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Four Steps to a Divorce

January can be a significant time of year for some couples. Following the Christmas period when emotions run high and you have spent more time together as a family, where it might not have been the idyllic festive period you wished for, as a Family Law department we quite often see an increase in divorce requests at this time of year.

According to the Office of National Statistics there was a 5% increase in divorce petitions presented at court in 2016, compared to the previous year.  The average marriage now lasts 12 years, with 42% of marriages now ending in divorce.

One question we often ask at an initial meeting with clients is – Is it really over? Is there anything that can be done through an initial separation or couples counselling?  If there is a significant reason that is given then divorce can be requested.

There are four steps to a divorce in the UK:

1. Find a valid reason for grounds for divorce

2. File a D8 divorce petition with the courts, which your solicitor can do on your behalf.

3. Apply for a decree nisi. The judge will consider the application. If he agrees will pronounce decree nisi.

4. Apply for a decree absolute after a minimum wait of six weeks and one day.

This will only dissolve your civil marriage. If you entered into a religious marriage, you may need to speak to the relevant religious authority for guidance.

We strongly recommend using mediation especially when children are concerned, we can recommend Mediators for you to work with.

This can be a very emotional time for all involved and our Family Law team are here to support and look after your needs at this difficult time. Call John on 01527 912912 to make an initial appointment to discuss your future.

Studley (Head Office):

Haydon House
Alcester Road
B80 7AN

01527 912912


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3 Copenhagen Street

01905 676676


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Second floor, White House
111 New Street
B2 4EU

0121 270 5666