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Resolution Campaigns for ‘No Fault’ Divorces

Rayhana Kausar, Graduate Chartered Legal Executive in Astle Paterson’s Family Department discusses Resolution’s Campaign for ‘No Fault’ Divorces.

As set out in the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973 the sole ‘ground’ on which a divorce may be obtained by either party to a marriage is that the marriage has broken down irretrievably.

That ‘ground’ may be established only by proof of one or more of five ‘facts’. Section 1 of the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973 confirms that the five ‘facts’ are:-

“ (a) that the respondent has committed adultery and the petitioner finds it intolerable to live with the respondent;

(b) that the respondent has behaved in such a way that the petitioner cannot reasonably be expected to live with the respondent;

(c) that the respondent has deserted the petitioner for a continuous period of at least two years immediately preceding the presentation of the petition;

(d) that the parties of the marriage have lived apart for a continuous period of at least two years immediately preceding the presentation of the petition (hereafter in this Act referred to as “two years’ separation”) and the respondent consents to a decree being granted;

(e) that the parties to the marriage have lived apart for a continuous period of at least five years immediately preceding the presentation of the petition.”

Resolution states that “Divorce and separation is often a time of conflict and heartache. It puts families under tremendous pressure and there are all sorts of things to sort out – how to manage the finances and how to make sure that the impact on any children is minimised as far as possible … present divorce law makes things worse by forcing couples to blame each other unless they can wait two years to get their divorce.”

After reading the campaign literature Rayhana noted that “if the law was altered to allow a married person to seek a divorce without having to blame their spouse of wrong-doing then it is likely that much heartache could be saved – both to the parties involved and any children.”

Should you wish to discuss issues concerning a separation from your partner with Rayhana Kausar, Graduate Chartered Legal Executive in Astle Paterson’s Family Department, please contact her on 01283 531366 or by way of email at rkausar@astlepaterson.co.uk

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