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Do I Need to Have a Cause to Divorce My Wife?

Divorce, Wife, Cause of Divorce, Man
Do I Need Cause to Divorce My Wife

There are many reasons to divorce your wife. They can be varied but they must all boil down to what the family court considers to be adequate legal grounds for divorcing your wife.

A hybrid divorce state such as Virginia allow spouses to file for divorce based on fault or may also not involve fault.

No-fault Divorces in Virginia have only one viable ground: Divorce based on separation. Spouses who wish to qualify for this must prove that they have lived separately and without cohabitation or sexual relations for a continuous period of one (1) year. Under certain circumstances, the Virginia family court can lower the period to six (6) months.

The acceptable fault-based reasons for Divorce in Virginia are the following:

1. Adultery or Sodomy

Adultery occurs when a married person has voluntary sexual relations with any person that is not his or her spouse. Proof of adultery is strict, satisfactory, and conclusive that the other spouse did have sexual relations with another person and there must be corroboration of the evidence.

Sodomy is a sexual act, other than intercourse, and to constitute grounds for divorce, it must be committed with someone other than your spouse.

2. Conviction of a felony

If a spouse has been convicted of a felony and sentenced to prison for more than one year, and is in prison, then a ground for divorce based on conviction of a felony exists.

3. Willful desertion or abandonment for at least one year

Desertion is a breaking off of the marriage cohabitation and the intent to desert is required.

4. Cruelty by one spouse that causes the other spouse to have reasonable fear of bodily harm

Cruelty requires acts that generally cause bodily harm and make living together unsafe. One act of violence is generally not considered a ground for divorce unless the act was so atrocious as to endanger life, or it caused reasonable apprehension of danger in the future.

Truth be told, it is harder to get a Fault-based Divorce in Virginia, since the Fault grounds are very limited, hard to be proved, and will most probably be contested by your spouse.

Another thing to note is that, if both spouses agree on all matters, the divorce may be classified as “uncontested”. Uncontested Divorces in Virginia are typically quicker and less expensive. To be eligible for this type of Virginia Divorce, both spouses will submit appropriate forms and must agree on every issue of the divorce. Some uncontested divorces in Virginia will be heard in court, while others can be heard through a deposition or affidavit.


The idea of filing for a divorce can be overwhelming. To think about the cause of your divorce, to gather evidence to prove your cause, and worry about the cost of getting divorced can be daunting. The Virginia Divorce process can be complicated. Consulting with an experienced Virginia Family Lawyer should help you understand what type of Divorce you should file. Contact Attorney Tori Bramble, Divorce Lawyer in Virginia at (540) 628-7340 and schedule a consultation today.

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