Civil Partnership Dissolution Solicitors

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Civil partnerships have provided same-sex couples with legal recognition and rights similar to marriage for many years. Just like in any marriage, there may come a time when civil partners wish for a civil partnership to be dissolved. This process can be emotionally and legally complex. To help couples navigate the intricate legal procedures and ensure a fair and equitable resolution, civil partnership dissolution solicitors play a crucial role.

Our panel of family solicitors are on-hand to help you no matter your circumstances. If you would like more information on dissolving your partnership then please get in touch with us today to speak to an expert in this area of the law.

Understanding Civil Partnership Dissolution

Civil partnership dissolution is the legal process of ending a civil partnership. This involves resolving issues such as the division of assets, financial support, and arrangements for any children involved. Just as in divorce cases, civil partnership dissolution can be contentious and emotionally charged.

You can only apply to end a civil partnership when you have been in the partnership for at least a year, and the process of dissolution itself can take up to six months for both joint applications and sole applications.

Under the Dissolution and Separation Act 2020, you no longer need to prove any fault to apply for a dissolution of civil partnership or divorce for a married couple, reasons such as unreasonable behaviour, desertion and separation are no longer needed. Instead the parties simply need to state the partnership has irretrievably broken down.

You can apply to dissolve your civil partnership online, or can obtain expert legal advice from an experienced civil partnership dissolution solicitors to ensure all of the relevant documents are filed.

If the application is made by one party, then the receiving party must respond with an acknowledgement of service form within 14 days of receiving the dissolution application. Since April 2022 when the no fault divorces were introduced, it is very difficult to contest a divorce or civil partnership dissolution.

The Process

In England and Wales, the process of obtaining a civil partnership dissolution under the “no-fault” system involves several steps. Outlined below is a detailed overview of the process:

Eligibility

  • Time requirement: You must have been in the civil partnership for at least one year.
  • Jurisdiction: Either you or your partner must be habitually resident in England or Wales, or meet other specific jurisdictional requirements.

Filing the application

  • Application form: Complete the dissolution application form (Form D8) available on the UK Government website.
  • No-fault grounds: Under the no-fault system, you only need to state that the civil partnership has irretrievably broken down. No evidence or specific reason is required.
  • Court fee: Pay the required court fee, which is £593 (as of 2024). Fee exemptions or reductions may be available if you have a low income.

Serving the application

  • Service on respondent: The application must be served on your partner (the respondent). This can be done by the court or you can serve it personally. The respondent then has 14 days to acknowledge receipt of the application.

Acknowledgement of Service

  • Respondent’s response: The respondent should complete and return the Acknowledgement of Service form to the court, indicating whether they agree with the dissolution or not.
  • No contest: Under the no-fault system, there should generally be no need to contest the dissolution.

Conditional Order

  • Application for Conditional Order: After 20 weeks from the start of the proceedings (the date the application was issued by the court), you can apply for a Conditional Order (previously known as the Decree Nisi). This is done using Form D84.
  • Review by judge: A judge will review the paperwork to ensure everything is in order. If satisfied, the judge will grant the Conditional Order.

Final Order

  • Application for Final Order: Six weeks after the Conditional Order is granted, you can apply for the Final Order (previously known as the Decree Absolute). This is done using Form D36.
  • Final Dissolution: Once the Final Order is granted, your civil partnership is legally dissolved.

Additional considerations

  • Financial arrangements: It is advisable to sort out financial arrangements (Form A for a financial order) before applying for the Final Order. This includes division of assets, maintenance, and any other financial claims.
  • Children: If you have children, you will need to agree on arrangements for their care and support.

 

The Role of Civil Partnership Dissolution Solicitors

  • Legal Expertise: Civil partnership solicitors are legal professionals who specialise in family law, including dissolution cases. They are well-versed in the intricacies of civil partnership agreements and dissolution laws and regulations, making them invaluable guides through the legal process.
  • Objective Advice: During a dissolution, emotions can run high, and it can be challenging for the parties involved to make rational decisions. Solicitors provide objective advice and guidance to help clients make informed choices regarding property division, financial settlements, and child custody arrangements.
  • Mediation and Negotiation: Solicitors often act as mediators, facilitating discussions between the parties involved to reach amicable agreements. This can reduce conflict and minimise the need for court proceedings, saving time and money.
  • Drafting Legal Documents: One of the essential tasks of civil partnership dissolution solicitors is drafting legal documents, including the dissolution petition and financial settlement agreements. These documents must meet legal requirements and protect their clients’ interests.
  • Court Representation: In cases where negotiations fail to produce a settlement, solicitors represent their clients in court. They present the case, advocate for their clients’ rights, and ensure that all legal procedures are followed.
  • Emotional Support: Apart from their legal expertise, solicitors also provide emotional support to their clients during what can be a very challenging period. They offer a sympathetic ear and help clients stay focused on their legal objectives.
  • Child Custody and Support: When children are involved in a civil partnership dissolution, solicitors play a crucial role in establishing child custody and arrangements that prioritise the best interests of the children.

The Benefits of Hiring a Civil Partnership Dissolution Solicitor

  • Expert Guidance: Solicitors have in-depth knowledge of family law, ensuring that clients understand their legal rights and responsibilities.
  • Faster Resolution: Solicitors can expedite the dissolution process by navigating complex legal procedures efficiently.
  • Fair Settlements: With their negotiation skills, solicitors help clients achieve fair and equitable settlements in terms of property, finances, and child arrangements.
  • Reduced Stress: Having a solicitor by your side can alleviate much of the stress and emotional burden associated with a dissolution, allowing you to focus on rebuilding your life.

Why Choose Expert Family Law?

Our panel of friendly and professional family lawyers and civil partnership dissolution lawyers have the expertise and experience to deal with your case professionally and with empathy. They will guide you through the dissolution proceeding process, helping you to make the difficult decisions in an understanding, non-judgmental manner.

We ensure that the solicitors on our panel have the skills and experience required to assist on your legal case. We can assure you that your case will be dealt with in a compassionate and understanding manner.

Each solicitor we work with is authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA).

Our panel of solicitors and experienced family law firms will help you to navigate a range of issues in divorce, dissolution and separation, such as financial matters and will assist you in reaching an agreement on such issues.

Whether you are going through a dissolution of a civil partnership or need assistance with divorce proceedings, our panel of family law solicitors will provide pragmatic legal advice and assistance, guiding you through every step of the civil partnership dissolution process.

Get in touch today using the form at the top of the page to find out if a civil partnership dissolution solicitor from our panel could help on your case.

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