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Virginia Divorce Questions & Answers

2 Answers | Asked in Divorce for Virginia on

Q: I got married abroad. When I immigrated to the U.S. in 1994, my wife did not come. Lost touch, can I get a divorce?

Wayne E. Holcomb answered on May 17, 2019

Very unusual and interesting question. The answer is yes, and we have worked through one of these before here in my firm. Would take too long to outline the process on this site. Contact a good family law firm, and they will be able to help. My best to you.

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1 Answer | Asked in Appeals / Appellate Law and Divorce for Virginia on

Q: I am looking to appeal a final order of a divorce case in Virginia

Michael Christopher Miller answered on May 16, 2019

You need to make sure your objections were presented to the judge so the judge has an opportunity to correct what you may object to. Note that orders become final 21 days after entry.

You must notice your appeal with 30 days of entry of the final order.

1 Answer | Asked in Child Support and Divorce for Virginia on

Q: Can the length of child support payments be shortened until just 16 if my wife and I agree in a separation agreement?

Michael Christopher Miller answered on May 15, 2019

Can you and your wife make that agreement? Yes.

Will the court enforce the agreement if someone chooses to violate, e.g., your wife seeks child support past age 16? Probably not.

Parties cannot contract away the power of the courts to protect the welfare of children. Child support...
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1 Answer | Asked in Divorce for Virginia on

Q: He bought the house before we got married. Of the 10 years he's owned it, we were married 3 years. Am I owed equity?

I have a property division question. He bought the house before we got married. Of the 10 years he's owned it, we were married 3 years and I paid towards the mortgage during this time. I was never on the deed/mortgage, but it's documented that I paid the bills for the house and contributed... Read more »

Lisa Mathews answered on May 7, 2019

Yes, you are probably entitled to a value equal to some amount of equity in the house. In a Virginia equitable division of assets during a divorce, property is divided into three types: marital, separate and hybrid. Marital property is divided between the parties, separate property is left to the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce for Virginia on

Q: In VA. Divorce- Complaint ent to def. by sheriff and was posted. Def. gave no response after 21 days...what do I do now?

Judge says i did not properly serve the complaint on the defendant.

Wayne E. Holcomb answered on May 7, 2019

If you have verification that the Complaint was served by the Sheriff, it is possible that the certificate of service from the Sheriff did not make it to the Judge's file? Or was there question about the address? There is also a general requirement to follow posted service with a mailing. Without... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce for Virginia on

Q: Virginia divorce papers posted to the defendant. No response after 21 days. Does that mean you have to go to court?

Michael Christopher Miller answered on Apr 29, 2019

If served by posting, you still have to give notice, etc. and proceed.

Va. Code § 20-99 provides you can forego notice if served personally. "5. In cases where such suits have been commenced, the defendant has been served pursuant to the provisions of subdivision 1 of § 8.01-296, and the...
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1 Answer | Asked in Divorce for Virginia on

Q: Virginia 20-99. What does pleadings mean?

Michael Christopher Miller answered on Apr 22, 2019

The complaint for divorce. And, any answers or counterclaims thereafter.

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce for Virginia on

Q: 8.01-296 VA code..I've given ALL documents to court and defendent by sheriff postings twice.

Defendent did not respond and is well beyond 21 days. I told clerk i wanted to pursue judgement by default. Clerk said there are some papers to fill out. What papers? Clerk told me I was almost done and had only one thing left to do but couldn't tell me what. Do I have to write a letter to the... Read more »

James H. Wilson Jr. answered on Apr 22, 2019

Judgments or decrees by default are not allowed in divorce or annulment cases in Virginia.

Rule 3:19 of the Rules of the Supreme Court of Virginia provides as follows:

..."(c) Default Judgment and Damages.

(1) Except in suits for divorce or annulling a marriage, the court...
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1 Answer | Asked in Divorce for Virginia on

Q: § 8.01-296. Manner of serving process upon natural persons. I have read this statute many times. Can you explain it

I served the divorce complaint by sheriff service. The judges telling me that I did not properly serve the complaint. I'm not sure what to do next

James H. Wilson Jr. answered on Apr 19, 2019

The starting point for service of process in divorce cases is Virginia Code Section 20-99. The primary consideration in service for divorce cases is the relief sought. Under the concept of divisible divorce, a marriage consists of two components - a legal relationship or res, and property rights... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts and Divorce for Virginia on

Q: In Va, has a circuit court rule it has subject matter jurisdiction reverse itself when parties tried to enforce it?

In a final divorce decree, a Chesapeake Circuit judge ordered it had subject matter jurisdiction to incorporate the parties' separation agreement and for the parties to strictly comply with its terms. When one of the parties attempted to enforce the terms of the incorporated agreement, the very... Read more »

Bruce Alexander Minnick answered on Apr 4, 2019

Although I do not practice law in Virginia, many generic legal questions are answered the same way in all states. For example, most states have adopted the same laws in areas that lend themselves to interstate enforcement through compacts, including issues that arise in divorce proceedings that... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Divorce for Virginia on

Q: FDivorce/family law in VA. Can motions to stay ,reconsider and an appeal be filed for at same time?dead line to file?

