Divorce FAQs

How long do I have to be married before I can start a divorce?

You need to have been married for at least one year.

How do I start divorce?

A divorce is started by sending a divorce petition to the court.

What do I need to prove so that I can get a divorce?

There is only one ground for divorce, which is that your marriage has irretrievably broken down.

To show the court that your marriage has irretrievably broken down, you must prove one of the following five facts:

  1. Your spouse has committed adultery and you find it intolerable to live with them
  2. Your spouse has behaved in such a way that you cannot reasonably be expected to live with them (commonly known as “unreasonable behaviour”)
  3. Your spouse has deserted you for a continuous period of at least two years
  4. You and your spouse have lived apart for two years and your spouse agrees to the divorce
  5. You and your spouse have lived apart for five years (whether or not your spouse agrees to the divorce)

How long does a divorce take?

We are often asked “how quick can I get a divorce?”. There is no exact answer, as much will depend on how quick the court is in processing the papers. However, an average divorce may take between 6 and 9 months.

How do I get an amicable divorce?

Unless you and your spouse have been separated for at least two years, then at the present stage one of you would have to start the divorce on the basis of the others adultery or unreasonable behaviour. However, and even if this is the case, we will work to try and reach agreement with your spouse so that everything is dealt with as amicably as possible.

What if my ex won’t agree to a divorce?

Although it can make things more difficult, it is not impossible to still divorce your spouse even if they don’t agree or decide to ignore everything. However, this can only apply in certain situations and we would need to discuss this with you and assess your case.

Can I divorce my ex even if we still live together?

The fact that you may still live with your spouse does not automatically mean that you cannot start a divorce. Indeed, many separating couples may still live together until they can resolve their financial settlement. There may be implications as to the fact of the divorce you rely on if you are still living together, but we can advise you of how best to deal with this issue.

How much will a divorce cost?

In order to help you budget we offer competitive fixed fee packages to represent you throughout the whole divorce process, whether you are starting the divorce or responding to it. For full details please click here.


For further information, or to discuss any other family issue, then please contact James Heywood in our Family Department for further information or a quote – 01227 762888 or by email to james.heywood@robinsonssolicitors.com