DAVIS V. DAVIS, 1999 VA. CIR. LEXIS 680, 1999 WL 378760 (VA. CIR. CT. FEB. 10, 1999)
Plaintiff wife filed a bill of complaint for divorce from defendant husband and equitable distribution of their property, pursuant to Va. Code §§ 20-91 and 20-107.3, while defendant filed a cross-bill for divorce on fault grounds and for adoption of a premarital agreement that he alleged that the parties had entered into, pursuant to Va. Code § 20-149.
Prior to getting married, plaintiff wife and defendant husband discussed entering into a premarital agreement. She prepared a document and gave it to defendant a week before they married. After they married, separated, and plaintiff filed for divorce and equitable distribution of property, pursuant to Va. Code §§ 20-91 and 20-107.3, she could not recall if they had actually signed an agreement. Defendant insisted they had, in fact, signed the agreement and property should be distributed thereunder; however, he was unable to produce any evidence of a signed agreement. He also filed a cross-bill for divorce on fault grounds. Following a hearing, plaintiff moved for a no-fault divorce and defendant agreed. In a letter opinion, the court granted her a no-fault divorce, the parties having been separated for over a year. The court also ruled that defendant had the burden of proving an agreement and that the evidence failed to show that they had entered into a valid agreement under Va. Code § 20-149, which required a signed writing. Accordingly, the court classified the assets and liabilities of the parties as separate or marital. The marital property and debt were divided equally.
A letter opinion was issued (a) granting plaintiff a no-fault divorce, by agreement, due to the parties having lived separate and apart for over a year; (b) ruling that the parties had not entered into a valid premarital agreement, defendant having failed to present evidence of a written agreement signed by both parties; (c) classifying property as separate or marital; and (d) dividing marital property and debts equally.
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