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A basic guide to divorce

The divorce process can seem very complicated and includes many specialist legal terms and procedures, often in Latin.

This can make divorce seem very complicated. However, at FAMILY MEDIATION 1 we wish to make separation and divorce as simple as possible. We are here to advise you and to make sure that you understand every step of the procedure.

In order to do so, we have drawn up a list of the most common questions that people ask us when they are considering a divorce.

This simple guide will tell you what you need to know about divorce and the divorce process.

Must I undertake mediation?

You should normally attend MIAMS (Mediation Information and Assessment Meetings) as this is a requirement of the court. There are a number of technical exceptions to this, but it is normally the case that mediation is required.

Your mediator will be required to produce form FM1 which is required by a court before they will progress your form further. We can help you to consider MIAMS meetings and the FM1 form.

What is mediation?

Mediation is a process where the partners meet to discuss areas of disagreement regarding assets and child considerations.

It may be that there are few, or no disagreements, in which case the mediation procedure will be short. In very rare cases, where there are no disagreements, there is no requirement for mediation.

What are grounds for divorce?

Grounds for divorce are conditions which are acceptable for a divorce. There are a number of grounds which are acceptable.

In most cases, unacceptable behaviour are grounds for divorce. However, these will need to be considered by a court. You will need to take sound advice on whether there are acceptable grounds for divorce.

How much does a divorce cost?

There are two ways to approach this question. One is that if you decide to act in a counter-productive way then it can cost a lot of money and it can take a lot of time.

If you are not prepared to make an agreement with your former partner on issues of property and finance then it may led to a legal process that involves conflict and disagreement.

This can lead to substantive legal costs and a lot of time spent with solicitors and, potentially, in court. On the other hand, if you decide to act in a reasonable manner then the process can be relatively straightforward and not very expensive.

By investigating, and undertaking, mediation, to arrive at a sound and agreeable position with your partner that you mutually agree on, you can find that the divorce can be over quite quickly and at minimal cost.

What about finances and other property?

Technically, a divorce simply means that the marriage has ended. There needs to be a separate dispute about property and finance.

A court will only be involved in these considerations after you have obtained the Decree Nisi agreement. The costs involved with considering financial and property matters can be very onerous.

In some cases these costs can substantially reduce the value of your assets and property. To prevent this from occurring we advise all of our clients to consider mediation.

What about adultery?

This could count as a reasonable ground for divorce. However, your own adultery does not mean that you can pursue a divorce agreement. This will not be accepted by the court. See our low cost divorce package

Through mediation you can arrive at an agreed position on financial and property matters that can then be agreed by a court.

What is a separation?

Couples may decide to separate before they undertake a divorce. In this case, a separation agreement should be drawn up.

This agreement can help to reduce the time involved should you then with to undertake a divorce. A separation agreement usually involves taking into account financial and child maintenance consideration.

It is good practice to produce a separation agreement before divorce.

Will I have to explain my divorce to a judge?

It is unusual to have to appear in court to gain a divorce. In rare situations, when you can not reach agreement, you may have to appear in front of a judge.

How long should I be married before I get a divorce?

You should be married for at least 12 months before you get a divorce. This is a legal requirement.

Contact us for Family Mediation – 03300 101 354

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