In: Family

Traditionally, it is thought that the New Year brings with it a spate of divorces and that January is ‘divorce month.’ However, September and Autumn in general is also a very busy time for divorce solicitors. So, why is that and what are the first steps to take if you are looking for a divorce?

There are a number of things that can lead to divorce proceedings beginning around the end of the summer, but some of the main reasons that are suspected include:

  • Going on holiday over the summer holiday period, or just generally spending a lot of time together that can lead to arguments and problems being exposed.
  • The day-to-day routine that everyone is used to during the rest of the year is disrupted, and families and couples find that they can’t adapt to the changes.
  • The cost of childcare and the added expenses of going on holiday can cause financial issues and tensions within a relationship, and ultimately push it to breaking point.

Currently, The Ministry of Justice’s online divorce services stated that their busiest day in 2019 was September 30th. Statistics that were released earlier in the year show that divorce petitions are up by 2% in January to March 2021 compared to the same period in the previous year. Other figures show that the number of divorce applications that were filed in March 2021 was 21% higher than January. January has the second lowest number of petitions filed (182,080) after December (147,706) while the busiest months are March, July and June.

How can I begin proceedings for a divorce?

When you have decided that a divorce is the right thing for you, you will need to do the following:

1) File a document called a divorce petition to the Courts. This will initiate the divorce process. Only one spouse can file for a divorce (the Petitioner). The other party is referred to as the Respondent.

2) Apply for a decree nisi. A decree nisi is a document that states that the court cannot see any reason why you shouldn’t be able to divorce. If your husband or wife does not agree to the divorce, you can still apply for a decree nisi, but you’ll have to go to a court hearing to discuss the case, where a judge will decide whether to grant you the decree nisi.

3) Apply for a decree absolute. A decree absolute is the legal document that ends your marriage once and for all. You need to wait at least 43 days (6 weeks and 1 day) after the date of the decree nisi before you can apply for a decree absolute.

Grounds for Divorce

When you are applying for a divorce, you must be able to prove that you have suitable grounds. The Grounds when applying for Divorce are:

  • Adultery
  • Unreasonable Behaviour
  • Desertion
  • That you’ve been separated for at least 2 years
  • That you’ve been separated for at least 5 years

If you have decided that divorce is the best option for you and your partner, then it is best to seek expert legal advice. Our experts can help you throughout the divorce process, get in touch today.

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