Our Service

Our divorce solicitors understand that getting a divorce can be an emotional and confusing experience. Our family law team has extensive experience in dealing sensitively with complex legal issues following marriage breakdown. 

Fixed fee divorces

Subject to suitable assessment, our fixed fee divorce service is offered for uncontested divorces where a spouse does not 'defend' the divorce. This typically equates to 99% of all divorces in the United Kingdom.

Grounds for divorce

There is only one ground for divorce: that is that the marriage has irretrievably broken down.

This can be proven by one of five facts:

  • Adultery
  • Unreasonable behaviour
  • Desertion
  • 2 years separation with consent
  • 5 years separation

More information on the Grounds for Divorce.

Our dedicated team of divorce solicitors are all experts in providing specialist legal advice tailored towards your individual family needs. We are also able to offer legal advice dealing with:

Frequently Asked Questions

How much does a divorce cost?

In certain situations, you can claim your legal costs from your spouse within the divorce petition. For example, if the divorce is due to your spouse’s unreasonable behaviour or adulterous relationship.

We offer a fixed fee for uncontested divorces.

How do I get a divorce?

Either party to the marriage or civil partnership can start divorce proceedings. The party applying for a divorce or dissolution is known as the petitioner. The other spouse is known as the respondent. Divorce and dissolution proceedings are dealt with by the Family Court.

The divorce procedure can seem daunting: however, we have outlined the steps to take below:

Filing The Divorce Petition

  • The petitioner’s solicitor drafts the divorce petition in Form D8
  • The petitioner’s solicitor should notify the respondent’s solicitor of intention to start divorce proceedings at least seven days in advance and allow them time to approve the divorce petition. A petitioner in an adultery or unreasonable behaviour petition is usually awarded the costs of the divorce-( this does not include the costs of sorting out financial issues or issues about the children-) It is good practice to agree who should fund the costs of the divorce before the petition is issued and identify the amount to be claimed.
  • The petitioner’s solicitor files the divorce petition at court, enclosing the original marriage certificate, a statement of reconciliation in Form D6 and a court fee of £550.If you are on a low income, you may be eligible to apply for a fees exemption certificate. To see if you are meet the financial criteria, see https://www.gov.uk/get-help-with-court-fees
  • The court posts the petition to the respondent, enclosing notice of proceedings which explains the divorce
  • The respondent has 7 days to return the acknowledgement of service, in which they confirm whether they consent to the divorce
  • Once this is received, the petitioner’s solicitor can apply for the Decree Nisi in Forms D84 & D80 (A)- ( E )
  • Six weeks and one day after the Decree Nisi is pronounced, the petitioner’s solicitor can apply for the Decree Absolute in Form D36, which will terminate the marriage. It is not good practice to terminate a marriage unless finances are agreed, as termination of the marriage affects pension rights, inheritance rights and taxation.

The vast majority of divorces are undefended. Most petitions are based upon unreasonable behaviour, as sometimes it can be difficult to prove adultery, unless the respondent admits it has taken place. Unfortunately, it is not currently possible to issue divorce proceedings immediately after marriage breakdown unless you rely upon your spouse’s adultery or unreasonable behaviour as the reason for that relationship breakdown. The basis for the divorce does not impact upon how money is divided; nor does it affect how much time the children spend with each parent.

Identify The Grounds For Divorce

There is only one ground for the divorce, and that is that the marriage has irretrievably broken down. The marriage has broken down irretrievably in five ways:-

  • The respondent’s adultery
  • The respondent’s unreasonable behaviour
  • The respondent’s desertion
  • You have been separated for a continuous period of two years AND the respondent consents to the divorce
  • You have been separated for a continuous period of five years

How long does it take to get a divorce?

The Typical Timeframe?

Due to the reduction in number of Family Courts in England & Wales in recent years, it can take between four to six months to get a divorce. However, it is not good practice to terminate a marriage until finances are resolved. This is because the termination of the marriage affects inheritance rights, pension rights and taxation. It may therefore take between 6 months to 18 months to resolve all matters stemming for the breakdown of the marriage. How long the process takes depends on whether you are able to resolve financial matters yourselves through direct negotiation at home, in mediation or through solicitors, or whether it is necessary to issue court proceedings to resolve financial matters.

