Getting the right advice
Divorce or separation can be a very difficult and emotional time. Trying to access the impact that such a change will have on your life, children, finance and property can be very overwhelming.
We deal with complex and high value divorce and separation arrangements, offering advice on the consequences for family business, property, trusts, children of the family, inheritance and more. We recognise that the process of divorce/separation is emotionally challenging, so we aim where possible to reach an agreement without the need for court proceedings through mediation.
If an amicable solution cannot be reached, we will fight your corner and assist you in seeking the court’s help.
THE DIVORCE PROCESS
- Divorce proceedings can only start if the couple have been married for a year.
- Your marriage has irretrievably broken down. This is the only ground for divorce.
- At least one of the parties to the marriage must be living in England and Wales or be habitually resident when the divorce process begins.
- Your marriage must be legally recognised in England and Wales.
- Filling the Divorce Application – To begin divorce proceedings in England & Wales you will need to submit either a single or joint divorce application. This is submitted via an online portal.
- Issuing your Application– Upon reviewing your application, the court will issue your application provided that the above requirements have been met. Following the issue of your application a minimum period of 20 weeks is triggered between the start of proceedings and application for conditional order. This provides couples a period of reflection about their decision and also gives them the opportunity to discuss any outstanding issues and reach any agreements where possible.
- Acknowledgement of Service – In cases where a sole divorce application is filed, your spouse will be served with the issued divorce application by the relevant court and must reply within 14 days to confirm their position. This is known as an ‘acknowledgement of service’ form.
- Conditional Order – Once the 20-week period has lapsed, you can file an application for a conditional order. This is a document that confirms that the court does not see any reason why you cannot end the marriage or civil partnership as you meet all the requirements.
- Final Order – Once the court grant a Conditional Order, you will then need to wait a further period of 6 weeks and 1 day (43 days) before you can apply for a Final Order. When the court issues your final order, your marriage officially comes to an end.
Q: I am in a civil partnership, how to I apply for dissolution?
- You can end your civil partnership in England & Wales if all of the following are true:
- you’ve been in civil partnership for over a year
- your relationship has permanently broken down
- your civil partnership is legally recognised in England & Wales (including same-sex marriage)
- Either you or your civil partner is habitually resident in England & Wales
Q: How much is the court fee for divorce/dissolution?
A: The court fee for filing a divorce/dissolution application is £593. This is paid at the time of submitting the application. The court can make exemptions for applicants with low income.
Q: I do not agree to my divorce/dissolution, can I contest it?
A: As part of the recent changes to the Divorce, Dissolution and Separation Act 2020 which introduced ‘no fault’ divorce for the first time in England and Wales which has removed the need for applicants to cite a reason for divorce. Within the apportionment of ‘blame’, the need to defend a divorce has also been removed. However, there are exceptional circumstances where a court might allow this including issues regarding jurisdiction.
If you would like more information about the divorce process, we offer fixed fee initial consultations. Please contact us firstname.lastname@example.org