2022 date for new divorce law implementation

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Following the successful campaign by Resolution that culminated in the passing of the Divorce, Dissolution and Separation Act, Resolution continues to engage and influence the MoJ on divorce reform.

The plan remains to implement no-fault divorce from 6 April 2022 and it is currently (as of December 2021) expected that the rules and guidance on the costs procedure will be published by early February 2022 at the latest.

It was announced in June 2021 that the Divorce, Dissolution and Separation Act 2020, will not come into force until 6 April 2022, and not autumn 2021 as the government originally planned, despite it receiving royal assent a year ago. This date is later than originally indicated, and we understand this is to allow time for the necessary IT changes to be made to HMCTS’s online divorce systems. However, the 6th April 2022 is now fixed as a matter of Parliamentary record, rather than the indicative timetable previously being worked towards.

This means that ending a marriage without legal blame at the request of just one partner will come into effect from 6 April 2022 if that is how they want to divorce.

As it currently stands, the divorce law in force dating from the 1970’s requires a period of 2 years separation before a divorce can be granted by consent. If you haven’t been separated for 2 years the law requires reasons of fault to be relied upon such as adultery or unreasonable behaviour.

A couple can be divorced after five years separation if one declines to end the marriage.

Talk to our trusted and caring family law solicitors for advice specific to your circumstances if you are looking to separate from your partner, or you have already separated and want to take the next step to divorce proceedings.

You can contact our family law solicitors at our offices in York, Selby and Ryedale.