DIVORCE AND SEPARATION
Divorce is the process that terminates the legal relationship between yourself and your spouse. Most divorces are undefended and do not require personal court attendance. The process normally takes 4 – 6 months to conclude.
The divorce process is commenced by one spouse against the other spouse on the basis of one of the following facts:
1. Adultery - you would need an admission of this, as proving adultery can become difficult and expensive;
2. The other party’s unreasonable behaviour - we can advise you in our free initial meeting as to whether the basis you have qualifies for this fact;
3. Two years desertion;
4. Two years separation, with consent – this can include separation whilst living in the same household, subject to certain conditions being met;
5. Five years separation without consent.
There may be reasons why you do not wish to terminate your marriage. If you still require a legal process to formalise your separation from your spouse, or if you need to remain married to your spouse for important pension or inheritance rights, then we can assist you with a judicial separation procedure. The process, costs and timeframe is the same as a divorce except at the end you will still be married, but legally separated from your spouse.
You may wish to physically and financially separate from your spouse but have no present desire to terminate the marriage. We can give you advice on the kind of financial settlement that would be fair and how to effect such an agreement so that each party knows their responsibilities and entitlements.
The legal costs of this will depend on in the length of the separation process. However, we can give you an outline of the costs based on the specific facts of your case.
NB This is a general summary of the law as at the date of creation of this page. It should not replace legal advice tailored to your specific circumstances.