Virginia's legally recognized grounds for divorce

A marriage that sours can cause emotional and financial strain for everyone involved, including children. Therefore, divorce is sometimes the best option. There are, of course, several considerations that must be taken into account before pursuing marriage dissolution, including property division, child custody, child support and spousal support. Yet, before those issues are addressed in a legal sense, one must be able to meet Virginia's requirements for divorce.

There are certain legally recognized grounds for divorce in Virginia. Adultery is one reason that is recognized by the law, and it is one that is utilized by many. Yet it is not the only legal justification for divorce. A couple can also seek divorce if a felony conviction leads to at least a year's worth of incarceration and no cohabitation occurs during that period. Divorce will also be granted by the court if one party is cruel, harms or abandons the other party, but only after one year has passed.

There are other legally recognized reasons for divorce. Couples who have lived apart for a year or more without cohabitation can successfully seek divorce, and so, too, can couples who have no children and who have lived separately and without cohabitation under a separation agreement for at least six months.

As one can see, there are often time requirements that apply to divorce cases. This can be frustrating for Virginians, but it actually gives them the opportunity to fully assess their situation. While this certainly includes deciding whether divorce is appropriate, it also gives them time to develop a legal strategy to address the legal issues mentioned above. A family law attorney who is experienced in this area can be an invaluable tool, providing both guidance and advice to ensure that marriage dissolution issues are competently handled. Only then can a Virginian best ensure that he or she will start his or her new life off in the best position possible given the facts at hand.

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