing reasonable body harm, and conviction for more than a year.2

Virginia is an equitable distribution property state, and only property acquired during the marriage is subject to division. Virginia divorce laws attempt to distribute marital property equitably and fairly. The judge will consider factors such as non-monetary contributions, contributions to a partner’s education, and economic misconduct during the property division case.3

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1VA ST § 20-97

2VA ST § 20-91(A)(1)-(A)(6)

3VA ST § 20-107.3

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