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Your Guide To The No Fault Divorce Reforms

All of us at Bartletts Solicitors in Hoole welcome the proposed new divorce law reforms, aimed at reducing hostility between separating spouses by enabling couples to get divorced without the need to blame one another for the breakdown of their marriage.

The so-called no-fault divorce reforms are being considered by Parliament and if they become law then they should make the whole process more straightforward and less stressful for separating partners.

What Are The Proposed New Divorce Law Reforms?

The current divorce law dates back to 1973 (The Matrimonial Causes Act) and generally states the need to assign blame to your spouse in order to divorce. This doesn’t allow for those couples who have simply grown apart and want to divorce quickly, without the need to wait 2 years.

As a guide, the main changes of the proposed reforms include:

  • No need to apportion blame, fault or give a reason for the divorce
  • No need to wait for a period of separation of a minimum of 2 years
  • Do need to wait 6 months from issuing the Petition to finalising the divorce, to give both sides a cooling off period
  • Can jointly apply for divorce
  • A partner cannot refuse to divorce their spouse
  • If one partner disagrees, the couple must live apart for 5 years before applying for divorce

What Has Stayed The Same With The Reforms?

Couples wishing to divorce still need to wait a minimum of a year from their marriage date before starting divorce proceedings; and the process is still made up of Petition, Decree Nisi and Decree Absolute.

How We Can Help With Divorce

Making the decision to divorce is never an easy one, but our specialist family law solicitors are here to help and support you through the process. The new reforms will be introduced as soon as parliamentary time allows – and should reduce hostility between spouses and help maintain parental relations during an already stressful time.

To speak to one of our specialist solicitors about any divorce-related query you have or to find out more about the no-fault divorce reforms, contact us on 0800 988 3674 or Chester 01244 311 633 or email