Divorces don’t need to be mean or full of fighting. You can have a very amicable divorce built on kindness and respect. Splitting up your marriage and restructuring your family into two homes has many legal implications, but it doesn’t mean that you hate your spouse. It’s simply a decision between the two of you to take your party in a new direction.
You decide how you want to split assets, set up custody arrangements, and if either party should pay financial support. This process can be fraught with tension for many couples, but it certainly doesn’t have to be. You and your partner can mutually agree on how you want the divorce to proceed, and in this situation, you can work through your divorce quickly and inexpensively.
An amicable divorce in Virginia is the easiest type of divorce, and there are law firms that specialize in helping you navigate a fast, amicable divorce. This guide explains what you need to know about getting an amicable divorce in Virginia.
What Is an Amicable Divorce?
An amicable divorce simply refers to an uncontested divorce. Both sides have agreed to the divorce. Even more importantly, both sides agree on how to split up assets and handle custody, child support, and alimony.
The word “amicable” comes from the Latin word for “friend,” and an amicable divorce keeps your friendship in mind. You don’t drag each other through the mud or spend a lot of time and money jumping through legal hoops. You work with a divorce attorney who helps you handle the process as quickly, efficiently, and fairly as possible.
How to Qualify for a Fast Amicable Divorce
You can get an amicable divorce in Virginia as long as you meet the right criteria. The following three statements must apply to your situation.
1. Virginia Resident
You or your spouse must have lived in Virginia for at least six months. Only one of you must have lived in Virginia. You will need to file your divorce in another state if you don’t have Virginia residency.
2. Not Cohabitating
You must not be cohabitating when you apply for an amicable divorce. Couples with children need to have lived separately for at least a year, and those with no children only need to have lived apart for six months.
3. Agree to the Terms
You both must agree to the terms of the divorce. Couples who cannot agree on how to divide up their assets, handle custody arrangements, or deal with support payments need to take another route.
This type of divorce lets you work through the divorce process quickly. Disagreements slow the process and force you to spend excessive amounts on legal fees. A family member or counselor can help you get on the road to an amicable divorce, and an attorney can assist you with the legal aspects of filing for one.
5 Tips for Getting an Amicable Divorce in Virginia
An amicable divorce saves time and money but pulling off this feat isn’t always easy. Tensions can run high when you’re getting a divorce, and if you want to stay friendly during the process, you should keep the following tips in mind.
1. Commit to a Blame-Free Divorce
You and your spouse need to commit to a blame-free divorce. You decide that both of you want to split up, and you agree not to spend time blaming each other for the decision. Don’t look at the end of your marriage as a failure — instead, see this time as a joint decision to take your lives and your relationship in a new direction.
2. Clearly Negotiate the Terms of Your Divorce
Contested divorces need an attorney to negotiate the terms of the divorce, leading to extra money spent because of the amount of time this takes. With an amicable divorce, you handle this part of the process on your own. Make sure that you’ve accounted for all your assets and co-parenting responsibilities and that you both agree to the terms.
3. Put the Needs of Your Children First
Couples with and without children can benefit from an amicable divorce, but it’s especially important if you’re trying to insulate your children from contention. Agree to keep the needs of your children at the forefront of your minds and keep that promise in sight as you navigate the divorce process.
4. Work With an Experienced Attorney
Some attorneys are ready for a fight, and if you’re trying to have a peaceful divorce, you don’t need them. You should try to find a divorce attorney who specializes in uncontested divorces and who can help you through the process as quickly and easily as possible.
5. Decide If You Want to Go to Court
You don’t have to go to court if you agree to the terms of your divorce. You can avoid court time and just file the paperwork, but if you want a very fast divorce, you may need to go to the courthouse at least once.
A divorce attorney can help guide you through this process. Make sure that you and your partner both agree on the terms of your divorce and then reach out to an attorney to learn about the options.
Mistakes to Avoid with an Amicable Divorce in Virginia
Mistakes can slow down the process and cost you additional money in legal fees along the way. Avoid the following things if you’re trying to get a fast divorce.
- Not agreeing with your partner: Lengthy disagreements will cost you more in legal fees and court time.
- Not meeting the criteria: You need to ensure that you meet residency and cohabitation requirements before filing for a divorce.
- Not working with a specialist: You need a lawyer who specializes in amicable divorces to ensure everything goes smoothly.
The process can be drawn out if you reach out to an attorney who encourages you to change your agreement or “fight” for different terms. Always make sure the legal representation you consult has experience with these types of divorce.
Contact Us for a Fast Amicable Divorce Today
Contact the Law Office of Michael Ephraim for more information about how to get an amicable divorce in Virginia. We offer uncontested divorces that take just three weeks and don’t require any court time. We can also expedite divorces in a single week with a short court appearance.