- Page Contents
- Specialist Divorce Lawyers
- When Can I Get A Divorce?
- Divorce When Spouse's Whereabouts Are Unknown
- Grounds For Divorce
- Court Procedure For Divorce
- Divorce Financial Settlement
- Financial Settlement After Overseas Divorce
- How Can We Help?
- How Much We Charge?
- How Much Is The Court Fee?
You can apply to get a divorce in England & Wales to end your marriage if your relationship with your spouse has broken down irretrievably. Divorce is a legal process to end marriage between husband and wife after the relationship between them has broken down irretrievably. You can get a divorce in England & Wales only after you have been married for at least one year and you have valid grounds for seeking divorce. You can apply for divorce online or by completing a divorce application form D8 with valid grounds for divorce. You can also get a divorce in England & Wales if you do not know the whereabout of your husband or wife.
As specialist divorce lawyers in London, we can help you get a divorce on fixed fee basis. Our highly experienced divorce solicitors will:
- assess your personal circumstances and check if you can get a divorce.
- advise you on steps you have to take before you file for a divorce and guide you on how to apply for divorce.
As one of the best divorce lawyers in London, our divorce solicitors have wealth of knowledge and extensive experience of dealing with divorce matters.
Thinking of getting a divorce in England & Wales? Get divorce advice and representations from our fixed fee divorce lawyers in London, Manchester and Birmingham. Our team of fixed fee divorce laywers will provide you fast, friendly, reliable and fixed fee legal services for your divorce and financial settlement matters. Ask a question to our expert divorce lawyers for free divorce advice or schedule an appointment with one of our divorce lawyers for detailed divorce advice service.
You can get a divorce in England & Wales if all of the following are true:
- you’ve been married for over a year
- your relationship has permanently broken down
- your marriage is legally recognised in England & Wales (including same-sex marriage)
- Either you or your husband/wife is habitually resident in England & Wales
In some circumstances a divorce may not be suitable or applicable. Depending on the circumstances of your case, it may be more appropriate to annual your marriage or legally separate. An annulment or legal separation can be applied for within the first year of marriage.
You can still get a divorce in England & Wales if your husband or wife is missing. Our divorce lawyers will help you with the procedures to follow where you do not know the whereabout of your husband or wife. The divorce process will take longer than normal in cases where the whereabouts of the Respondent are unknown.
You can apply for a divorce on the grounds that your marriage has broken down irretrievably and cannot be saved. This means that either one or both of you feel that you cannot stay married to each other. Either of you may apply to the divorce court in England and Wales for the marriage to be dissolved as long as you have been married for one year at least and that one of you has been a resident here for the year before your divorce petition is made. The application to the divorce court is called a Petition and the spouse who files (sends) the Petition is called the Petitioner. The other spouse is then called the Respondent.
To file for your divorce you’ll need to give one or more of the following 5 reasons (also known as ‘facts’) due to which your marriage has brokden down irretrievably:
Adultery can be a valid reason for breaking down of marriage irretriebly and thus a valid reason for getting a divorce from your spouse. Adultery means your husband or wife had sexual intercourse with someone else of the opposite sex (committed adultery) and you find it intolerable to live with him or her. In most cases, you prove adultery by your husband or wife admitting adultery. If not, you will need to speak to your divorce solicitor as to how you can prove adultery of your spouse. If you carry on living with your husband or wife for more than 6 months after you find out about the adultery, you will generally not be able to use this as a valid reason for divorce unless the adultery is continuing.
Unreasonable behaviour of the Respondent is very common reason for getting a divorce by most divorce petitioners in divorce matters. Unreasonable behaviour means that your husband or wife has behaved in such a way that you cannot reasonably be expected to live with him or her and as a result of such unreasonable behaviour of your spouse your marriage has broken down irretrivably. This covers all sorts of bad behaviour. You need to think about the main things that have made your husband or wife difficult to live with. These are summed up in the divorce petition (the application for divorce) in a few short paragraphs. As with adultery, you cannot rely on single event of unreasonable behaviour that took place more than 6 months before you file your divorce petition, if you have lived together since then.
The examples of unreasonable behaviour could include:
- physical violence;
- verbal abuse, such as insults or threats;
- drunkenness or drug-taking;
- refusing to pay towards shared living expenses.
Desertion Of The Petitioner By The Respondent
The petitioner can apply for divorce on the grounds that the Respondent deserted the petitioner more than 2 years ago and the marriage has broken down irretrievably. Desertion means leaving your husband or wife without his or her agreement and without good reason.
2 Years Separation And Respondent Consenting To Divorce
You can also apply for divorce on the grounds that you have lived separately for more than two years and your husband or wife (the respondent to the divorce petition) consents to the divorce. This is often called a 'no-fault' divorce. You can have had periods of living together as long as they do not add up to more than 6 months and you have been apart for at least 2 years altogether. Your husband or wife must agree in writing. It may be possible for you to show that you’ve been separated while living in the same home as your wife or husband as long as you’re not living together as a couple (for example you sleep and eat apart).
5 Years Separation
You can apply for divorce on the grounds that you have lived separately for more than 5 years and your marriage has irretrievably broken down. Your husband or wife who is repondent to the divorce petition does not need to agree to this. The Respondent cannot defend the divorce petition on this ground but he/she can ask the court not to grant the final decree because of a major financial or other type of hardship.
