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Divorce FAQs

1. How do I get a divorce?

This is covered in our grounds for divorce and divorce process sections.  For an informal free discussion please telephone Jennifer Brook, or Sehra Tabasum on 0121 355 0011.

2. Can I petition for divorce?

Providing that you have been married for over 1 year, and can establish grounds for divorce as set out in the grounds for divorce section you can petition for divorce.

3. How long will it take to get a divorce?

The divorce process can be concluded in approximately 6 months, although the financial settlement may take longer to finalise.  The divorce process can be delayed by the refusal of your spouse to co-operate or if documents are not returned or completed correctly.  We will complete all of the documents on your behalf and correspond with your spouse or their solicitor, to progress matters for you as quickly and as amicably as possible.

4. Will I have to go to Court?

In an uncontested divorce, generally not.  Unless there is a dispute over who pays for the divorce.

If you cannot agree over the financial and property arrangements or the arrangements for the children, then you may need to attend at Court, but again these issues are normally settled without the need for a final hearing.

5. How much will it cost me to get a divorce?

We understand the cost of divorce is a major concern.  We offer a fixed fee for divorce proceedings, inclusive of the Court fees.  If you are the Petitioner then you may be able to obtain an order that your spouse pays or contributes to the costs of the divorce proceedings.  Please contact us for an initial free discussion and details of the costs involved on 0121 355 0011.

6. My wife and I are getting divorced. Everyone knows that the Court always favours the wife and awards her at least 70%. Will I lose everything?

No.  Divorce awards or settlements are not reached by set percentages or formulas.  The aim is to achieve fairness, and every case will turn on its own facts.  If you have children then their needs have to be the first priority.  Ensuring that they are adequately housed can affect how the assets will ultimately be divided, but that does not necessarily mean a 70/30 split as people commonly believe.  

7. We are having some marital difficulties. The house is in my spouse's name. Can they make me leave if we split up?

No.  As long you are married and the property has been your marital home you have the right to remain there, known as your “matrimonial home rights”.  It is possible to place a notice on the title deeds for the property setting out your right to reside there.  The only way you can be forced to vacate the property is by an Order of the Court, which only occurs in very limited circumstances.  It is best to take early advice on your own individual situation, and certainly before taking any steps to leave the property. 

8. I have recently married but unfortunately this has not worked out and I want a divorce. My friend has stated that I have to be married for a certain period before getting a divorce. Is this true?

Parties need to be married for one year prior to issuing divorce proceedings. They can apply for other proceedings such as judicial separation within the one year period which they may be advised to do in some circumstances. If your marriage breaks down within the first year you should obviously seek advice as to whether it is beneficial for you to seek a judicial separation prior to seeking a divorce.

9. My ex and I agree what will happen with our finances; we don’t need a Court Order, do we?

The only way to stop an ex-spouse from making a claim against your income or capital in the future is to obtain an order approved by the Court, at the time of your divorce, stating your agreement is in full and final settlement of all financial claims.

Even if you are divorced and have a Decree Absolute, if you do not have a final financial order approved by the Court, there is the risk that your ex may make a claim against assets that were not even in existence when you divorced.

At Bell Lax we can assist you to obtain a final financial order, even if you are already divorced, provided you have not lost your right to make a claim by re-marrying.

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