Often the simple process of divorce can be difficult to understand. The solicitor is often faced with the misconception that after 2 years or 5 years the divorce process is automatic. This is completely untrue.

Like many things, although the divorce process is the same each case is different and the duration of the process will be dependant upon factors such as how co-operative the other party is and how much work the local Court has at that particular time.

In this section we provide an overview of divorce.

The person issuing the Divorce is the Petitioner and the other person is known as the Respondent.

Petitioner – this person starts the Divorce Petition. They are responsible for issuing the divorce at the Court and proceeding with the divorce through the various stages culminating with the dissolution of the marriage.

Respondent – This is the person who will receive the Divorce. Their involvement in the process is minimal. They simply complete the acknowledgement of service and return this to the court.

Although the process sounds very simple there is the underlying issue of financial claims that can be made by one party against the other contained in the divorce petition.

It is not simply a form filling exercise and it is vital that legal advice is obtained before beginning the process of divorce.

Divorce Requirements

In order to file for divorce you must prove that the marriage has irretrievably broken down based on one of the following facts:

Adultery – where your husband or wife has engaged in sexual relations with another man or woman whilst being married to you

Unreasonable Behaviour where you would give examples of behaviour that you found unreasonable on the part of your husband/wife that led to the breakdown of the marriage

Desertion – where your husband/wife cannot be located and has not been in contact for at least 2 years

2 Years Separation with your husband’s/wife’s Consent

5 years Separation – When you have been living apart for 5 years (consent not required)

-The Resolution - First for Family Law The Resolution Solicitors Regulation Authority


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Leeds Family Law Specialisms - Click on the links for detailed information


In order to start the Divorce either the Husband or Wife must issue the Divorce Petition through the local County Court. The taking of such action signifies that one of the parties has come to the conclusion that the marriage has ended. For detailed information on the Divorce procedure please click the link above.


One of the major concerns in any relationship breakdown is where the children will live and how contact with both parents will take place. Our Resolution accredited Solicitor will endevour to resolve children disputes with a co-operative and constructive approach. Please click the above link for detailed information.


Alongside the breakdown of a relationship there is often the question of how the famiy home will be occupied, who will be responsible for payments of the mortgage and how this will be maintained whilst final settlements are negotiated. Our Solicitor is recognised as a specialist provider of advice in this area.

Domestic Abuse

Any behaviour that you find threatening or intimidating is unacceptable and you do not have to put up with this. Our Solicitor is an accredited Resolution specialist in the area of Domestic Abuse and has represented both men and women secure protective orders to prevent such behaviour.

Unmarried Couples

Many people believe that if they have lived with each other for a number of years without marriage they have the same protection and legal rights as a married couple. However, these rights are not aquired automatically and on the breakdown of this relationship many are left without any legal protection.

Collaborative Law

The aim of the collaborative law process is to avoid going to court with the emphasis being on trying to work things out by meeting with your partner and their lawyer face to face. As your lawyer is with you throughout the process a settlement can be reached this way. Our Solicitor will be able to offer this service from November 2011.

Asian Aspects to Divorce

Our Solicitor has extensive experience dealing with clients who have married outside of the UK. We have knowledge of marriages that have taken place in India, Pakistan and Bangladesh. If you are a UK citizen and you have married in one of the above countries and now want a Divorce then please click the link above for further information.

Civil Partnerships

From December 2004 it has been possible for same sex couples in the UK to register a Civil Partnership. The rights aquired by the couple entering into this arrangement are almost the same as those of a married couple. For further information on your rights in relation to financial and children matters please click the link above.

Mediation now enforced


Before making an application for a court order in relevant family proceedings, applicants will be expected, unless exempted, to have considered alternative means of resolving their disputes

New Family Law Firm in Leeds


After much research and planning, Leeds Family Law Ltd has begun the process for gaining recognition by the Solicitors Regulation Authority. We hope to start trading in June, 2011.

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