Frequently Asked Questions

2. What do I need to start a divorce?

You will need the original or a certified copy (available from the registry office) marriage certificate, the court fee (currently £550.00) or if you qualify for a fee remission from the court, a fee exemption form from the court, and of course your instructions for a Divorce Solicitors London to complete the divorce papers. If you were married abroad and the certificate is not in English, you will need a certified translation and an Affidavit confirming the accuracy of the translation. If need be, a Divorce Solicitors London can arrange for this, but extra costs will be incurred. Also, if there have been any previous court proceedings (for example injunctions, or in respect of the children) we will need the court orders.

3. Does my husband/wife need a divorce solicitor? Can we both use the same divorce solicitor?

Rules of professional conduct prevent a Divorce Solicitors London from acting for both parties. It is entirely a matter for your spouse as to whether they obtain legal advice, but generally speaking it is best if they do so at the very least they know where they stand.

4. Can I get the other side to pay for my divorce costs?

Again this depends on the circumstances of your case. If you are starting a divorce on a ‘fault’ ground (adultery or unreasonable behaviour) it is possible to apply for costs, although we do suggest that the issue of costs is addressed early on in the case so as to avoid any unnecessary aggravation further down the line, which may in turn increase costs if issues relating to finances or the children becoming acrimonious. It is often the case that a Divorce Solicitors London can agree the cost of the divorce with your spouse (or his or her solicitor) before proceedings are issued. We are committed to dealing with cases in a manner that avoids unnecessary conflict and we will therefore consider this position with you at the first interview, and come up with an agreed plan of action with you.

5. Can we separate formally without getting a divorce?

Yes. If you have decided to separate, but do not want to consider a divorce for the time being, a separation agreement is strongly recommended. A Divorce Solicitors London can advise you and help you achieve the best separation agreement for you

6. How long does a divorce take?

This will entirely depend on the circumstances.

To ensure the process goes ahead as quickly as possible, it is strongly recommended to work with a Divorce Solicitors London that has strong experience with divorces. In many cases, we are able to negotiate an agreement between you and your spouse, allowing the divorce to move forward in a way that both parties can accept, as quickly as possible.

A Divorce Solicitors London can also ensure that all of the relevant paperwork is handled quickly, efficiently and accurately, preventing any unnecessary delays in the divorce process.

7. Is a religious divorce valid?

A religious divorce may dissolve a religious marriage. However, to end a legal marriage in England and Wales, you must obtain a legal divorce, through the courts.

8. What happens if I get divorced in another country?

Divorces which take place overseas are not automatically legally recognised in England and Wales. This means that a divorce can be valid in the country where it took place, but it will not necessarily be recognised in England and Wales. This means you may still be married and if you remarry before you legally end your first marriage, the second marriage would be void. You would also be guilty of bigamy which is a civil and criminal offence. The rules recognising overseas divorces are complex and vary depending on which country your divorce took place in. Because of this, we strongly advise that you seek legal advice from a divorce solicitor.

9. What if my husband/wife is being difficult?

The court needs your spouse’s address in order to serve the divorce papers on them. If you have lost contact with your spouse and do not know where they live or work you may be able to use an alternative method of service.

Before requesting an alternative method of service from the court, it is important that you have made every effort to find out where your spouse lives from their family, friends, employer and anyone else who knows them. If you still cannot trace them you can apply to the court for substituted service. This normally means sending the documents to a different address, such as a friend or family member you know your spouse is close to or a work address.

If, in spite of trying the above, you simply cannot trace your spouse, you can apply to a district judge for an order dispensing with service. If the judge is satisfied that you have done everything you can to try and find your spouse, the judge can make an order that the divorce can proceed without the divorce papers being served on them.

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