Coming to the decision that your marriage/civil partnership has come to an end is not an easy time for anyone. During this time of heightened emotion you will also be faced with the difficulties surrounding practicalities of the divorce procedure itself and the financial implications of the separation.

Here are a few frequently asked questions regarding the divorce process. For further information, do contact us for confidential guidance on 01792 468684 or email

How do I get a divorce?
To apply for a divorce, you must have been married for at least one year and your relationship must have permanently broken down. The process is now done online. PGM can submit the application for you on the Court portal. This begins the Court process in which your spouse will need to be involved. A fee of £593 has to be paid to the Court upon issuing the divorce.

What are the grounds for divorce?
Since 6 April 2022, divorce has been on a no-fault basis. The Divorce, Dissolution and Separation Act 2020 allows married couples to divorce without assigning blame. The introduction of a no-fault divorce system means that couples can petition for a divorce jointly without either person being held at fault. Read more here.

What does the divorce process look like?
In brief:
1. A single or joint application for a divorce order made.
2. 20 weeks later, the applicant or applicants can apply for the conditional decree.
3. 6 weeks later, the Final Order can be made.

How long does a divorce take?
There is a minimum period of 20 weeks between the start of proceedings, or when a court issues application and when the applicant may apply for Conditional Order. There is a current minimum time frame of 6 weeks between Conditional Order and when the Order can be made final. With an overall minimum timeframe of 6 months.

How much does a divorce cost?
We offer a standard pricing structure for our clients. Contact us for further information (link contact details).

Do I have to use a solicitor to get divorced?
Without specialist legal advice you can get things very wrong and this can delay matters and/or increase costs you may not know about it until you are years down the line. Divorces are a permanent process and it can be difficult and highly costly to undo any mistakes that are made. Furthermore, if the divorce involves children or any significant amount of money or other assets, you are strongly advised to use a solicitor.

They can:

  • advise you on what your rights are and what would be a reasonable financial settlement;
  • help you negotiate agreement on financial arrangements and how any children will be looked after;
  • make sure that court documents are correctly completed and filed on time.

What if I change my mind?
You can stop the proceedings at any time before the final order is made. (If your spouse wants to proceed with them, however, they may be able to do so). In those circumstances we would normally recommend that the application is formally dismissed by the Court.

I need to make arrangements for my children, how do I go about this?
A Child Arrangement Order can be drafted, which will determine ‘with whom a child is to live, spend time or otherwise have contact’ and ‘where a child is to live, spend time or otherwise have contact with any person’ can be sought under section 8 of the Children Act 1989 but only where there is a significant disagreement between you and your spouse.

Do we have to agree a financial settlement before we can divorce?
No. However, it is usually advisable for agreement to be reached on financial issues and for an order to be made dealing with these issues before the final order (the order finally ending your marriage) is made. Such important entitlements as pension rights can be lost in certain circumstances once the final order is granted. For information on Divorce and Finances, visit our blog here.

On final dissolution of the marriage, do I need to do anything else?
Not as far as the divorce itself is concerned. However, as part of the process, you should have considered revising your Will. If you own property and have children, it is important that you make changing your Will a priority, otherwise on your death, your ex-spouse/partner could receive everything you owned under your old Will. Read more here.

Contact our specialist family law team for further advice on 01792 468684 or email

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