How long does the divorce process take?

The divorce process itself is relatively simple to navigate. It is more usual for divorcing couples to encounter issues over resolving financial matters or issues surrounding the children. In order to avoid increasing tension, it is sensible to agree the basis for the divorce before proceedings are issued by forwarding a draft petition beforehand. It is also prudent to agree who pays for the divorce before proceedings are issued. The petitioner in an adultery or unreasonable behaviour petition is entitled to the costs of the divorce (- not the costs of sorting out financial issues or issues affecting the children.) On average, the costs of the divorce are around £1270 including VAT and the court fee. Often costs are negotiated upon the basis that either:- 

  • the respondent agrees to pay a fixed portion of costs; or
  • the parties share the costs equally; or
  • the petitioner agrees to withdraw the costs application in the petition upon the basis that the divorce proceeds upon an undefended basis. 

The divorce process is a paper procedure. There is no need to attend court in relation to the divorce itself, unless costs are in dispute or the respondent defends the divorce. Only a tiny minority of cases are defended each year, due to the huge expense involved in disputing a divorce. From time to time, the respondent objects to funding the costs of the divorce incurred by the petitioner: that is why it is sensible to try to agree who bears the costs of the divorce and the extent of the costs to be claimed at the outset. 

If a respondent wishes to dispute the costs claimed by the petitioner, the respondent must give 14 days’ notice in writing to the court and to the petitioner ( or if represented to the petitioner’s solicitor) that the respondent intends to object to the application for costs. Upon receiving that notice, the court will make directions for the parties to attend court.

Objecting to paying the petitioner’s costs is not an effective way to prevent the divorce from being granted. If a respondent wishes to prevent the divorce from proceeding upon the basis of the petitioner’s petition, the respondent is required to return the acknowledgement of service to the court within 7 days of receiving the petition, indicating he/she intends to defend the divorce. 

21 days beginning with the day upon which the acknowledgement of service is required to be filed at court, the respondent must file an answer at court and also serve this upon the petitioner (or his or her solicitor if they are legally represented.) The court will then list the divorce for a case management hearing. Further evidence may be required from both parties to support their respective positions.

Defending divorce proceedings is expensive financially and emotionally. It causes delay and does not necessarily prevent the divorce from being granted. It increases hostility and causes emotional harm to the children and to the parties involved. 

Why Choose Myerson

Our divorce lawyers work closely with our other departments including: Corporate & Commercial, Property and Private Client teams to ensure that your financial needs are protected comprehensively and to ensure that you have the correct information to make the right decisions. Subject to suitable assessment, our fixed fee divorce service is offered for uncontested divorces. 

Based in Altrincham, Manchester, Cheshire, we are easily accessible for clients who live in the surrounding areas including Warrington, Macclesfield, Hale, Bowdon, Lymm, Knutsford, Alderley Edge, Wilmslow and Prestbury.

If you would like to talk to us, in confidence, about how we can help, please call us on 0161 941 4000, or contact us online.

Our Promise & Core Values

Our Promise

The Myerson Promise - Our Partners, team of lawyers and support staff commit to giving our clients more.

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To always give you clear, jargon-free advice.
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To be completely transparent about our fees from the outset.
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Progress every matter in an efficient and timely matter.

Our Core Values

Our core values are at the centre of everything we do.

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We are always professional but ensure that we are friendly and approachable.
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We are determined and enthusiastic about supporting our clients and our people.
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We willingly take responsibility and can be relied on to be commercial, effective and efficient.

Contact Us

Book your consultation using the below enquiry form. Alternatively, you can call us on

0161-941-4000

Meet Our Specialists

Home-grown or recruited from national, regional or City firms. Our specialists are experts in their fields and respected by their peers.

Jane Tenquist

Jane Tenquist

Jane is a Partner and Head of the Family Law Team

Nichola Bright

Nichola Bright

Nichola is a Senior Solicitor in our Family Law department

Sarah Whitelegge

Sarah Whitelegge

Sarah is a Solicitor in our Family Law department

Testimonials