It is commonplace for a couple to purchase or adopt a pet during their marriage. That is all well and good, but what happens when the parties separate and eventually divorce?
For the longest time, this was one of the must frustratingly unanswerable questions in family law. If an engagement is broken off before a marriage is consummated, the law of divorce is completely inapplicable to the parties, and so concepts of marital property and separate property would not apply. Complicating matters, there is a law in Virginia known as the "heart balm statute" that says that one party cannot sue another for breaching a "promise to marry." With essentially no direction from the higher courts in the Commonwealth, the law surrounding retention or return of engagement rings varied wildly (if it existed at all) from county to county. Some judges ruled that the courts were powerless to return the ring, some ruled that it must be returned, and some ruled that its return was dependent upon the reasons for the termination of the engagement.
If you find yourself involved in a family law dispute, whether it is over divorce, custody, spousal or child support, or any other related issue, the Internet - social media in particular - can be your worst enemy. If your past or present conduct, activities, interests, attitude, social interactions, physical condition, travel, or beliefs are remotely relevant to the matter at issue, you can rest assured that your adversaries are mining the Internet for any ammunition to use against you. The following are some "dos and don'ts" for your use of the Internet and social media, whether you are currently embroiled in a family law case or you are concerned that you might someday be:
Virginia Code §10-107.3(E) mandates the Court to consider both monetary and nonmonetary contributions performed by each spouse during the marriage when dividing the parties marital assets and debts. The following is a list of some of the nonmonetary contributions you may have made during the marriage: