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If there are children from the marriage, you must be separated a minimum of one year before you may file for divorce.You do not file a separation agreement with the Court.
Whether or not your spouse responds, you and your corroborative witness will have to appear before a Commissioner in Chancery who will conduct a hearing scheduled by the clerk of the Circuit Court.
After you file your papers, your spouse has 21 days (if your spouse lives in Virginia), to respond to your request for divorce (known as a Complaint).
If your spouse fails to respond, the court will proceed with the divorce so long as service of process has been completed correctly.
This will give you an indication on how to proceed with the divorce.
The law limits the authority of the court to grant divorces (known as a question of jurisdiction-can this court hear this divorce? The law also dictates when the court has jurisdiction over a divorce proceeding.This section explains the subject of divorce law in Virginia.