FAQs - Family Law

How do I begin divorce proceedings?

As long as you have been married for at least one year, a divorce petition can be prepared. This is submitted to the court and the other party would receive a form of acknowledgement. Following the interim divorce order you would apply for the Decree Absolute. Our family law solicitors are on hand to ensure your divorce is dealt with in the correct manner.

When you want to begin divorce proceedings ensuring you have the eligibility is one thing to consider, but it is best practice to seek legal advice to go through the legal implications before you start, another is the grounds for Divorce. This should be specific to your situation and if possible speak to your spouse before proceeding.

If the court is satisfied with the documents and both parties' agreement to the divorce, it may issue a Decree Nisi. This is a provisional decree that states there is no reason why the marriage cannot be dissolved

How long does a divorce normally take?

If uncontested, a divorce could typically be completed in under six months. This could extend to twelve months if there are financial complications or issues relating to children.

Other potential complications can include:
Grounds for Divorce: In the UK, you need to establish grounds for divorce, such as adultery, unreasonable behavior, desertion, or living apart for a specified period. If both parties agree on the grounds, this can expedite the process.

Financial Complications: While an uncontested divorce is usually faster, financial matters can still cause delays. This includes issues such as dividing assets, property, debts, and determining spousal maintenance. If there are complex financial situations or disagreements on these matters, it may extend the process.

Children's Arrangements: If there are children involved, arrangements for custody, visitation, and financial support need to be agreed upon. Disputes over these matters can slow down the process.

Documentation: Gathering all necessary documentation, including financial records and information about children, is crucial. Delays can occur if there are difficulties obtaining this information.

Many factors can affect the length of a divorce. From the level of agreement between the parties, the presence of financial and child-related complications, and whether the divorce is contested or uncontested. Consulting with a family lawyer from Bannister Preston can provide personalised advice based on the specific details of your situation.

What would I be entitled to?

A court is guided by many factors when considering the financial issues, these include assets, income, financial obligations, the duration of the marriage. There are many things for the court to consider and no two cases are ever the same.

Figuring out what you're entitled to is easier when you work with solicitors and a conveyancing team like ourselves. Bannister Preston makes it easy for you to find out what you can get.

If you have any questions please get in touch with our team.

Will the house have to be sold?

Again, no two cases are completely alike. Typically, one of the principle concerns of the court is how the children, and everyone else, are to be accommodated. This could mean that the family home may be sold, with the proceeds being divided such that everyone can find a new home.

Complications from this may include:

Ownership and Mortgage
If the house is jointly owned by both spouses, decisions about its future may need to be made. This includes whether one spouse will keep the house or if it will be sold.

Financial Needs of Each Spouse:
The court will consider the financial needs and obligations of each spouse, especially if there are dependent children. The primary caregiver may be given priority in staying in the family home.

Spousal Maintenance
If one spouse is financially dependent on the other, the court may consider spousal maintenance as an alternative to selling the house immediately. This allows the dependent spouse to remain in the home for a specified period.