Click here for infromation about our range of divorce services and the costs involved

Our specialist divorce solicitors have helped clients across Portsmouth and Hampshire with the legal side of a relationship breakdown whatever the situation; from complete agreement between partners to the more difficult, stressful and sometimes acrimonious court proceedings. 

Divorce Explained

In England and Wales, to obtain a divorce if you are married or to dissolve a civil partnership, proof is required to show that your marriage or civil partnership can no longer be saved - an irretrievable breakdown of marriage/relationship. The Petitioner (person filing for the divorce) must prove this on the grounds of:

  • Adultery committed by the other spouse
  • Unreasonable behaviour
  • Separation over 2 years with spousal consent
  • Separation over 5 years with no consent
  • Desertion

The Process of Divorce:

5 Steps are involved in obtaining a Divorce:

  1. Petition - The document asking the court for permission to divorce, meeting one of the grounds for divorce. This will be sent to the Court and your partner.
  2. Arrangements for Children - If you have children, agreement will have to be made on how they are looked after, housed and paid for, confirmed by a form. Mediation may be required. If you can't agree, a Judge may decide what is best.
  3. Court Order - The first step towards your final divorce. A Judge will review all the forms completed by you and your partner, and if you have met the grounds and are happy with provisions for any children, a decree nisi, a conditional order will be given. Unless minds are changed, the final divorce will be a formality.
  4. Financial Arrangements - every couple that separates will have to agree on the distribution of their finances.   We provide guidance on the fairness of this process: if agreed on, we can help to record this in a legally binding court order, and if not, we will help with negotiations and any potential Court matter. Financial disputes can be ongoing once a divorce is granted.
  5. Final Certificate for Divorce - This officially ends the marriage or civil partnership. After a six week and one day cooling off period from obtaining the conditional order applications can be made for the divorce to be finalised. If everything is in order the court will send a certificate - the 'decree absolute'.