The only way you can get a divorce in the UK is to demonstrate to the court that your marriage is irreparable, which can be known as irreconcilable differences. To be able to do this, you have to show that one of the five facts for divorce has happened.

The Five Facts Of Divorce

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These five divorce facts are:

  1. Adultery
    The definition of adultery is your husband or wife having a sexual relationship outside of your marriage with someone of the opposite sex and if this happens, you may seek a divorce on the grounds of adultery. You will not be able to use this fact for divorce if your husband or wife has sexual relations with someone of the same sex, as this is not in the legal definition.
  2. Unreasonable behaviour
    This fact can be used when your husband or your wife has acted in a way which means you can no longer tolerate to be with them. This may include physical or mental abuse, drug or alcohol abuse or a lack of financial support.
  3. Desertion
    If your husband or wife has left you, without your agreement and without a good reason, you can seek a divorce for desertion. You have to be without your husband or wife for more than 24 months in the last 30 months for desertion to apply.
  4. Separation for two years
    If you and your husband or wife agree that you both wish to separate, you will need to be apart for two years before you can apply to get divorced.
  5. Separation for five years
    If you and your wife or husband have been living apart for five years or more, you are able to use this as a fact for divorce and you do not need your wife or husband to agree to get a divorce, you can get one anyway.

If you are considering getting a divorce you will want to get some specialist advice from a family lawyer. They will be able to talk to you about your particular situation and advise you properly on which fact you should use to obtain a divorce and whether you will need to provide any evidence.

For more information about this article or any aspect of our family law services, please call us on 0800 142 2775 or reply to this email and we will be delighted to help you (there is no charge for initial telephone discussions).