Virginia Separation Attorneys

Top Rated Separation Attorneys Providing Guidance and Protecting Your Rights During Difficult Times. Serving Northern Virginia and Hampton Roads.

Why Choose Melone Hatley, P.C.?
  • Experienced, aggressive and caring separation and divorce lawyers
  • Highly Rated By Clients
  • Big Divorce Law Firm experience in a boutique setting
  • Client focused approach with one-on-one attention
  • Cost-effective approach
  • Payment plans available

Questions regarding separation? Contact our office today or schedule a free initial consultation.

Separation in Virginia

Clients often ask “how can I legally separate from my spouse?” The answer in Virginia is quite simple. Once you start sleeping separately from your spouse with the intent that the separation remain permanent, you are considered “legally” separated. There is no court filing or written agreement required in order to initiate a separation in Virginia. In order to pursue a divorce based on separation, you will need to be separated for 6 months and have a written agreement if you have no minor children, or you will need to be separated for one year if you have minor children.

Time spent living under the same roof can count towards your separation period. The earliest you can initiate a divorce is either 6 months or 1 year from the beginning of the separation period, otherwise the court does not have jurisdiction to grant a divorce.

Separation in the Same Household

Often, parties cannot afford to move into new residences right away. If they have a joint mortgage or lease obligation, neither party may be able to afford to move out. This can mean a portion of separation is spent living in the same household.

If you are still living under the same roof, you want to make clear your intent to remain separated from your spouse. This means buying separate groceries, splitting your financial obligations, and not attending events together.

Other Requirements for Divorce

For any divorce case in Virginia, one party has to have been a resident for at least 6 months prior to filing the case. If the other spouse has no connection to Virginia, the court may not have jurisdiction to determine any property or support issues between the parties. A knowledgeable family law attorney can advise you on where jurisdiction is proper for your case.

Our Services

The attorneys at Melone Hatley, PC can help with any of the following areas:

  • Uncontested Divorce 
  • Separation Agreements 
  • Contested Divorce 
  • Division of Property
  • Child Custody & Visitation 
  • Child Support 
  • Spousal Support

Support Issues During Separation

If spouses are living in the same household during their divorce case, a judge may be hesitant to award spousal or child support. If both spouses are contributing to joint expenses such as the mortgage, lease, car payments, utilities, childcare costs, or others the court can consider those payments to offset a support obligation. If you are in need of financial support, it’s best to speak with an attorney who can review your situation in detail and advise you of your options.

Custody During Separation

Just like with support, most judges are hesitant about entering custody or visitation orders while the parties are still living together. If one spouse has plans to move out of the home, the court may enter an order regarding visitation once that spouse leaves. Otherwise, both parents have an equal right to the children during the course of their separation.

Separation Agreements

If you and your spouse are able to come to an agreement regarding financial and property division, custody, support, and other terms for your separation, it’s best to have a written agreement as soon as possible. Once you have the terms of your agreement in writing, you have the ability to have the court enforce the terms of the agreement against your spouse if necessary. It’s best to have an attorney write your separation agreement so you can be sure all terms are included and enforceable.

If you are facing separation and divorce, contact our office today to schedule a free initial consultation with a Separation and Divorce Lawyer.

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  • So Easy To Talk To

    “I hired Rebecca Melone to assist my small business in developing a new contract. She was so easy to talk to, definitely not your stereotype attorney type. She was so down to earth and offered so many suggestions for my business. I was so impressed with her that I just decided to have her write up a new contract all together, which she did in record breaking speed. Whatever your legal issue is, I would recommend Rebecca Melone hands down.”

  • She Was Awesome

    “I was seeking for an attorney to help me with my child custody/support and Ms. Melone was great. Right from the beginning, she responded very promptly and professionally. She listened to everything I had to say and gave me great honest advice on all concerns I had. At the end everything turned out in my favor. She was awesome!”

  • Consummate Professional

    “Rebecca proved to be a consummate professional when handling my case, and minimized the damage so that I could move on after my mistake and get on with my life.”

  • Went Above And Beyond

    “Rebecca went above and beyond to help me with my case, not only that but she stayed level headed in every stressful situation we came across. She explained everything to me in terms that I could understand and kept me up to date on what was going on with my case.”

  • Painless and Stress-free

    “I hired Rebecca for my divorce. Rebecca was very informative, professional and responded to any of my questions in a prompt manner. I was very impressed by the services rendered. My divorce process was as painless and stress-free as could be. I Would definitely recommend her to anyone I know.”

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    “Rebecca Melone was a great choice for handling our divorce. Reasonable and clear-cut fee and responsive service. I’ll definitely use her in the future should the need arise. Thanks Rebecca!”

  • Top Quality Legal Service

    “I received top quality legal service and advice from Rebecca and her team. She was extremely knowledgeable and experienced in all matters as the case evolved. I felt like I was in great hands the entire time. The case was settled with a positive outcome. I would highly recommend this law firm!”

  • Gets The Job Done

    “Very prompt in answering calls and replying to email, found her competitively priced and overall gets the job done in a professional and time-sensitive way.”

  • Very Prepared

    “We were very prepared the day of the hearing and she stayed with me for several hours until we successfully completed the process and got all the necessary paperwork done.”

  • Easy To Work With

    “Rebecca is very knowledgeable and helped me with a cross state custody case. She is very easy to work with, got things done quickly, and helped me get the results I was looking for.”


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