When a marriage that is over a year in length breaks down, you have a home in England or Wales, and your marriage is recognised in the UK – you can get a divorce. You may be upset when you are getting a divorce but you will be happy to hear that as long as both you and your partner agree to the divorce, it can be sorted out rapidly.
How To Get A Divorce
To get be granted a divorce in England and Wales there are three steps that you will have to follow.
Firstly, you will need to complete paperwork for a ‘divorce petition’ this will show why you feel that you relationship has permanently broken down and why you wish to divorce. The divorce petition is an application to the court for a divorce. Reasonable grounds for divorce come in five different flavours: –
– Unreasonable behaviour (e.g. domestic violence)
– You have lived apart for two years (your husband or wife must agree to the divorce in writing in these circumstances)
– You have lived apart for five years
When you send this information to the court you will also have to send a ‘statement of arrangements for children’ form if you have any children under the age of 16 years old, or under 18 in full time education, who will need to be cared for following the divorce. These forms will have to be sent to a local court which deals with divorces and you will have to pay a £410 court fee to begin the divorce proceedings.
Secondly, apply for a decree nisi. A decree nisi is a document that says that there is no reason why you cannot divorce. This can be done if your husband or wife does not defend the divorce petition. You can apply for a decree nisi even if they have not agreed to the divorce but you may have to attend court when a judge will decide whether you should be granted the document.
Thirdly, apply for a degree absolute. You do this 6 weeks after you have been granted a decree nisi and this document legally ends your marriage.
Solicitors And Divorce
Whether you need to involve a solicitor in your divorce will be dependent on how amiable you and your ex-partner’s relationship is. If you can make decisions regarding the care of your children, your property and the reasons for the divorce prior to the divorce hearing you may be able to complete the divorce paperwork without the help of a lawyer. However, if you cannot reach a mutually accepted decision on these important matters you should contact a lawyer for help as soon as possible.
Roskell Davies is a family law firm in Birmingham. For a full list of our expertise in family law issues, including divorce visit: http://www.roskelldavies.co.uk/family-solicitor-birmingham/
If you would like to speak with one of our divorce solicitors for advice on how to get a divorce call us on free on 0800 142 2901 or locally on 0121 354 1515.
Alternatively you can fill in our free online enquiry form and we will contact you regarding your enquiry as soon as possible.