Following is the step by step procedure for getting a divorce in England & Wales:
Step 1: Divorce Petition
The divorce process starts by divorce petitioner or his/her appointed divorce lawyers filing the divorce petition in the relevant divorce court by completing application form D8 and sending the form with the relevant enclosures to the divorce court. Within a few days of getting the divorce petition, the divorce court would allocate a case number to the divorce petition and would write to the petitioner or his/her divorce solicitors confirming the receipt of the divorce petition.
The divorce court will send your husband or wife (the respondent) the divorce application and an ‘acknowledgement of service’ form. If you applied for divorce on adultery grounds and named the other party who committed adultery with your spouse, a copy of the divorce petition would also be sent to such other named party.
Step 2: Response To Divorce Petition
Within 8 days of receiving the divorce petition and ‘acknowledgement of service’ form, your husband or wife (the respondent) will need to respond to your divorce application by completing the ‘acknowledgement of service’ form and send a reply to your divorce petition stating whether or not he/she intends to contest the divorce. The Respondent must respond within 7 days in case of online response where the divorce petition was filed by the petitioner online.
Step 3: Applying For Decree Nisi
If your husband or wife has agreed with the divorce in the ‘acknowledgement of service’ form, you can continue with the divorce process and apply for decree nisi. To apply for decree nisi, you will also have to complete one of the following statements forms:
- adultery statement
- unreasonable behaviour statement
- desertion statement
- 2 years’ separation statement
- 5 years’ separation statement
If your spouse does contest the divorce, you are still able to apply for decree nisi, but you will need to attend a court hearing where your divorce case will be discussed. A divorce court judge will then decide whether to grant you a decree nisi. If your divorce petition is approved by the court, you and your spouse (respondent) will be sent certificates stating the time and date when divorce will be granted. If your divorce petition is rejected, you may be sent a form called a ‘notice of refusal of judge’s certificate’ giving reasons why you are not permitted to divorce. This form will also tell you what steps to take next. For example, you might be asked to provide additional information or you might be required to attend a hearing.
Step 4: Order From The Divorce Court
Once the Decree Nisi has been pronounced by the divorce court, the petitioner or his appointed divorce lawyers will receive the Order from the divorce Court. The Decree Nisi is the first decree in the divorce proceedings which confirms that the Court considers that the petitioner is entitled to a divorce but you are not legally divorced until you get Decree Absolute from the divorce court.
Step 5: Applying For Decree Absolute
After 6 weeks and 1 day of Decree Nisi being granted by the divorce court, you can then apply for a decree absolute by completing notice of application for decree nisi to be made absolute form. Before applying for a decree absolute, it is advisable to resolve any financial issues, if there are assets and or money of which settlement is required. Once you have decree absolute, you are officially divorced and no longer married .
A divorce financial settlement is an arrangement under which a couple’s assets and financial affairs are separated upon divorce. In England and Wales, the act of divorce itself doesn’t put an end to the financial relationship between you and your partner. The property and money issues (divorce financial settlement) in a divorce matter can either be settled with mutual agreement in the form of a consent order approved by the divorce court or through an application for divorce financial settlement order made by a divorce court.
Obtaining a financial settlement when you are divorcing your spouse is important because outstanding financial claims may come back to disrupt your lives even years after your divorce has been finalised. This is because in England and Wales, even when you’re divorced, you still retain the ability to make financial claims against your ex and vice versa, and there’s no time limit for making these. This is why it’s crucial to put your financial affairs in order and have a binding court order stating what your financial arrangements with your ex husband or wife are.
Our team of divorce financial settlement solicitors are specialists in providing high quality legal services for divorce financial settlement matters. Our experienced financial settlement solicitors have wealth of knowledge and experience of successfully handling divorce financial settlement matters.
If you have already been divorced abroad and obtained no financial settlement or the financial settlement made in the other country was inadequate, you may be able to apply to the English Court for a financial settlement order against your former spouse.
The English divorce courts have the ability to grant divorce financial provision even though a divorce may have been previously pronounced abroad and financial provision already made. The purpose of the legislation, known as Part III of the Matrimonial and Family Proceedings Act 1984 (“Part III”) is to alleviate the adverse consequences of no, or no adequate, financial provision made on divorce by a foreign court in a situation where the parties had substantial connections with England.
Already divorced abroad and want to apply for financial relief in England? Contact our expert team of divorce financial settlement solicitors London, Manchester or Birmingham for fast, friendly, reliable, and fixed fee legal services for your divorce financial settlement after foreign divorce.
Divorce and separation is a very difficult decision to make and should never be taken lightly. Our team of divorce lawyers is aware of the sensitivity and complexity involved in divorce matters. We understyand that every individual is in a different situation. To make your life easier, our highly trained and experienced divorce lawsyers will guide and support you each step of the divorce process. Our specialist divorce lawyers will cut through the legal jargon and ensure you understand exactly what’s happening at all times.
Our divorce lawyers will discuss the possible grounds on which you can apply for divorce after gathering all the factual information from you. We will explain to you the court procedures in very simple and clear terms and fully guide you through the procedures and carry out all the follow up work until the Decree Absolute is issued by the divorce court.
|Our Fixed Fee For Divorce|
|Our Hourly Rate For Divorce|
- The court fee for filing divorce in the family court is £593 which has to be paid at the time of filing for divorce. Petitioners with very low income may qualify for court fee exemption.