Divorce can be a painful time. It can also be confusing. At SA Law in St Albans we have experienced solicitors and divorce lawyers who will take time to discuss the many aspects of divorce and divorce law. Our team of divorce solicitors can also advise on any aspects of divorce or separation which might affect your children or your family finances.
Our divorce lawyers will ensure that all aspects of child custody, parental rights and financial settlements are explained in full.
Am I Able To Divorce?
Firstly, to apply for a divorce you must have been married for at least one year. The ground for divorce is irretrievable breakdown of the marriage. This must be proved by one of the following 5 specified facts:
- Unreasonable behaviour
- Desertion for a period of more than 2 years
- 2 years separation by consent
- 5 years separation
If you live together for a period of 6 months after any of the above, then this will affect the grounds for divorce.
How Long Does A Divorce Take?
Divorce itself usually takes between 4 and 6 months but it can take much longer, depending on how long each person takes in the various stages required, or the level of agreement between them.
The financial situation and children aspects can also play a part. However, these run alongside the divorce suit, rather than being part of it. It can sometimes be crucial to have these things resolved before applying for the decree absolute.
If you do not wish to divorce, you may consider legal separation.
What is a Judicial Separation?
Judicial Separation is mainly used where there are religious reasons, or financial reasons relating to settlements or trusts, not to divorce. Judicial separation means that you are legally separated, and enables financial orders to be applied for. A court order will stop either of you from breaking the agreement but a clean break is only available on divorce, as are Pension Sharing Orders.
What is a separation agreement?
If you and your partner can agree about financial matters and the children, family solicitors at SA Law can draw up a Separation Agreement. If necessary we can negotiate the terms of the agreement and matters pertaining to child custody and family financial matters. The document will set out what you have agreed. You will not need to go to court.