can spouses divorce each other while continuing to live in the same home

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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can spouses divorce each other while continuing to live in the same home

Need to obtain a divorce but I was told my
spouse had to move out before I could file

Asked on March 26, 2016 under Family Law, Virginia


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

Yes. In VA, in order to obtain a no-fault divorce, you and your spouse must live apart without interruption (no periods of living together) for at least 1 year. If you have no minor children and you enter into a valid separation agreement, you will only have to live apart for 6 months.
You can also file on grounds of fault, which include:

adultery or other sexual acts outside the marriage;
willful desertion or abandonment;
reasonable fear of bodily harm; or
felony conviction with a sentence of at least 1 year and some period of actual imprisonment.

Each ground requires specific proof and some defenses are available. That having beens said, there may be some cases in which the proof of fault can effect the division of marital property or alimony award.
At this point, you should consult directly with a local divorce attorney; they can best advise you further.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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