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Grounds for civil partnership dissolution

A condition for ending a civil partnership is that the relationship has irretrievably broken down due to four grounds:

  • Unreasonable behaviour
  • Desertion for a period of two years or more
  • Two years’ separation, with the partner’s consent
  • Five years’ separation, without the partner’s consent

Unlike divorce, you cannot use the grounds of adultery as the legal definition states that a sexual relationship between a man and a woman is required in order to qualify. If your partner has been unfaithful, then this would fall under the ‘unreasonable behaviour’ ground for dissolution.

Stages of dissolution

To begin you must complete the dissolution petition form (available online here).  This is then sent to the nearest court that deals with civil partnerships.

The next stage is a conditional order which is a document that states there is no reason why your civil partnership should not be dissolved.

Applying for a final order is the final stage as this document officially ends your civil partnership.

If the court is satisfied that things have been done properly, the final order will be granted.

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