April 6th 2022 was a monumental day for family lawyers and mediators when it saw the ushering in of a new era of “no-fault” divorce.
What does it mean in practice?
The new regime removes the ability of one spouse to make allegations about the conduct of the other and allows couples to end their marriage jointly if they wish.
How do we go about divorcing?
Since 2019 the whole divorce process has been online, and if you are comfortable to do so you can make the application online together. The government help line gives information about the steps to follow https://www.gov.uk/divorce/file-for-divorce. Alternatively, you can speak to a solicitor.
The cost of issuing the application is £593 and if you are on benefits or a low income you may qualify for help with fees.
The new divorce process.
You can now make a joint application to divorce, or if you prefer just one of you can apply.
Once you have submitted your joint application, or your individual application has been acknowledged by the other person, you will receive a Court notice confirming your application has been issued and you will then need to wait 20 weeks before the making of a Conditional Order and a further 6 weeks and 1 day before you can apply for the making of a Final Order.
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- We really welcome the move away from the blame culture that went with the issue of historic petitions. Allegations of adultery and unreasonable behaviour inflamed already emotionally charged situations and took divorces into an area of conflict that can now be avoided.
- Now the ability to issue a joint application means you are both equally in control of the process and the next steps.
- It is important to sort out your finances and arrangements for your children before applying for a Final Order and as mediators we can help you with this https://horizonmediation.co.uk/property-and-finance-mediation/ https://horizonmediation.co.uk/child-custody-mediation/