• We are the UK's leading immigration specialists
  • We've had over 3000 applications
    approved
  • We are open 9 am to 5.30 pm. Monday to Friday; Saturday by appointment only.

Divorce &Separation

Our divorce and separation section is here to give you all the guidance you need when it comes to managing your finances during a relationship break up.

 

Fill the form for immediate help & assistance with your situation. We’re here to help you in person, via the phone or online.

Request a call back from our immigration experts

If you are facing a separation or divorce, we have all the help you need. The award-winning guides below explain everything you need to understand and do to separate or get divorced, agree arrangements about the children, and sort out your property and money.

 

Our advice will help you work out what to do and what to expect, reduce the stress on both of you, save you money, and help you get to a better place, sooner. We’ll show you how to agree what you can agree, and (if neccessary) how to go to court about the things you can’t. We’ll also show you how to do it without a lawyer if you can’t afford one, and how to make everything easier and ensure it is is fair by getting just a little legal advice if you can.

 

If you are just starting to separate or think about divorce or arrangements about the children, have a look at resources at the top of the page. If you are a little bit further into the process, look a little further down. 

DIVORCING IN THE UNITED KINGDOM

You can get a divorce in England or Wales if you have been married at least a year and your relationship has permanently broken down.
You must have a marriage that is legally recognised in the UK – this includes same-sex marriage. In order for your marriage or civil partnership to be recognised in the UK, you will need to make sure that you have followed the correct process according to local law in the country you got married in. If you did, then you will not need to register your marriage in the UK.

You and your spouse both should live in the UK, however if this is not the case, we can discuss your options to see if you are eligible to apply for a divorce in the UK.

If you are not in contact with your spouse and you do not know where they live, you can still apply for a divorce, however the process is slightly different and requires supplementary evidence.

REASONS FOR DIVORCE?

When you apply for a divorce you will need to prove that your marriage has broken down. You will need to give one of the following 5 reasons:

1. Adultery

This is more commonly referred to as cheating and involves your spouse having sexual intercourse with someone else of the opposite sex. At present, the law only recognises the act of adultery as sexual intercourse between a man and a woman. You are not able to give adultery as a reason if you continued to live with your spouse for 6 months after you found out about the adultery.

2. Unreasonable Behaviour

This includes various different behaviours that are serious enough that you cannot reasonably be expected to live with them.

Such behaviour could include:

• physical violence
• verbal abuse, such as insults or threats
• drunkenness or drug-taking
• refusing to pay for housekeeping

3. Desertion

Desertion is where your spouse has left you without your agreement and without a good reason. Your spouse must have deserted you for more than 2 years in the past 2 and a half years. You can still claim desertion if you still lived with your spouse for up to a total of 6 months in this period.

4. You have lived apart for more than 2 years

You can apply for a divorce if you have lived apart for more than 2 years and both you and your spouse agree to the divorce. You must get your spouse’s agreement in writing.

5. You have lived apart for at least 5 years

You can apply for a divorce if you have lived apart for at least 5 years, even if your spouse disagrees.

HOW LONG IS THE DIVORCE PROCESS?

The duration of the divorce process depends on the circumstances and complexity of your case and whether or not your spouse contests the petition.

There are 3 main steps to asking a court to approve your divorce paperwork:

1. You have to apply to the court to file for a divorce and show the reasons why you want the marriage to end.

2. You will be granted a decree nisi if your spouse does not defend your reasons for a divorce. If they do defend it then you can still apply for a decree nisi, but you will have to go to a court hearing to discuss the case.

3. You can apply for a decree absolute 6 weeks after you are granted the decree nisi. This will legally end your marriage and allow you to remarry.

These three steps typically take between 3 – 5 months.

OUR PROMISE TO YOU

NWL are well versed in dealing with a variety of divorces and personal situations. We can offer a sensitive yet sensible service that will limit the stress and anxiety that a divorce can bring.

If you choose our firm for your divorce, we guarantee you a professional, hassle-free and sensitive approach to ensure a smooth transition

Legal separation

If you have decided to separate but don’t have grounds for a divorce, or don’t want a divorce, you can still formalise the terms of your separation. We can help you to arrange a legal separation, set up solutions to protect your children’s welfare, and organise financial matters.

 

For example, to make sure you know exactly where you will stand after you separate, we can create a separation agreement for you, setting out:

  • How you wish to divide your property and other capital
  • Levels of child or spousal maintenance
  • Any other aspect of your financial separation that needs to be clearly defined.

Why clients choose us for divorce and separation

  • Sensitive and caring approach
  • Highly rated for family law in The Legal 500 and Chambers UK.
  • Members of Resolution, committed to its Code of Practice.
  • Trained collaborative lawyers and mediators
  • Broad and deep legal expertise across the firm
  • Competitive costs and tight cost control