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What is No-Fault Divorce Reforms? No fault divorce UK

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The UK's new no-fault divorce law, announced in February 2019, went into effect on 6 April 2022. It is a significant shift in the divorce procedure, allowing spouses to legally dissolve their relationship without assigning blame. The term "no-fault divorce" refers to this change in the law.

The government is to introduce a ‘No Fault’ reform for divorce law. This will remove blame from divorce proceedings allowing couples to focus on the more important matters.

Need immediate advice on no-fault divorce?

At DV Solicitors we can offer you a package to includes legal fees and disbursements as well as a sensible payment plan to ensure that you can afford the rising cost of a divorce.

We can take the stress away from you by preparing all of the necessary paperwork and guiding you through to a swift conclusion. We also provide advice and assistance to Judicial Separation, Annulment and breakdown of Civil Partnerships.

Call us today on 01234 350 244 or email [email protected] to book an appointment.

No fault divorce: what does it mean?

The current rules for divorce demand that one spouse alleges adultery or unreasonable behaviour for proceedings to begin. However, the ‘no fault’ route will allow either party to state that the marriage has broken down irretrievably and stop a partner from refusing a divorce if in disagreement. The new rules will also include a minimum timeframe of six months from the petition stage to decree absolute.

The grounds for divorce in England, Wales and Northern Ireland are:

  • Adultery
  • Unreasonable behaviour
  • Desertion
  • They have lived apart for more than two years and both agree to the divorce
  • Have lived apart for at least 5 years, even if one partner disagrees

Why no-fault divorce is necessary?

By introducing a ‘no-fault divorce and a six-month time frame, couples will be able to better reflect on their decision and move on with their lives much more quickly.

Separating parents especially can find it much harder to focus on the needs of the children when having to prove a fault-based fact against their ex-partner. The two-year wait makes it difficult for the former couple to move on and co-parent.

The office of National Statistics shows that 42% of marriages in England and Wales end in divorce. In 2017, it was reported that there were 101,669 divorces among opposite-sex couples compared to 338 divorces among same-sex couples.

How DV Solicitors can assist in a no-fault divorce?

Divorce attorneys still play a part in the following areas, none of which have changed much over the years:

  • Guiding the division of marital assets, including the family home, pensions, and other savings and investments, and determining the need for spousal support, if any, in the event of a divorce.
  • Creating a legally binding financial agreement between the parties through drafting documents such as the consent order.
  • Advice on benefits and assistance in bargaining. If you can't arrange with the other party, your lawyer will give you advice on whether or not to file a lawsuit and will represent you in court.
  • Putting in place agreements or rulings made by a court.
  • Helping divorcing or separating parents sort out child-care issues and implement mutually agreeable solutions.
  • When conflicts can't be resolved through other means, lawyers take the matter to court and preside over the proceedings.

This is by no means an all-inclusive list, but it serves to highlight that the divorce itself may only be a minor part of the legal process of relationship dissolution.

What is the typical time frame for a no fault divorce?

20 weeks after the initial application for a divorce order, the court will issue a Conditional Order to ensure that both parties are in agreement about proceeding with the divorce, and then, 6 weeks after that, the Final Order will be issued. As a result, the full duration of a no-fault divorce is between seven and ten months.

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DV Solicitors

DV Solicitor, a leading law firm in Bedford & London, offers a wide range of legal services including commercial property, corporate, employment, personal injury and human rights/immigration law. Known for their expertise and client-focused approach.
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By: DV Solicitors
Date: January 1, 2023

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