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Before our divorce solicitors can issue a divorce petition on your behalf, you have to be married or have entered into a civil partnership for at least one year. The only acceptable 'grounds for divorce' is the irretrievable breakdown of the marriage demonstrated by:
- Unreasonable behaviour
- Adultery (not if a Civil Partnership)
- Separation for at least two years, when both parties agree to a Divorce
- Separation for at least five years, when one of the parties does not agree to a Divorce
- Desertion for two years or more
A judge will grant a Decree Nisi if there are sufficient grounds in the divorce petition. A Decree Absolute can be obtained six weeks and one day after the Decree Nisi has been granted. The marriage or civil partnership ends when the Decree Absolute is granted.
A divorce does not deal with the financial arrangements. For this a separate court order is required; see the section on Financial and Property Orders. Once you are divorced you may also want to think about other issues such as reviewing your Will.
Going through a divorce can be a very emotional time. O'Neill Morgan's divorce lawyers understand this, and will advise and guide you through the process.