No-fault divorces are to be introduced into law

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New legislation coming in to introduce no-fault divorces

As members of Resolution, WSP Solicitors’ Family Team have welcomed the recent news that there is to be new legislation to overhaul the archaic divorce law. The legislation will be introduced as soon as parliamentary time is available.

The move towards a no fault divorce means that there will no longer be a requirement for divorcing couples in England and Wales to assign blame. This will help to reduce the acrimony between them and avoid unnecessary conflict. This is particularly important if there are children of the marriage.

At the moment, there is only one legal ground for divorce, which is that the marriage has irretrievably broken down.

The petitioner must prove this by establishing one of the five facts; adultery, unreasonable behaviour, desertion, two years separation with consent or five years separation.

It is important to note that a couple cannot get divorced unless they have been married for at least one year. If a couple want a divorce and neither party admits blame, they must live apart for two years. If one spouse does not agree to ending the marriage, they must live apart for five years before a divorce is granted.

These are the five stages of a simple, non-contested divorce:

Step 1 – Draft the divorce petition and file it with the Court;

Step 2 – The Respondent or their solicitor completes the Acknowledgement of Service and sends this to the Court;

Step 3 – Apply for Decree Nisi;

Step 4 – Receive Decree Nisi Certificate;

Step 5 – Apply for Decree Absolute which formally dissolves the marriage (this can be done no sooner than six weeks and one day after the Decree Nisi has been pronounced and it is preferable to wait until the matrimonial finances have been resolved before applying for it).

Read the full survivor’s guide to divorce.

For more information on Divorce or any other Family related issue, please contact our team today.



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