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Virginia Divorce Forms
This is a list of the most commonly filed divorce forms for the state of Virginia. Following the list is a brief summary of each form and its purpose. This list of forms is not exhaustive and not all forms listed are required for every divorce. Due to unique case situations and special divorce filing procedures in Virginia, certain forms may or may not be required by the Virginia courts.
Monthly Income and Expense Statement
Virginia has no state-approved form for making a financial declaration in the case when financial issues become an issue. The courts often use a simple form showing the income and expenses of the parties.
Divorcing couples with children must complete one of two child support worksheets:
> The Sole Custody Child Support Guidelines Worksheet, which is used when the custodial parent has sole physical custody of the child(ren), or
> The Shared custody Child Support Guidelines Worksheet, which is used when the parents share physical custody.
Each of these forms comes with a set of instructions for computing child support based on the finances of the parents.
Bill of Complaint for Divorce
This form starts the divorce action.
Divorce Case Cover Sheet
Some courts require that both parties file a Divorce Case Cover Sheet, when a Bill of Complaint or Cross-Bill of Complaint is filed in any divorce action. The Divorce Case Cover Sheet identifies the attorneys and the likely trajectory of the case. A Cross-Bill is sometimes filed when the Defendant contests the divorce and wishes to make his or her allegations as to the facts of the case.
Acceptance/Waiver of Service of Process and Waiver of Future Service of Process and Notice, Form, CC-1406
The Defendant signs the Acceptance/Waiver Form when he or she waives formal service of process. Signing the Acceptance/Waiver of Service happens when the Defendant agrees to the divorce and decides not to contest it.
Acceptance of Service and Affidavit of Service
When the Defendant is formally served the divorce papers, he or she receives the Bill of Complaint with an attached Subpoena in Chancery, which is a summons. The Defendant then signs an Acceptance of Service, a one-page form that is notarized and returned to the Complaint. When he is served by a Process Server or Sheriff, that party returns an Affidavit of Service, which certifies that the divorce papers were delivered to the Defendant.
Request for Order of Publication
The request for an Order of Publication is filed with one of the following affidavits, each of which must be notarized:
> Affidavit in Support of Order of Publication, (diligent efforts to locate; location unknown; no attempt to serve), which is used when the location of the Defendant is unknown, despite diligent effort to locate him or her.
> Affidavit in Support of Order of Publication, (non-resident of Virginia), which is used when the Defendant is not a resident of Virginia and his or her last known address outside Virginia is the only address known.
> Affidavit in Support of Order of Publication, (Virginia resident; location unknown; service attempted), which is used when the party lives in Virginia at an unknown location and service has been unsuccessfully attempted.
Affidavit for Service by Publication
This affidavit, which must be notarized and filed by the Complaint, certified the efforts that have been made to serve the missing spouse who cannot or will not be located.
Order of Publication
This is a court order that permits the Plaintiff to publish notice of the divorce action in a newspaper and thus effectively serve the Defendant.
When the Defendant consents to he divorce, he or she can sign this one-page, one sentence statement that he or she does not "object to the granting of the relief requested."
Request for Ore Tenus Hearing
The Plaintiff may file a Request for Ore Tenus Hearing 1) if the Defendant, having filed an Answer, agrees to the action, or 2) if he or she fails to respond within 21 days of receipt of the Bill of Complaint. In cases of agreement, the Property Settlement Agreement and Final Decree may be attached to the Request. A copy of the Request must be served on the Defendant.
Vital Statistics Form VS-4
The Vital Statistics Form records the divorce the Virginia Department of Health, Division of Vital Records.
Decree of Reference
When a divorce action goes before a Commissioner, the Plaintiff must file a Decree of Reference, which is signed by a Judge. The Decree of Reference refers the action and attests that the case "has matured" and that all proper procedures have been followed.
The final decree of divorce comes in one of two forms, as follows:
> The Final Decree of Divorce (Simple), which is used when there are no children and the final property settlement is "ratified, affirmed and incorporated" into the decree, or
> The Final Decree of Divorce with Child/Spousal Support, which is used when the are child and spousal support provisions and the final property agreement is "ratified, affirmed and incorporated" into the decree.
The Virginia court gives primary consideration to the best interests of the child in determining custody. The court assures minor children of frequent and continuing contact with both parents, when appropriate, and encourages parents to share in the responsibilities of rearing their children. In determining the best interests of a child, the court considers a variety of factors including the age, physical and mental condition of the child as well as each parent, the needs of the child, the role of each parent and the rapport of each parent, and the "willingness and demonstrated ability of each parent to maintain a close and continuing relationship with the child, and the ability of each parent to cooperate in and resolve disputes regarding matters affecting the child," family abuse, and "other factors as the court deems necessary and proper to the determination."
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