Every year, more than 100,000 marriages in England and Wales end in divorce.

If it's happening to you, you are not odd, you are not unusual and you are certainly not alone. But that doesn't mean you won't be worrying about the future, frightened about finances, concerned for your home and worried about your children.

The law in this area is complex and rapidly changing to reflect society's changing social mores and lifestyle choices. You may wish to instigate proceedings to end an unsatisfactory relationship, or you may be on the receiving end of a divorce petition from your spouse.

Sital will advise you on the most cost-effective and efficient way of proceeding with a divorce/dissolution of a civil partnership, taking your individual circumstances into account.

Sital offers expertise in all areas of family and divorce law and issues arising from the breakdown, including:

  • ‘No fault’ divorce proceedings
  • Contested divorce proceedings
  • Uncontested divorce proceedings
  • Nullity and Judicial Separation
  • Arrangements for children following a Divorce or Separation
  • Financial arrangements on separation and divorce
  • Pre-nuptial agreements and pre-civil partnership agreements
  • International issues that may affect a Divorce or Separation
  • Child abduction

Divorce law changed in April 2022 to a ‘No Fault’ divorce system.

No Fault Divorce

After being announced in 2019, no fault divorce came into effect in England and Wales on 6th April 2022.

No fault divorce means that those seeking to end their marriage or civil partnership no longer need to blame each other for the breakdown of their relationship.

How does no fault divorce put an end to the ‘Blame Game’?

Under the previous law, separating couples had to choose one of the below 5 reasons to secure a divorce:

  • 2 years separation
  • 5 years separation
  • Adultery
  • Desertion
  • Unreasonable behaviour

With the new no fault divorce law, we leave behind the fault-based system of blaming one person for the breakdown of the relationship, and now couples no longer have to rely on one of the 5 reasons mentioned above to get divorced. The new law puts an end to the blame game and allows parties to take a more constructive approach to separation.

Another key change to the legislation is that it is no longer possible to object to an application for a marriage or civil partnership to be brought to an end.

Am I eligible for a no fault divorce?

Anyone entitled to a divorce in England and Wales will now be able to apply for a no fault divorce.

How will no fault divorce work in practice?

  • The previous ‘Decree Nisi’ is now a ‘Conditional Order’ and ‘Decree Absolute’ has become a ‘Final Order’.

  • The ‘Petitioner’ (the person submitting the application) has become the ‘Applicant’.

  • The requirement to establish one or more facts to prove an irretrievable breakdown of the marriage has been removed.

  • The change has introduced joint applications when both couples agree that the relationship has broken down.

  • Neither party is able to object to a divorce or separation.

  • The change has introduced a minimum 20-week period from the start of the proceedings to when the ‘Conditional Order’ can be made.

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