Divorce is a legal process carried out in court

The only grounds for divorce is that your marriage has broken down irretrievably and this needs to be proved by establishing the existence of one of these five circumstances:

  • The Respondent (the person who is served the divorce proceedings) has committed adultery making it impossible for the Petitioner (the person who starts the divorce) to carry on living with the Respondent.
  • The Respondent has behaved in a way that means it’s no longer reasonable to expect the Petitioner to live with them.
  • The Respondent has deserted the Petitioner for a continuous period of at least 2 years immediately before the divorce proceedings began.
  • The couple has lived apart for a continuous period of at least 2 years immediately before the divorce proceedings began and the Respondent has given their consent for a decree to be granted.
  • The couple has lived apart for a continuous period of at least 5 years immediately before the divorce proceedings began.

When it comes to a divorce proceedings there are 3 key things to bear in mind:

  1. The length of the process will vary from case to case but you cannot issue a petition for divorce unless you have been married for more than a year.
  2. If the divorce is not defended, you will not have to attend court.
  3. At the end of the divorce procedure, if the court decides you are entitled to a divorce, you will need to apply for legal confirmation (known as the Decree Absolute).

Update

The Divorce, Dissolution and Separation Bill has received Royal Assent.  This means that separating couples will no longer need to assign blame in order to divorce before being separated for two years.  It is expected that this rule change will come into affect in 2021.  Our specialist lawyers in our family team can provide you with more information in relation to this and how it may affect your circumstances.

 “The service and advice I received throughout my divorce has been of the highest standard. You’ve got the patience of a saint considering the performance of the ex!”

If you would like to arrange a call or a meeting to discuss a potential divorce in total confidence please email us at [email protected] or call us on 020 8866 1820.

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