As we draw closer to the introduction of no-fault divorce on Wednesday 6th April, what should you do if you have already begun your divorce application and what is the deadline for applications before the new laws come into force?
Well, this week the government provided key dates and cut off points for existing applications to proceed under existing law, and advised that there will be a period of 5 days where divorce applications will be closed while we transition to no-fault divorce.
If you have already started your digital divorce application
If you have begun an application using the current digital service and you want current divorce law to apply, your application must be submitted by 4pm on Thursday 31st March 2022.
If you have already started your paper divorce application
If you’ve started completing a paper application form and you want current divorce law to apply, the court must have received it by 4pm on Thursday 31st March 2022.
If you’re sending it in the post, you’ll need to make sure it reaches the court by that date.
What if I miss the deadline?
Any digital or paper applications received after the deadline risk being rejected meaning applicants will have to begin the process again under the new laws when they come into force on Wednesday 6th April.
Closed to applications
The current digital and paper service for divorce applications will be closed from Thursday 31st March – Tuesday 5th April 2022 to allow for the transition.
Urgent applications will be accepted, and issued where possible, if received by post or email, before 4pm on the Tuesday 5th April.
If you’re submitting your urgent application by email, you can use this address: [email protected] (please note this inbox will not be monitored after 4pm on Tuesday 5th April 2022).
What if you haven’t started your divorce application yet?
It can take time to get the right documents together for your application. So, if you haven’t started an application yet, you may want to wait until the new services are available from Wednesday 6th April.
Summary of key dates
- Digital applications must be submitted by 4pm on Thursday 31st March
- Paper applications must be received by the court by 4pm on Thursday 31st March
- From 4pm 31st March to Tuesday 5th April, neither the digital service or the courts will accept new divorce applications
- From Wednesday 6th April 2022, the new paper and digital services will be available.
You can find out more on the government website.