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Divorce & Separation

Going to a solicitor for the first time when you are considering a separation or divorce can be a difficult step to take. Although divorce may now be a common life event, it can often cause anxiety and stress. Many people have questions and concerns relating to what to expect from the process and how long it will take. This may include the practical and legal implications of divorce or separation on their living arrangements, the division and protection of assets and the interests of their children.

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Myths about divorce

There are many misconceptions about divorce. For example, most people think if there are “irreconcilable differences” between them and their spouse, it is sufficient to get a divorce. This is a myth. In order to get divorced, you have to satisfy the Court that you meet one of five statutory criteria, such as adultery or unreasonable behaviour.  

Another example is the belief that you can get a “quickie” divorce. This myth has been spread by the media about celebrity divorces. There is no such thing as a “quickie” divorce but most divorces are concluded without either person having to attend Court. Once the divorce process is started, it can take up to 6 months for the marriage to be dissolved. 

Divorce & Separation

How do I get started?

Once you have decided that your marriage has broken down and it is unlikely you will get back together, you are ready to start the formal process.

In order to issue divorce proceedings, you will require your original marriage certificate. You will need to draft and finalise the divorce petition. If possible, the content of the petition should be agreed with your spouse to avoid any delays later in the process. You will then be ready to issue the divorce proceedings.

    Many people believe that once you have separated from your spouse and have lived apart for a set period, then the divorce is just a formality. Unfortunately, this is not true. If you live separately, it may be easier to get divorced but it is not just a formality.

    In law, separated people are still married. Therefore, if you decide to separate, it is essential to take legal advice to protect your financial position. It is also important to consider other matters such as the need to change your Will.

    Our lawyers ensure that you understand the actual processes involved and are able to make informed decisions.

    Divorce and Separation Experts

    Director | Family | Family Law, Head of Family Law Department