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Check that you are eligible to divorce

You are entitled to apply for divorce if you have been married to your partner for more than 1 year.

It is important to the courts that you have sufficient grounds for divorce, which will need to include one or more of the following:

  • Adultery, where your partner has had sexual intercourse with another person within the last 6 months.

  • Unreasonable behaviour, such as domestic violence, verbal abuse, drug taking, where it is not reasonable to expect you to continue to live together.

  • Desertion, where more than 2 years has passed since your partner left.

  • 2 years of separation and both parties are in agreement to divorce.

  • 5 years of separation even if no agreement can be reached.

The Order Of The Divorce Process

It is important to consider with any children, who has custody, where the children will live and how they will be financially supported if they are minors.

We are able to draft a ‘Consent Order’ to determine child arrangements such as when they spend time with each parent and what types of contact are acceptable by both parents. This can be formalised by applying for an order to make it legally binding, however proof of Mediation will be required before making an application into court.

Further consideration is needed as to how the family home will be divided and how finances are to be shared. You may wish to consider the making of an application for a ‘Financial Order’ to the court for yourself or your children at this stage.

You or your solicitor needs to complete a D8 form for either divorce, the dissolution of a civil partnership or Judicial Separation (can be applied for with less than 1 year of marriage).

You, (the petitioner) will need a current address for your wife/husband (the respondent) and at least one of you needs to be permanently UK resident.

You will need to specify grounds for divorce and include details. In the case of adultery you may wish to name the person and provide an address. The courts will then copy them in on all the correspondence.

You will need your marriage certificate, or a certified copy of it. Of if you do not have this you can obtain one from

You will need to pay the court fee of £550, and you or your solicitor will need to send all the documentation to the nearest Divorce Centre of which there are 11 nationally.

The respondent (your wife/husband) on receipt of the petition has 8 days to respond. They will either agree and therefore you can move on to the next stage or they will look to prepare a defence.

In the latter case, they will have a further 21 days to submit a defence into court. A judge will now be involved in deciding whether or not to grant a Decree Nisi and more information may be required.

A D84 form will need to be completed by you or your solicitor. If the case is undefended and the court see no reason for the divorce not to proceed, that this conditional order will be granted. This may take a few weeks before certificates are received from the court.

If the case is defended then a hearing will be required and a judge will need to be involved.

A D36 form will need to be completed by you or your solicitor. The application for a Decree Absolute or Final Order (to dissolve a civil partnership) can only occur 49 days after the granting of a Decree Nisi.

Any legally binding agreement such as how to divide property or money (a financial order) must be applied for before.

This is the final stage of the process after which you are free to marry again.

Separation Agreement (Learn More)

We are happy to draft a Separation Agreement which makes provision for children, property and money when couples are no longer living together. This will require the completion of a questionnaire that we can provide you with.

We will need details of all the parties involved, both parents and children, names and addresses and full financial disclosure, to make provision for child welfare and future support and protect each other’s assets from financial claims.

The agreement will deal with confidentiality, property, finances and children. How property shall be dealt with including mortgage payments and outgoings, personal chattels and debts. Where the children will live, how parents will spend time together, the extent and types of contact and financial maintenance. Fixed fee prices, enquire within.

Undefended Divorce, Dissolution of a Civil Partnership or Judicial Separation

We are happy in undefended cases, to make the applications on your behalf. Fixed fee prices, enquire within (not including court costs).

Defended Divorce, Dissolution of a Civil Partnership or Judicial Separation

We will need to discuss your case in detail. This is likely to require face to face meetings via video or in one our offices with a family solicitor. Once completed we should be able to provide you an idea of overall costs.

Applications for any Financial Orders, Orders for Child Arrangements or Specific Issues will carry separate additional charges.

For solicitor representation at hearings we will charge an hourly rate, a half day or a full day rate, plus disbursements dependent on specific requirements.

Consent Orders

We are happy to draft a consent order to determine child arrangements and to submit a c100 form for approval by the courts to make it legally binding. Fixed fee prices, enquire here:

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Ask a Lawyer a Family based Question Now

Call us 0800 0931 528

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The information and any commentary on the law in this article is for information purposes only. Every reasonable effort is made to make the information and commentary accurate and up to date, but no responsibility for its accuracy and correctness, or for any consequences of relying upon it, is assumed by either Lawyers Online. The information and commentary does not, and is not intended to, amount to legal advice to any person on a specific case or matter. You are strongly advised to obtain specific, personal advice from a solicitor about your case or matter and not to rely on the information or comments on this site.