To obtain a divorce, current law requires people seeking divorce to satisfy the court that their marriage has irretrievably broken down. There are five facts that a spouse can rely on to establish the irretrievable breakdown of marriage, three are based on fault and two are based on a period of separation of either 2 or 5 years which, for most people is just not realistic.
Under the new law, from April 2022, couples will only have to state that the marriage has broken down irretrievably. This will ease the impact of unnecessary conflict on couples and families who will no longer have to provide 1-5 reasons why their spouse has behaved unreasonably which often causes upset, conflict and hurt from the outset.
The law has been crying out for reform and although the date is later than was originally indicated (August), the 6th April 2022 is now fixed as a matter of Parliamentary record. It is hoped that the new law and court process will reduce tensions and in turn benefit the children of families and strengthen signposting to mediation and other alternative routes of resolution. The language used is also being brought up-to-date: the terms “decree nisi” and “decree absolute” will be replaced with “conditional order” and “final order”. “Petitioners” will be replaced by “applicants”.
For more information on “no fault divorce” please click here.
It is important to understand that the finances of a marriage are always kept completely separate to the divorce process. For further information on financial settlements, please see our frequently asked questions.
Our family team are excited to implement the new divorce laws which will hopefully alleviate unnecessary conflict and tensions during an already difficult time in our clients’ lives.
If you have any queries regarding a divorce or the division of your matrimonial finances, please contact our team below for a free initial telephone consultation on 01926 354704