If you are getting divorced, thinking about divorce, have a contested divorce, have an uncontested divorce, any other family law issue or are thinking about separating from your spouse - WE CAN HELP!
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Our office has experienced family law at attorneys. Brian has been recognized twice as one of Virginia's Legal Elite, as a Super Lawyer and one of Coastal Virginia's Top Lawyers in Family Law and Divorce.
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Divorce Chesapeake Virginia
Divorce is a word that makes people cringe. Whether one is happily married, thinking about marriage or has been through a divorce the "nails on the chalkboard" feeling never quite goes away. Why should it? When one goes through a divorce it affects everything - your spouse, any children, finances, living arrangements, employment, and so much more. It is simply one of the most difficult things that a person can go through. Our office strives to make the emotional and financial struggles as minimal as possible. There is no way that anyone can guarantee a stress-free divorce but we can tell you that we are here to listen and to answer your questions.
Let's be honest, when you separate from your spouse it is going to be difficult, traumatic, and a transition for everyone. There are ways to make it easier for you, your spouse, any children and your wallet. There are options. Whether it is creating a Separation Agreement or having to file a Complaint for Divorce we can discuss those options with you. We are also able to talk you through the divorce process in Virginia whether it is in Chesapeake, Virginia Beach, Norfolk, Portsmouth, etc., so you can have some understanding about what you are looking at so there is less mystery.
There are different types of divorces in Virginia. There are fault based, "no fault" based, contested and uncontested. There is too much to say about each of these types for one page so we have links to each page for you to review and research. After, if you have questions about your divorce or would like to schedule a free consultation with a lawyer, please fill out the Consultation Form, give us a call or send us a text. We are more than happy to answer your divorce questions or concerns.
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Our office is conveniently located in Chesapeake, Virginia. We are not far from Interstate 64 and accessible from all directions. Having this close proximity to the Chesapeake Courthouse allows us the advantage of being quickly available to appear in Court in Chesapeake.
Having practiced law in Virginia since 1998, Brian has had the opportunity to appear in all of the Courts in Chesapeake, Virginia. Whether it is in Juvenile & Domestic Relations Court, General District Court or Circuit Court, Brian has appeared before the Judges in the Courts and offers this perspective for our clients. For over twenty years, Brian has argued and tried cases involving child custody, visitation, accidents and injuries, divorces, support, traffic tickets, various criminal matters and many other matters. We believe that this experience brings an advantage to you in your case.
Divorce in Virginia
Contested and Uncontested Divorces
There are really only two types of divorces that exist - contested and uncontested. Here is the difference - a Separation Agreement or Property Settlement Agreement. In a nutshell, a Separation Agreement is a document that the parties (the divorcing folks) create and sign to resolve all of the issues in a divorce. Think of it as a contract to end the marriage. It handles everything from real estate to bills to support as well as custody and visitation. I will talk later about Separation Agreements in another post.
An uncontested divorce is one where the parties have entered into an Agreement so that there is nothing really for left for the Court to decide. At the final divorce hearing, the Judge simply enters the Final Divorce Decree and incorporates the terms of the Agreement into that Order. Easy. This is the best route for most people to go because it is faster, cheaper and does not leave the decision to a stranger who does not know anything about you and your family other than the evidence at trial.
A contested divorce means that there is no Agreement. This is one where the Court has to decide everything. If you can avoid this I strongly recommend that you do. It takes control away from you and gives it to the Court. Remember, the Court does not get to hear everything because there are rules of evidence and procedure that may limit what you get to present as well as what the Court can consider. Also, the other side is trying to put their best foot forward to get the best possible results. This can result in you getting less than what you need to survive.
There can be an uncontested divorce without a written Agreement...sort of. It is still technically contested. The parties can come to Court, sign off on the Divorce Decree and leave nothing really for the Court to decide. This does not happen that often and there still may be lengthy procedural hoops that you have to go through to get there.
An uncontested divorce can become contested. Even though there is an Agreement, there are some things that are never "final" in the eyes of Virginia law. Custody, visitation and child support are the main ones. These are never permanent because the Court is always looking out for the best interests of the child. What was good in 2008 may not be good in 2018. Additionally, child support belongs to the child so even if the parties agree on Monday to a support amount they can go back to Court on Friday depending on whether certain factors have been met. Again, a topic for another post.
So this is the nutshell version of Virginia divorces. As Virginia divorce attorneys we have run the gamut of the different types of divorce. As always, this is not designed to be specific to your case as each case is different and should be treated as such. This is NOT legal advice but something to consider when you speak with a divorce lawyer or family law lawyer. It is my belief that providing as much information as possible to our clients before the come in is always the best because a better educated client means that he or she can help us help them.
Feel free to contact us on our Contact Page, by phone at 757-454-2110, or our Texting Widget.
Brian A. Thomasson, P.L.C.
1108 Madison Plaza, Suite 203
Chesapeake, VA 23320
Blog Posts Regarding Divorce
We will be the first ones to tell you that you should not believe half of what your read on the Internet. When it comes to doing your own reseach on divorce, separation, custody, visitation, child support, or spousal support in Virginia we encourage you to use the Internet to get some foundations.
The problems are two-fold. First, you do not know who wrote the article/post. Even if it is on the page of a law firm in Virginia holding themselves out as divorce lawyers that does not mean a competent divorce lawyer wrote the article or even proofread the article. In fact, many firms outsource those articles. Here, we write our own articles/posts on various aspects of divorce, separation, custody, visitation, etc., and have them proofread by someone else in the office before they are posted. Second, each case is unique. There is no "one size fits all" divorce or articles on divorce. Each case should be approached on its own fact pattern and handled accordingly. Articles and posts should be designed to be generic and informative but not legal advice.
Feel free to read our posts before your free consultation and we are happy to go over any questions you have at that time. We invite educated questions. The more that our clients know the better we can help them achieve their goals.