getting-divorced

 

 “Getting Divorced” is a big subject. Everybody’s lives are different – and so are their divorces. What is more, family law is complex. Much can hang upon the wording of a statute or a procedural rule. It isn’t always easy to understand: not even for me, on occasion, and I have been a family lawyer for decades! For these reasons I have tried to make both this blog and my book easy to read and, as much as possible, devoid of legal jargon.

Here are some of the steps and obstacles you may encounter when you are getting divorced or splitting up from your partner, together with advice for navigating them successfully.

Over the years, thousands of posts about getting divorced have been published here, by me and also by other contributors to the Marilyn Stowe Family Law & Divorce Blog. I cannot list them all on this page, but if you have a specific question that is not answered by any of the posts below, do use the search box at the top of the page. More likely than not, there will be a helpful post to hand.

 

Grounds for Divorce?

This post reveals the facts and fallacies regarding the legal grounds for divorce in England and Wales. There is, for example, no such thing in English law as ‘irreconcilable differences’, however frequently we may read about Hollywood celebrities citing these in divorce papers. It is also widely assumed, mistakenly, that the Decree Absolute cannot be obtained before the parties have reached a financial settlement. Here in England and Wales, divorcing couples are required to demonstrate the ‘irretrievable breakdown of their marriage’. Under current legislation, there are five available grounds for this. We set them out here.

 

Adultery & Divorce: The Top Ten Myths

There are many common misconceptions about adultery and divorce. It is a relatively straightforward area of family law, but it causes confusion because people think the term is wider than it is. In fact it is precisely stated in law. When I appeared in my Legal Clinic on ITV This Morning, to discuss this subject, there were plenty of questions from viewers. This post sets out the top ten myths about adultery.

 

How Do You Demonstrate Habitual Residence?

This blog receives many enquiries from people overseas who wish to know if they are able to present a divorce petition in England. The answer rests on whether or not there is jurisdiction to do so. In other words: can you demonstrate a sufficiently strong connection to this country? It isn’t always easy and the answer isn’t always obvious.

 

The FDR Hearing & the First Appointment: What You Need to Know

Parties often regard the First Appointment as relatively unimportant, because they don’t have to say anything and much of what happens goes over their heads. In reality? Ignore what is going on at your peril! We also look at the FDR Hearing: a private court hearing, which provides a good opportunity for the case to settle. Again, however, the reality may be different: settling a case at an FDR hearing can be far from easy, because clients know they can still go to a Final Hearing if they wish.

 

Cohabitation: Know Your Rights & the Law

My office is frequently consulted by cohabitees who learn, to their great shock, that they have no legal remedy following the breakdown of their relationships. However cohabitees can takes steps to ensure that their partners will be provided for, should anything unexpected happen. This post provides an overview and a checklist.

 

What the Kernott v Jones Judgment Means For Cohabiting Couples

This 2011 case arose from a family break-up. The parents cohabited but never married, and there was a dispute over property ownership that went all the way to the highest court in the land: the Supreme Court. This post looks at the judgment handed down. Although it is lengthy and explores the judgment in detail, it is recommended reading for cohabitees. In short: the Supreme Court’s decision means that if you are not married and your relationship later breaks down, there may be some uncertainty about who gets what.

 

Beware the Desperate Housewives!

A constant concern of mine is the worrying role that “friends” can play in divorce. If I hear about a “friend” or if a “friend” appears in my office alongside my client, warning bells will ring. The “friends” who worry me most are the seemingly ineffectual ones who hover in the background during client meetings…

 

Applying for the Decree Absolute & What Comes Next

I receive lots of comments on this blog concerning the Decree Absolute. It is a simple process to obtain a Decree Absoute, but this appears to be the stage of the divorce process which causes the most confusion. In this post, we look at the Decree Absolute in detail and consider the important steps to take once it has been granted. I also include a checklist of the practical matters to be considered once the Decree Absolute has been granted.

 

The Top Ten Dirty Divorce Tricks

Divorce is an emotional rollercoaster and, for certain people, it brings their worst qualities to the fore. They become consumed by hatred, malice and a desire for vengeance. This is the first of two posts looking at the dirtiest divorce tricks I have encountered over a 30-year career in family law. I wish to stress that none of them are recommended – indeed, some of them are illegal!

Over the years, thousands of posts about getting divorced have been published here, by me and also by other contributors to the Marilyn Stowe Family Law & Divorce Blog. I cannot list them all on this page, but if you have a specific question that is not answered by any of the posts below, do use the search box at the top of the page. More likely than not, there will be a helpful post to hand.