However, note that Virginia does not have an error-free separation procedure. Sometimes marriages break down without any particular guilt resting on both sides. You can get an error-free divorce in Virginia if you live apart from your spouse for a year or if you live apart from your spouse for six months, if you have a separation contract and you do not have minor children. Given the percentage of marriages that end in divorce, anyone could be affected by a separation or divorce. Dissolution of marriage is often linked to property rights and financial issues and can pose complex legal problems, especially when children are involved. Sometimes separated spouses choose to stay under the same roof or use their children out of economic necessity. You can always set a separation date in a divorce in Virginia, if: If there are grounds for desertion, a lawsuit for a divorce from the bed and counsel can be filed with the court immediately after the separation. If desertion persists for more than one year from the date the parties were initially separated, desertion is sufficient to provide grounds for divorce from the marriage. Separation agreements are limited in scope in several respects, which the parties to separation or divorce should understand: although a lawyer is not technically required in divorce proceedings, each spouse should obtain separate legal assistance when there are divorce issues that can be challenged, property rights must be determined or custody of the children challenged. The same lawyer cannot represent both parties in a divorce case because there will be a conflict of interest. This is the crucial topic of most divorces.
To determine custody of minor children (under the age of 18), the court is governed by a standard: the best interests of the child. The court may grant “common parental custody” where both parents have a role to play in the child`s decision-making, or “single legal custody,” where a parent is ultimately responsible for decisions in the best interests of the child. Custody of a parent is not granted as a reward or is not taken away from a parent. On the contrary, custody is entrusted to the parent who best adapts to the child`s child care task and who is able to control and guide the child.