It can be an emotionally charged time when a marriage deteriorates. At the Law Office of Deborah N. Arthur, we do everything possible to make the process as easy and painless as possible. We listen and discuss your various options with the goal of tailoring your case to your individual circumstances and needs. We consider mediation and negotiation of the issues without litigation as our first level of action.

If all else fails, there are various grounds for filing a divorce. These grounds include cruelty and reasonable apprehension of bodily harm, abandonment and desertion, adultery, felony conviction, or a period of separation.

In order to file for divorce based on cruelty, there must be a danger to life, limb, or health that renders cohabitation unsafe. Angry words from your spouse are not enough. Generally, one act of cruelty is also not enough to file based on cruelty.

In order to file for divorce based on abandonment or desertion, one spouse must leave the marital home with the intent to desert and end the marriage. However, certain actions may constitute constructive desertion, without having left the marital home.

You may file for divorce based on living separate and apart without cohabitation for at least one year. There must be an intent to remain permanently separated during the entire year by at least one of the spouses. That intent must be proven by testimony or deposition. If you do not have any children, then the waiting period of separation is six months if you and your spouse enter into a property settlement agreement or separation agreement during the six months of separation.

Contact the Law Office of Deborah N. Arthur today by calling 703-278-2028 or sending us an email online. From our office in Annandale, we help people throughout Northern Virginia.