Divorce

Experiencing the breakdown of a marriage can be very tough. We will support you through the process of obtaining a divorce.

You need to have been married for over 12 months in order to apply for a divorce.
The ground for divorce is that your marriage has broken down irretrievably. To establish this, you will need to rely on 1 of 5 facts:

  • adultery by your spouse
  • your spouse has acted in such a way that it is unreasonable for you to be expected to continue living with him or her
  • your spouse has deserted you for two years
  • you and your spouse have lived apart for two years and your spouse consents to the divorce
  • you and your spouse have lived apart for five years, whether or not your spouse consents to the divorce

Contested divorces are rare and often an agreement will be reached about who should start the divorce and the fact to be relied on. Where a divorce is based on the behaviour of your spouse, the factual detail in the divorce petition can even be agreed. We shall draft the petition for divorce with care in order to minimise unnecessary conflict.
It is rare to have to attend court in an uncontested divorce.

Stages
  1. the draft petition is usually sent to your spouse first for agreement;
  2. it is then filed with the court and sent to your spouse who is asked to acknowledge that they have received it.
  3. you will then make an application to the court for the judge to consider the divorce papers.
  4. if the judge is satisfied that everything is in order he will set a date for a conditional decree of divorce ‘decree nisi’
  5. six weeks and a day after it is pronounced, you can apply for the Decree Absolute which will end the marriage.

The whole process will take about 4 to 6 months but if financial issues also have to be settled it may be best to delay the application for the Decree Absolute until they are resolved.

We can also advise you in relation to children and financial issues arising from the divorce.

Financial Settlements

Settling the financial arrangements following the breakdown of a marriage or Civil Partnership is often a priority.
You may need advice about your home, your savings, your pension and how you will manage financially following your separation.

Our experienced solicitors will give you clarity on your legal entitlement and obligations. We shall explore what your options are and give you the very best advice and support to reach the right outcome for you and your family.
We will always strive to help you negotiate an agreed financial settlement. We shall consider whether mediation or collaboration might assist. We know that you prefer to reach amicable settlements with the minimum of delay and, of course, cost.

In some cases, an application to court is the most cost-effective option. We have the experience and skill to ensure your case is handled effectively and sensitively whichever option is most appropriate for you

Mediation Information and Assessment Meetings (MIAMs)

If you wish to make an application to the Court for financial provision you will usually need to attend a Mediation Information and Assessment Meeting (MIAM) with a trained Mediator. We are able to offer this service. For more information, please contact us.

If you would like to discuss a family law matter with a member of our team you can call us on 020 7607 5768 or visit our contact page for more information.

Need more information?

Call 020 7607 5768 for a no obligation chat to see if we can help you. Alternatively, see our contact page for other ways to get in touch.

Divorce solicitor and mediators

If you are considering separation or divorce and you would like to talk about your options call us on

020 7607 5768

info@aitkenharter.co.uk

Our offices are located at:
398, Caledonian Road London N1 1DN

We are close to Kings Cross/St. Pancras Mainline Stations, Caledonian Road & Barnsbury Overground and Caledonian Road Underground.

Urgent assistance

We can offer urgent assistance in cases of domestic violence or child abduction by helping to obtain protective orders and orders to ensure the return of a child. We are experienced in acting quickly and expeditiously to ensure that the necessary steps are taken.

The Money Advice ServiceAn independent service, set up by government. moneyadviceservice.org.uk