A zeptosecond is a fantastically short time. It is a sextillionth of a second. We don’t really care how long it is though; we just love the name. Zeptosecond. You will need a whole lotta zeptoseconds to wait for an uncontested divorce to be final in Virginia. We are not being coy, either, because the exact timing of a Virginia divorce is in the hands of a judge; we cannot influence the court calendar.
Oh, You Want a Quick Answer?
For the fastest (and loosest) possible answer, we can say you will have your uncontested divorce — with no complicating issues (child support, spousal support, child physical and legal custody, visitation schedule) to be handled by a judge — in anywhere between 30 and 90 days after you file the paperwork with the court holding jurisdiction (usually the circuit court of the city in which at least one of you resides).
This precludes the six months or 12 months you and your wife were separated, before filing. This also precludes those pesky parenthetical details we brushed aside as “complicating issues.”
Complicating Issues in Uncontested Divorce: Custody, Money, Property
As soon as you bring your children into the picture, you will have a more complicated divorce. It can still be uncontested, but you have to invest some time and brainpower into determining what is best for the children. If you do not do that, the state of Virginia will, and you may not like the answers.
So work with your wife and sign a separation agreement (or property settlement agreement) to iron out the nitty-gritty details before approaching the court system:
- Who gets the kids?
- Who makes legal, educational and medical decisions for the kids?
- Who gets the BMW, ATV, CDs, PCs, RV, VCR, TV, DVDs, and J.R.R. Tolkien books?
- Who gets the 2BR, 2½BA, HW floors, 2C-A, full B, C/H and A/C house?
- Who gets the savings account, checking account, Certificates of Deposits (the nonmusical kind of CD), money market account, retirement account, and that no-account no good brother asleep on the couch?
- How often and on what days will the non-custodial parent see the kids?
Depositions Save Time
Uncontested divorces in Virginia are already on a fast-track to resolution. For the past five years, Virginia has given unhappy spouses a way to make divorce final without appearing in court, by using a deposition (a quick snapshot summary of your case, in writing). A third-party witness is also needed, but the court clerk handles the paperwork, and a few weeks later (the timing is all up to the judge), you get your divorce decree.
To ensure smooth processing, you and your spouse need to make certain everything meets Virginia’s legal standards. The safest way to keep things moving is by using a competent attorney, even if you and your wife have no conflicts to resolve.
An Intro to the Friday Divorce Docket
In Virginia most circuit courts have a Friday Divorce Docket such as the one in Virginia Beach, where the court packs into one day all the cases requiring more than just a perfunctory signature. If you have an issue that the two of you cannot get past, your attorney makes an application for an hour of the judge’s time to iron out the particular stumbling block. It is a streamlined way to get past issues that may not have resolved themselves through mediation.
Simply filing the paperwork for an appearance at the Friday Divorce Docket does not give you a guaranteed decree date. Your attorney can search for an available slot; otherwise, you have to wait for the court clerk to schedule your hour. This could be weeks or even months in the future.
I Divorce You, I Divorce You, I Divorce You
We get it; you, and possibly your wife, want your uncontested divorce done quickly. What should be a picosecond feels like a zettasecond (listen, we really, really love these words; we just mean what you wish were a trillionth of a second seems to drag on for 31 trillion years). Most divorcing couples feel strong (hostile) emotions, but with uncontested divorce, the emotions could be impatience, anticipation, and anxiety that the process is not instantaneous.
Virginia law views divorce as a big deal; you should, too. If people in Virginia could truly get divorced in the largely outlawed way of some countries, by saying “I divorce you, I divorce you, I divorce you,” our beautiful state would deteriorate into a state of chaos. Even an uncontested divorce should proceed slowly enough to allow real thought in every action, real contemplation of every step.
Filing an Uncontested Divorce Yourself?
Filing an uncontested divorce and getting it right are challenges. The Virginia Beach Circuit Court put together a “helpful” divorce manual for uncontested divorce. We are lawyers and we have a hard time following the thing. The very first line reminds Virginians that the responsibility to research the process and get it right falls to them, not the court:
“If you are representing yourself you must research the requirements for the content of the complaint, divorce decree, and any other orders or pleadings that may be required, and draft and prepare them yourself. The court does not provide any form pleadings or orders, and court staff cannot give you advice on these issues.”
The court is not biased for or against attorneys; yet the court is essentially telling you, as a Virginian, that trying to do this yourself is not wise. A single slip-up could send you right back to the end of the line in the process.
Call the ONLY Family Law Firm in Virginia Representing Men Only
Call The Firm for Men at 757-383-9184, or contact us. We will be happy to explain the process, timeline, and factors affecting how long your uncontested Virginia divorce could take. We will leave the yottaseconds and such to other experts; law is our specialty, and we do it very well.