About Melannie Dino

Melannie Dino is a senior associate attorney at Livesay & Myers, P.C., practicing exclusively family law. Ms. Dino works in the firm’s offices in Manassas and Leesburg, and represents clients in Loudoun County, Prince William County and all across Northern Virginia.

Here are the most recent posts by this author:


How to Prepare for a Custody Battle

Posted on February 5th, 2018, by Melannie Dino in Custody, Family Law. No Comments

You have accepted the fact that your marriage is ending and divorce is inevitable. But you want to do everything you can to ensure you have as much time with your children as possible. How can you best prepare yourself for a battle over custody?

Improve Your Communication. You need to do your part to open the lines of communication between you and your spouse regarding your children. Find a way to talk with your spouse about your children’s needs and desires. The communication must be positive and productive. You want to demonstrate that you will foster a relationship between your children and your spouse. You must show that you can co-parent with your spouse. Your emails, instant messages, text messages to your spouse or to others about your spouse must not be riddled with curse words, insults, or other damaging banter. Such … Read More »


Three Tips for Keeping Costs Down in Your Divorce

Posted on November 13th, 2017, by Melannie Dino in Divorce, Family Law. No Comments

Contested divorce cases can be extremely costly. The costs are often driven up by an aggressive opposing party or counsel, or through multiple actions being heard at the same time, sometimes even in different courts. If you find yourself in such a situation, you may not be able to completely prevent costs from rising. However, there are some steps you can take to help keep your attorney’s fees as low as possible. Here are three tips for keeping costs down in your divorce:

Consolidate communications with your attorney. Communication between you and your attorney will be essential in your divorce. However, in many cases a client will both telephone and email their attorney several times in the course of a day. Costs can add up quickly if you do not do your part to make each communication efficient and meaningful. If time permits, … Read More »


Do You Need an Attorney for a Separation Agreement?

Posted on November 8th, 2017, by Melannie Dino in Family Law. No Comments

In today’s world, there is a wealth of information available over the internet. People often turn to the web when trying to find a cheaper method for preparing a separation agreement or “property settlement agreement.” Agreement templates are available online for a nominal fee, which makes them very attractive to many divorcing couples.

However, each divorce case is unique. Forms found online are general and may not adequately address your needs. You may find that the form you chose to use is tailored for a different jurisdiction or even a different state than where you live. The form may not reference the correct applicable law, or may fail to include provisions that are vital in your case.

Some choose to use a friend or co-worker’s previously drafted agreement and try to make that agreement work for their own case. However, the facts … Read More »


Separate Maintenance in Virginia

Posted on October 30th, 2017, by Melannie Dino in Family Law. No Comments

Virginia law allows a married person who is separated from their spouse to file a petition for “separate maintenance.” Separate maintenance is distinct from spousal support, and may be an attractive option to individuals who require support from their spouse but who do not want or cannot yet file for a divorce.

Separate maintenance initiated as a common-law remedy. It was developed to provide an equitable remedy when there was not an adequate legal remedy. Black’s Law dictionary defines separate maintenance as “money paid by one married person to another for support if they are no longer living together as husband and wife.” At common law in Virginia, there were essentially four elements to a case for separate maintenance: (1) the party from whom support is sought must be at fault, (2) the party seeking support and maintenance must be without fault, (3) … Read More »


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