Virginia Divorce Laws 1

In: Virginia

Divorce Law Basics in the State of Virginia

Also See: Virginia Marriage Laws

Statute: Virginia State Divorce Code (Title 20, Chapter 6):

No-Fault Grounds:

  • Living separately without cohabitation for at least one year
  • Living separately without cohabitation for at least six months with a legal separation agreement and without children

At-Fault Grounds:

  • Adultery
  • Conviction of a felony subsequent to the marriage and sentenced to confinement for one year or more
  • Cruelty or willful desertion or abandonment for at least one year

Residency: Either party must be a resident of the county at the time of filing

Legal Separation Recognized? Yes. Alimony, property distribution and child support can be awarded.

Counseling Requirements: The court may require the parties to attend an educational seminar when a child is involved.

Property Distribution: Virginia relies on “equitable distribution” so the court will distribute the marital property “in an equitable manner if the parties can’t agree on their own. Separate property (property acquired prior to the marriage, as a gift or through inheritance) is not included in property distribution. Fault may be considered.

Alimony: Alimony may be awarded to either party at the discretion of the court. Fault may be considered.


  • A. Fentress

    I am in a Post Divorce war with my ex as to the distribution of the 401k and retirement, and his lawyer is trying to use a formula of 27%, of the retirement & 401k and my stipulation agreement says 1/2 of the everything accrued during the marriage. Is their a code outside of the stipulation thats says I have to use a code, the Judge says it has to be 1/2 during the marriage agreement/stipulation. My new lawyer is firends with my husbands lawyer and I think they are trying to carry me.