Lewis Chatten and Iram Amin of our Family Department consider the changes to the law following the introduction of the no fault divorce process in England and Wales.
In April 2022, the Divorce Dissolution and Separation Act 2020 came into effect which brought about major changes in the divorce process. Prior to the 2020 Act coming into effect, a divorce could only be granted if one of the specific facts were proven which resulted in the marriage breaking down irretrievably.
Following the 2020 Act coming into effect, there has been a conscious shift from the previous “blame game” by allowing one of the spouses (or both) to make a statement of irretrievable breakdown without having to essentially blame their spouse for the breakdown.
Married couples are now able to make a mutual decision to end their marriage and file a joint statement of irretrievable breakdown without having to separate and remain separated for two years which was previously perhaps the most amicable way to progress a divorce application.
Once the statement and appropriate application have been made, there is no opportunity for the respondent to “contest” the application. It will be accepted by the Court that the statement of irretrievable breakdown is conclusive evidence that the marriage has broken down.
The new law has introduced a new minimum period of 20 weeks from the start of the proceedings and when the court will grant a conditional order (previously know as the Decree Nisi). This enables the applicant(s) time to reflect on their decision and of course there is the option to change their mind before a Final Order is made by the Court. On the other hand, where divorce is ultimately inevitable, it will allow time for the married couple to co-operate and make arrangements for their futures including financial arrangements and any children related matters.
The Divorce, Dissolution, and Separation Act 2020 has not changed the law in respect of matrimonial finance matters or ancillary relief proceedings following the breakdown of a marriage; the Court will retain its powers to make decisions in respect of future financial needs of the parties.
We Can Help – Reduced Fixed Fee Offer from January to March 2023
Here at Charles Strachan Solicitors we appreciate that the breakdown of a marriage can be an upsetting and difficult time.
Our Family Department are currently running an offer in relation to no-fault divorces. Fees have been reduced from £600 (plus vat & disbursements) to £450 (plus vat & disbursements).
Contact Iram Amin today to book your appointment by telephoning 0121 704 3311 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org