Relationship breakdown and divorce

A marriage may be dissolved on the ground that it has broken down irretrievably. To demonstrate this, one or more of the following five circumstances (the ‘grounds for divorce’) must be proved:

  • Your spouse has committed adultery and you find it intolerable to continue to live with him/her.
  • Your spouse has behaved in such a way that it would be unreasonable to expect you to continue living with him/her.
  • Your spouse has deserted you for you a continuous period of two years or more.
  • You have been living apart from your spouse for two years or more and your spouse agrees to the divorce.
  • You have been living apart from your spouse for five years or more, whether or not your spouse agrees to the divorce.

The divorce process

If the divorce goes through without any complications, it will usually take about four months from start to finish. The person seeking the divorce will be the Petitioner, and the other party will be the Respondent. Granting a divorce is a two-stage process. Initially, the court will pronounce a ‘Decree Nisi’ of divorce – this is not the divorce itself – and six weeks later you can apply for the court to grant a ‘Decree Absolute’, which finalises the divorce. 

Once divorce proceedings are underway, the court has wide powers to determine questions relating to matrimonial finance, although final orders can only be made after there has been a Decree Nisi. See our page on Financial Issues for more details.

Would you like more information?

If you would like us to act for you in relation to divorce proceedings, or any related matters, then telephone us on 01332 293293 contact us online to arrange to meet one of our solicitors. We give an initial 30-minute consultation free of charge.

Would you like to speak to someone?

We provide an initial 30 minute consultation free of charge. Please complete the form below and we will be intouch.


9 + 5 =

We are using cookies on our website

Our website uses cookies, which help us to improve our site and enables us to deliver the best possible service and customer experience. By clicking accept you are agreeing to our cookie policy.