Legal Question in Family Law in Virginia

I would like for someone to look over this information and if someone can please explain to me if this mean that me and my wife are legal Separate because the way I read it I am saying no and she is telling people that it is legal. I am going to type it ford for word.

In the Circuit Court of Culpeper County

Nicole B. Deane Plaintiff VS John Harris Deane Defendant


Your Plaintiff respectfully represents as follow:

1. Nicole B. Deane and John Harris Deane were married on the 1st day of April,1994 in Louisa County, Commonwealth of Virginia.

2. There were three children born of this marriage, to wit: Michael L. Deane, born October 24,1994, Shawn M. Deane, born October 28,1997 and Jamie H.O. Deane born September 1,2000

3. Plaintiff and Defendant last cohabited together in Culpeper County, Commonwealth of Virginia.

4. Plaintiff and Defendant are domiciled in and have been bona fide residents of the Commonwealth of Virginia for more then six months next preceding the commencement of this suit.

5.Both Plaintiff and Defendant are of sound mind, are over the age of 18 years and neither of them is in the military service of the United States.

6. Defendant has a violent temper, a fact which Plaintiff did not learn until sometime after she and Defendant were married. Defendant has on numerous occasions, without provocation, been guilty of extreme cruel treatment toward Plaintiff; has assaulted her both physically and verbally on numerous occasions so as to cause her great mental anguish, physically and verbally on numerous occasions so as to cause her great mental anguish, physical injury, apprehension of future serious bodily harm to herself, and fear for her and her children's safety. In October 2012,the Defendant was arrested for assault and battery on your plaintiff. On November 20,2012, the judge of the juvenile & Domestic Relation District Court of Culpeper County, Virginia found the evidence sufficient fir a finding of guilt of assault and battery of the Plaintiff, but deferred a finding of guilt and placed the Defendant on two year probation. The Defendant was to complete the violence intervention program as directed by his probation officer and was order to have no violent contact with the victim or the victim's family. Subsequent to the above Court's contact with the victim or the victim's family. Subsequent to the above Court's ruling, Defendant's extreme cruel treatment towards Plaintiff and demeaning behavior has continued to escalate. The Defendant and the parties' oldest child Michael got into a violent argument over money that Defendant owned Michael. Your Plaintiff had to intervene between the Defendant the parties' son to prevent physical violence. On February 14,2013 as your Plaintiff was attempting to leave to go to work, the Defendant grabbed her shoulders, squeezing her shoulders and would not release Plaintiff even after repeated requested by Plaintiff to be released. Defendant was insistent on speaking to Plaintiff and would not release her. On March 13,2013, Defendant told Plaintiff that she needed to pack her stuff and move out.

7. By such conduct Defendant has deserted Plaintiff by putting her in such fear for her health and safety and the safety of her children that it is impossible for her to live with him.

8. Plaintiff has repeatedly asked Defendant to leave the marital home, but the Defendant refuses to leave the marital home. The marital home is titled solely in your Plaintiff's name and the Plaintiff solely liable for the debt on the marital home. Your Plaintiff and her children have no other place to live other than the marital home.

9. Since the events of February 14, 2013, your Plaintiff has lived separate and apart under the same roof from Defendant. Defendant has continued to bother and harass Plaintiff to the extent that she has undergone severe mental anguish and emotional distress.

10. Plaintiff believes that reconciliation is highly improbable.

11. It is in the best interest of the minor children of the parties that their best interests require that the responsibility for their care and custody be granted to the Plaintiff.

12.defendant was recently fired from his job, cause unknown. However, Defendant has a history of being unable to hold a job. The Plaintiff is gainfully employed. The earning capacity, obligations, and financial resources of the parties, considered together with the respective education and training of each, require that Defendant be order to pay for the maintenance and support of the minor children of the marriage of the parties.

13. The pursuant to 20-107.3 of the Code of Virginia, 1950, as amended, the plaintiff respectfully request the court determine legal title as between the parties as to the ownership and value of all real and personal property of the parties, and classify such property into separate and marital property categories. The Plaintiff also respectfully request the Court determine the debts as between the parties and classify such debts into separate and marital property categories.

WHEREFORE, Plaintiff prays that she be awarded a divorce a mensa et thore from Defendant on grounds of cruelty or constructive desertion; that she be granted leave to merge said divorce a mensa rt thore into a divorce a vinculo matrimonii at the end of the statutory period as provided by law; that she be awarded custody during the pendency of this suit of the children born of this marriage; that she be awarded money for the maintenance and support the parties' children during the pendency of this suit; that she be awarded permanent custody of the children born of this marriage; that she be awarded permanent maintenance and support for said children; she be awarded exclusive use of the martial home during the pendency of this suit; that the Court determine the property rights of the parties; that this Court issue an order enjoining and restraining Defendant from interfering with, molesting or harassing Plaintiff and the children born of this marriage; that Plaintiff be awarded her attorney's fees and cost expended in this suit; and for such general and further relief as the Court may find warranted.


The question I have on this information is if this is a legal separation and do I have the right to ask her if I can borrow something from her like a vehicle to drive because mine is being repo. Also Can I ask her to see if she will put all cell phones on one bill. I am trying to understand my rights with her on this matter. So if someone can explain this to me so I can have a clear pitcher on this matter. What I I really need is to find out these question that I am asking because I think I went over the line and I just want to make sure. She is not letting me do anything she wont let me use nothing and she will not give me money or put anything on her bill like the cell phones.

Thank you for your responds back

Asked on 6/10/13, 1:22 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

Michael Hendrickson Law Office Michael E. Hendrickson

The referenced document is merely a Complaint, i.e., the initial pleading filed

by the plaintiff in initiating a divorce and in no way represents either a binding legal contract between the parties such as would be exemplified by the standard Legal Separation and Property Settlement Agreement nor an order of the court which they are legally obligated to observe. As such, it is merely a document

which appears to encompass the plantiff's hopes and wishes for the way that she hopes that the court will eventually rule on the various issues and allegations which she's raised in this Complaint but which most definitely does not confer the status of a "legal separation" upon the parties to this pending matter.

It would also seem appropos to note that this Complaint is a poorly drafted

pleading (in my opinion) and obviously the work of one representing herself without an attorney (pro se), but, nevertheless, given the charges and allegations referenced, I would recommend that the defendant is this matter retain a Virginia attorney who is knowledgeable and experienced in the domestic relations laws of the Commonwealth and who should be able to provide the defendant with valuable advice as to how he should best proceed as this divorce matter goes forward.

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Answered on 6/10/13, 2:45 pm

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