Property Division & Spousal Support Lawyers in Roanoke, VA
Bring Your Case to a Long-Established Family Law Firm
The division of marital property as well as spousal support are two issues that must be addressed and resolved in a Virginia divorce. Because they deal with finances that can greatly impact your future, they are often contested and can become highly-charged. If you and your spouse can come to an agreement between yourselves on these matters, you can submit your agreement to the court for approval. However, where you cannot reach such an agreement through negotiation or mediation, it will be left up to the court to decide these issues based on Virginia law and precedent.
To understand how Virginia law affects these issues and how your unique case is impacted, we strongly urge you to turn to Magee Goldstein Lasky & Sayers, PC. Our firm has a strong background in family law and financial matters that can benefit you in analyzing and preparing your case for the resolution of these crucial issues. We can provide answers to your questions and experienced guidance as we help you navigate through these divorce issues. Our priority is to ensure that your legal rights and assets are protected and that the outcome is one that will secure your future.
How Is Marital Property Division Determined in Virginia?
Virginia follows the “equitable distribution” rule in the determination of marital property and debt division in a divorce. This means that judges will review a couple’s entire financial scene and many contributing factors to that scene in their determination. They will then divide property and debts in a manner that is as fair and just as possible. This does not automatically mean an even split but one that takes into consideration all of the pertinent factors to the particular case before them.
In a divorce, only marital property is split. This is generally property that was acquired by the couple after the marriage took place. Separate property is any property that was owned by an individual prior to the wedding or was given as an inheritance or gift to one spouse only during the marriage. However, if this separate property is then used by both spouses during the marriage, it will likely be regarded by the court as marital property.
Courts will look at many factors in making a decision on this issue. These factors can include:
- What each spouse contributed to the marriage in both monetary and non-monetary terms
- How long the marriage lasted
- The ages and health of the spouses
- Whether any marital misconduct on the part of a spouse led to the divorce and whether this impacted financial/property conditions
- The circumstances of how assets/property were acquired
- Tax consequences
- Any other factors relevant to the case
In a Virginia divorce, this matter becomes part of the divorce settlement and decree. After the order is made by the court, you and your spouse must then handle the distribution according to that order.
Spousal Support in a Virginia Divorce
Spousal support, also known as alimony, is a payment that one spouse makes to the other while a divorce is pending or on a temporary or more permanent basis after the divorce has been finalized. If you wish to receive this support, you must request it from the court and provide evidence of financial need. Its purpose is to provide financial support to pay your bills and to maintain a lifestyle as close to the one you enjoyed during the marriage as possible.
Different types of spousal support may be granted. Aside from temporary support while the divorce is ongoing, post-divorce rehabilitative support may be ordered. This is commonly awarded to a spouse who remained at home to raise children or who otherwise supported their spouse’s education, training, and career. Rehabilitative support is designed to provide this spouse with the financial resources to obtain the education or training needed to become self-supporting.
Permanent spousal support is rarely awarded by Virginia courts. However, it may be awarded in cases where a spouse is disabled or otherwise unable to become financially independent.
As in property division, courts will look at many factors when determining whether to award spousal support. These can range from the length of the marriage to spousal financial needs, resources, ages, health, earning ability, how marital property was divided, and more. Courts may also consider any marital misconduct that might justify the award or the denial of a spousal support award.
Serving Your Best Interests in Divorce-Related Interests
Marital property division and spousal support can be complicated issues. Courts will look at many aspects of the marriage to determine these issues. At Magee Goldstein Lasky & Sayers, PC, we understand how important these matters can be to your financial security and prosperity. Our firm is here to help you pursue your legal objectives in these matters and to strongly advocate for you throughout the divorce process for the best possible outcome.
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