Legal Guide: Essential advice when applying for a divorce

Essential advice when applying for a divorce

POSTED 24/10/17

We understand that the end of a marriage is a life-changing moment but with the right support we can help you through the divorce process without undue stress. Our dedicated, sympathetic and experienced solicitors will explain what will happen, help protect your interests and alleviate anxiety, from start to finish.

Questions to consider when speaking to a divorce lawyer:

  • Have you been married for a year?
  • You can’t divorce before 12 months of marriage. If you’ve been married for less time it is worth exploring with your solicitor if there are different legal remedies for your particular situation.

  • What are the circumstances?
  • If your spouse has had an affair, acted badly towards you or you’ve have been living separately for a number of years you will need to detail these issues in your court application. It is good to have your reasons thought through before you speak to your solicitor.

  • Are there children involved?
  • Your solicitor can help navigate child care, contact arrangements and maintenance payments, so have details on hand of any current arrangements and whether these are working.

  • Is there property or finances to consider?
  • Have details of any property and your financial position ready to share with your solicitor.

  • How much will it cost?
  • The costs can vary depending on the complexity of the case. We offer a free 30-minute consultation during which any fees will be explained clearly.

Divorce in three-steps – how your solicitor will help if you are seeking a divorce:

  1. Application for divorce
  2. Your solicitor will advise you on the best way forward and draft the divorce petition. Once the petition has been issued by the court, your solicitor will handle all paperwork and contact with the court, taking away the burden of dealing with the legal formalities.

  3. Decree nisi
  4. If your spouse agrees to the divorce a decree nisi will be issued without the need for you to go court. Your solicitor will correspond with your spouse or their solicitor and be there to assist you.

  5. Decree absolute
  6. Your lawyer can apply for decree absolute six weeks after the decree nisi. This is the legal document that ends your marriage. Once you get the decree absolute, you are divorced and free to marry again if you wish.

How long does divorce take?

On average the whole divorce process takes four to six months, but may take longer depending on the circumstances. We know that divorce doesn’t always run smoothly but we have the experience to spot issues that might escalate, and will advise you at every turn.

Divorce Dictionary


The person applying for the divorce


The other party


The court form used to apply for divorce

Decree nisi

A court order stating the date on which a marriage will end unless a good reason not to grant it is produced

Decree absolute

The final court order officially ending a marriage, enabling either party to remarry

Ancillary matters

Issues relating to the breakdown of the marriage that need to be decided, such as the division of property assets and child custody. This can be done though the courts or directly between the parties

Please note that these guides are for informational purposes only, and do not constitute legal advice. You can contact one of our expert consultant lawyers using the form below.

Joanna Abrahams
Joanna Abrahams


“We know that divorce doesn’t always run smoothly but we have the experience to spot issues that might escalate, and will advise you at every turn. Having a professional on hand gives you peace of mind that everything is in order, leaving you free to live your life.

“To ensure a smooth transition make sure you talk through all issues with your solicitor, and have as much detail to hand about the marriage as possible, from significant dates to details of shared assets.”

Enquire now