Michael Christopher Miller answered on Apr 3, 2019

Yes, file all 3.

Orders become final after 21 days, i.e., the judge cannot modify them even if the judge wanted to. So, the motion to stay the finality of the order suspends the 21 day clock to allow more time to rule on the motion to reconsider.

Notice of appeals from circuit court...
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1 Answer | Asked in Divorce for Virginia on

Q: If divorced from another state and now living in two different states, can a Virginia lawyer help with unpaid alimony?

My in-laws divorced from Kentucky. My father-in-law lives in California and my mother-in-law now lives with us in Virginia. My father-in-law reduced court ordered payments soon after the divorce and now doesn’t pay at all even though my mother-in-law brought him back to court before leaving... Read more »

Michael Christopher Miller answered on Mar 7, 2019

You need to go to the state where the payor resides to enforce the order.

Only Kentucky, the state that ordered spousal support, can modify the order.

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce for Virginia on

Q: What are the notices required for spousal support and what do I need to include in the paper work for divorce?

It is referring to VA code 20-107.1 (H) Also why do I have to redo my plaintiff affidavit?

James H. Wilson Jr. answered on Mar 4, 2019

Virginia Code Section 20-107.1(H) sets forth the required notices for court-ordered spousal support only, while Virginia Code Section 20-60.3 sets forth the required notices for court-ordered spousal support where the parents have a mutual child support obligation. Local practices in Virginia... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce for Virginia on

Q: Is it possible to get a divorce case transferred from another state to Va? If so, would the court make that determinat?

Neither party reside in the current state, one lives here, the other in Fl. Would both parties agree to move the case or can the court make that determination?

Wayne E. Holcomb answered on Jan 25, 2019

Certainly if you agree, you can dismiss your divorce suit in another state and, in essence, move it to Virginia--to file after you have lived here for at least 6 months. Even if you both do not agree, in some cases, the party that started the suit, can dismiss it there and refile here in VA. The... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce for Virginia on

Q: I am a military member who has previously lived in FL and I am registered to vote in FL. Can I file for divorce in FL?

I am currently stationed in VA.

Jessica Wildeus answered on Jan 17, 2019

You need to check with a Florida attorney to answer this question.

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce for Virginia on

Q: My mother in law gave me a cashier check with the minor children name on it. I took the cashier check put it in a

Separate Account with the children and myself. Going through divorce now husband trying to get money. State Virginia can he?

Michael Christopher Miller answered on Jan 7, 2019

Va. Code 20-107.3 has your answers.

In a divorce, only marital property is divisible between the spouses. "2. Marital property is (i) all property titled in the names of both parties, whether as joint tenants, tenants by the entirety or otherwise, except as provided by subdivision A 3, (ii)...
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1 Answer | Asked in Divorce and Family Law for Virginia on

Q: Is it necessary to file for Divorce in VA if Marriage Certificate was not filed with court within 30 days of ceremony?

My fiance and I obtained a Marriage License from a VA Court Clerks office and held a marriage ceremony in the presence of 150 guests (within 60 days time of obtaining the license) in Virginia. However, the marriage certificate was never filed by the officiant after the ceremony. If the Marriage... Read more »

James H. Wilson Jr. answered on Dec 15, 2018

Virginia's public policy favors marriage and the validity of marriage in the Commonwealth. As such, Virginia has several curative statutes that may validate imperfect marriages. In addition, a party who questions the validity of a marriage may file a suit to determine the validity of the marriage... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce for Virginia on

Q: I want my marriage to end. My husband is mentally and physically abusive. He will not leave. He had stolen items he gave

Items he gave me as gifts he has taken and wont give back. What can i do

James H. Wilson Jr. answered on Dec 15, 2018

A spouse may file immediately in Virginia for a divorce from bed and board on grounds of cruelty or reasonable apprehension of physical harm, or desertion and abandonment. The pendente lite or temporary relief available after such a case is filed can include a protective order, exclusive... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce for Virginia on

Q: alimony payments end upon my ex-wife cohabitating after one year.

the one year date is approaching. do i need to do anything? can i just stop paying or do i need to go back to court to cease payments?

(in virginia)

Wayne E. Holcomb answered on Nov 26, 2018

In short, no you cannot stop paying without a Court's involvement and a new Order. This existing Order remains in effect until a Court enters a contrary Order. You will likely have to prove that she is living with someone else for more than a year however, and at times, that's not as easy as it... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce for Virginia on

Q: I am needing to file for a divorce.

I live in Colonial Heights, Virginia. My estranged husband is somewhere in California. He was recently released from prison there according to family. Since I don't know where he is, what are my options?

Wayne E. Holcomb answered on Nov 19, 2018

You will have to give him notice of the divorce filing of course. If we can find him, all the better, but if not, we can provide notice to him by what is called "Publication." That is an established procedure for exactly your type of situation. It involves publications out in California in his... Read more »

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