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What is Divorce Day?

View profile for Joanne Druce
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Financial pressures and family tensions over the Christmas period are blamed for the surge in divorce enquiries.

When is Divorce Day?

Divorce day is the first working Monday in January, this year it falls on Monday 7th January. It is the day of the year law firms receive the most divorce enquiries, usually double.

Over 40,500 people in the UK are expected to search online for a divorce in January, this is 25% higher than usual traffic. Relate, one of the UK’s largest relationship charities, receives a 24% increase in calls during January compared to other months.

Why is it next Monday?

Couples whose relationship is already in crisis try to stay together over the Christmas period for the sake of family or children but by January the stress of the holiday has taken its toll. In a poll of 2,000 couples 1 in 5 admitted they considered divorcing in January after staying together over the festive period. In a recent survey 1 in 8 couples said the time of year would impact when they decide to start divorce proceedings, they avoid doing so before Christmas and family holidays. In the same survey 1 in 6 said financial strain is also a factor, the excessive spending over Christmas contributing to the decision.

What is the divorce rate in the UK?

42% of marriages end in divorce and the length of the average marriage is 12 years. 

What is the most common reason for a divorce?

Unreasonable behaviour was the most common reason for opposite-sex couples divorcing with 52% of wives and 37% of husbands petitioning on these grounds; it was also the most common reason for same-sex couples divorcing, accounting for 83% of divorces among women and 73% among men.

As we approach National Divorce Day we thought we would highlight some interesting facts about Divorce.


              Do I have to show that the marriage has irretrievably broken down?

             Yes but a lot of people think that it stops there, it does not!

             A petition for a divorce has to be based on 1 of the 5 grounds below

  • 2 Years Separation
  • 5 Years Separation
  • 2 Years Desertion
  • Adultery
  • Unreasonable Behaviour.

You will have to provide details supporting your grounds for divorce.

Does it matter how long you have been living apart to petition on the grounds of adultery?

No. As long as you are married and have a relationship with another person, it is adultery.

Is there such thing as a “Quickie Divorce ?"

No. It does not matter if you are a VIP or upon what basis you issue Divorce Proceedings, the procedure is the same.  It normally takes 5 to 8 months.  It depends on how quickly the paper work is dealt with.  This is how quickly the Court deals with the paper work, how quickly you return the documents and how quickly your husband/wife deals with the documents.

Will  I need my  original Marriage Certificate?

A copy is not sufficient unless it is an official copy of the Registry Office.  If you got married abroad and your Marriage Certificate is not in English, you must get an official translation.  The Marriage Certificate gets lodged with your Divorce Petition.  Once this is sent to the Court, you will NOT get it back.

             How long do I have to be married before I can apply for a Divorce?

You cannot get divorced until you have been married for at least one year.

Does it matter who issued Divorce Proceedings?

It may matter to you on a point of principle, but it does not matter to the Court and rarely has any impact in subsequent Court proceedings whether in regard to financial settlement or in respect of children. The main advantage for the person who issued the Divorce Proceedings is that it allows you more control.

Am I Divorced when the Decree Nisi has been pronounced?

No, please be aware that until your Decree Absolute is pronounced, you are still married and as a result your husband/wife is still your legal next of kin. If you have not made a Will, then they will be entitled to a large part, if not all, of your estate.  This is a matter that you will need to consider with your Solicitor.

Is Divorce Easy?

Divorce is a very stressful and emotional time.  

How can we Help?

F Barnes Solicitors have been providing Family Law advice for almost 50 years. We are supportive, friendly solicitors who recognise that during one of the most stressful times of your life you need someone in your corner. We specialise in making the whole process as stress free as possible. 

Drawing on our extensive experience, we help support you, from a free, first consultation, through to completion of your divorce, giving you the freedom to focus on starting your new life.

To arrange a free consultation with ‘step by step’ guidance to ensure you get the best outcome for you and your family call 01708 745183 or email HERE