veritas law solicitors blackburn
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solicitors in blackburn

What are the grounds for divorce?

To obtain a divorce in England you must show that the marriage has broken down irretrievably and that there are good reasons for ending your marriage. You must prove one of the five following facts which are the legal grounds for us

‘Irreconcilable differences’ cannot be used as grounds for divorce in England.

Your solicitor will advise you on choosing the most suitable grounds for your divorce.

Reason 1. Adultery

Your spouse had sex with someone else of the opposite sex and this had caused the marriage to break down. Your partner must either admit to the adultery or you must be able to provide enough circumstantial evidence to prove the adultery.

You can’t choose adultery as a reason for divorce if you continued to live with your spouse for 6 months after you found out about it.

You cannot ask for a divorce on the basis of your own adultery. If this is the case then you either need to state a different grounds for divorce, or your spouse must petition for the divorce on the basis of your adultery.

Reason 2. Unreasonable behaviour

Your spouse behaved so badly that you can no longer bear to live with them. This is the most frequently used grounds for divorce as it can cover a wide range of behaviour.

Possible examples of the behaviour this can cover may include:

The courts do not require the allegations under this ground for divorce to be particularly serious as long as you can show that you cannot be expected to continue living with the behaviour in question.

From a practical point of view, in some cases it may be beneficial to use mild allegations in order to reach agreement with your spouse and move the process forwards quickly, rather than them arguing over the allegations.

Reason 3. Desertion

Your spouse has left you:

You can still claim desertion if you have lived together for up to a total of 6 months in this period.

Reason 4. You have lived apart for more than 2 years – with consent for the divorce

You can get a divorce if you’ve lived apart for more than 2 years and both agree to the divorce. Your spouse must agree in writing.

Reason 5. You have lived apart for more than 5 years – without consent for the divorce

Living apart for more than 5 years is usually enough to get a divorce, even if your spouse disagrees with the

Please contact us for more information or to arrange a consultation.