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Divorce Process


Where am I in the divorce process?

    • Petition Issued

      • Petition and ‘Acknowledgment of Service’(AoS) form sent to Respondent by 1st class post.
      • The Respondent is requested to complete & return this form to the Court within 7 days.
      • Please note the Court will not chase the Respondent for the completed form.

      Had no response from respondant?

    • AoS received by the Court

      • Petitioner sent a copy with their Application for Decree Nisi forms D84 & D80.
    • Applying for Decree Nisi

      • Complete forms D84 & D80. The AoS must be attached and marked “A” if signed by Respondent – no fee required.
      • Returned Application is referred to Judge.
      • Please allow a minimum of 4 weeks for the Court to process this Application; refer to Why haven’t I heard anything?

      Why has my Decree Nisi application been refused?

    • Decree Nisi (DN) Hearing Date

      • When Judge has approved Application, letter confirming date of DN hearing is sent to both parties; 4 weeks notice usually given.
      • No need to attend hearing unless there are objections. e.g. Claim for Divorce Costs
    • Applying for Decree Absolute (DA)

      • Petitioner: D36 & no fee required, received no earlier than 6 weeks and 1 day after Decree Nisi.
        • D36 sent out with DN Certificate
        • Court processed DA on day of receipt
      • Respondent: can apply with D11, D36 and £155 fee received by Court no earlier than 3 months after the 6 weeks and 1 day has expired. A hearing may be required and therefore transferred to a local Court.
      • This is the final part of the divorce process.
    • No response from Respondent?

      It may be longer than the stated 14 days before receiving the AoS due to Court workloads; please refer to Why haven’t I heard anything?

      The Petitioner may apply to the Court for the following:-

      • Bailiff Service: D89 & £110 fee. If Bailiff is successful, the Petitioner will be able to apply for Decree Nisi.
      • Deemed Service: D11 & £50 fee. The Petitioner can apply to the Court for the divorce papers to be considered as having been received by the Respondent.
      • Dispense with Service: D11, D13B & £50 When the Petitioner has no knowledge of the Respondent’s whereabouts.

      See Court Leaflet D184 for more information

      Note. For any of the above, evidence may be required in support of the application.

    • Why has my Decree Nisi application been refused?

      Judge not satisfied with application – further information & instructions will be sent to the Petitioner

      Note. Resubmitted applications for Decree Nisi will join the back of the application queue and will mean a delay in the divorce process

    • Why haven’t I heard anything?

      Due to variable workloads, timescales for processing individual forms and applications may change.

      The Court do not confirm receipt of forms or when they have been passed to the Judge for consideration.

      Please do not duplicate any emails or letters to Court – The Court will answer as soon as possible.