20 Apr Fixed fee divorce solicitor – How do I apply for a divorce?
Fixed fee divorce
We appreciate costs are always a concern for you, and so at Rutters Solicitors we offer a fixed fee divorce. This means you will know the cost for a divorce upfront, right at the start. To find out more and to learn if you can take advantage of our fixed fee divorce please call our Family Solicitor, Genette Gale on 01747 852377 or email her email@example.com
For more details about the process of a divorce, please keep reading. If you want to know more or are unsure if you can apply for a divorce then please call Genette Gale, our Family Solicitor, on 01747 852377.
We also offer an initial free consultation so you can get free divorce advice without the worry of costs. To take advantage of this call our Family Solicitor, Genette Gale on 01747 852377 or email her firstname.lastname@example.org There are financial implications with divorce proceedings and so it is advisable to get legal advice prior to embarking on divorce proceedings. You can then be made aware of pitfalls before it is too late.
How to apply for a divorce?
Step 1 – What reason do I need to get a divorce?
The new no fault divorce law has not yet become law, the draft law is making its way through Parliament but is not law yet. This means that unfortunately if you want a divorce, we have to still use the old existing divorce system. So what does this mean? Well, firstly you cannot apply for a divorce unless you have been married for at least one year. The first step is to complete a divorce petition. The ground for every divorce is that the marriage has broken down irretrievably due to 1 of 5 reasons. When you are completing your divorce petition you will need to choose one of five reasons which are:
- The other person has committed adultery and as a result the person applying for the divorce finds it intolerable to live with them;
- The other person has behaved in such a way that the person applying for the divorce cannot reasonably be expected to live with them;
- The other person has deserted the person applying for the divorce for a continuous period of at least two years immediately preceding the presentation of the petition. This reason is rarely used;
- The parties to the marriage have lived apart for a continuous period of at least two years and the other person, who is not applying, consents to the divorce;
- The parties to the marriage have lived apart for a continuous period of at least five years immediately preceding the presentation of the petition.
The divorce petition is sent into court by post or electronically, with the marriage certificate and the court fee or if you are on a low income you can apply to be considered for a reduction in the court fee.
Step 2 – How do I prove the other person has received the divorce petition?
The person applying for the divorce is known as the Petitioner or Applicant. The person who is responding to the divorce petition is known as the Respondent. The court will send the respondent the divorce petition and ask them to complete an acknowledgement of service form and send it back to the court. The acknowledgment of service form is the Petitioner’s evidence that the Respondent has received the divorce petition. Once the Petitioner has received the acknowledgment of service form they can apply to move the divorce forward to step 3. To find out what to do if the Respondent does not return the acknowledgment of service form please see our previous article https://rutterslaw.co.uk/2019/02/19/my-husband-has-not-responded-to-my-divorce-petition-what-can-i-do/
Step 3 – Applying for Decree Nisi which is the middle stage of the divorce
If the Respondent is not defending the divorce the next step is to apply for Decree Nisi, to do this the following need to be sent to court (or completed online) by the Petitioner or their solicitor:
- Application for decree nisi
- Statement in support.
(If the Respondent defends the divorce your solicitor will advise you what to do next.)
A judge will consider the application for Decree Nisi and if they are satisfied you are entitled to a divorce you will be notified of the date when the court will grant your Decree Nisi. On the same date, if the Petitioner has asked for the Respondent to pay all of their costs or a contribution, the judge will decide whether to make a cost order or not. A cost order is an order saying that one person has to pay another person’s costs. The Decree Nisi will then be sent to you or your solicitor once it has been granted by the court.
Step 4 – Applying for Decree Absolute
Six weeks and one day after Decree Nisi the Petitioner can apply for Decree Absolute. To do this a form is completed and posted to the court or the form is completed online. The court will consider the application and then send you, your Decree Absolute. The granting of Decree Absolute you’re your marriage and the divorce proceedings.
There are reasons why it would not be advisable to apply for Decree Absolute before the financial matters arising from the divorce are resolved. YOU SHOULD SEEK LEGAL ADVICE ABOUT THIS BEFORE APPLYING FOR DECREE ABSOLUTE. However, it is always better to get legal advice prior to starting divorce proceedings so everything is started correctly.
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