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About civil partnership dissolution

How do I get a dissolution?

This is obtained by filling in a form called a “petition” and taking it to either your nearest, or any, Civil Partnership Proceedings Family Court, or alternatively the Principal Registry in London.

The Civil Partnership Proceedings Family Court situated nearest to our offices is in Birmingham.

When can I get a dissolution?

You must have been in a civil partnership for more than one year before issuing a petition for dissolution.

Do I have to explain why I want a dissolution?

Yes, you must be able to prove to the Court that you have grounds (reasons) for saying that your civil partnership is at an end. The Court will use the expression that the civil partnership has “irretrievably broken down”. The Court will accept one or more of the following grounds as proof:

  • That the behaviour of your civil partner has been so bad that you can no longer bear to live with them;
  • That you have both lived apart for at least two years and he or she agrees to a dissolution;
  • That you have both lived apart for at least five years; or
  • That you were deserted by your civil partner at least two years ago.

Do I have to live in this country to get a dissolution here?

You or your civil partner must both have your permanent homes (“domiciles”) in England or Wales when the petition is started; or

You and your civil partner must both be living in England or Wales when the petition is started; or

You and your civil partner must both have had your last home in England or Wales and one of you must still be living in either of these countries when the petition is started; or

Your civil partner must be living in England or Wales when the petition is started; or

You must have been living in England or Wales for at least a year on the day the petition is started; or

You must have your permanent home in England or Wales and
have been living in either of these countries for at least six months on the day the petition is started.

Where none of the above apply you may still get a dissolution in
England and Wales if either you or your civil partner are domiciled in England or Wales; OR

You and your civil partner were registered as civil partners in England or Wales and it is in the interests of justice for the Court to assume jurisdiction in this case.

Will I have to attend a Court hearing?

If you can agree with your civil partner about financial support, property and the arrangements for any children, you may not have to attend a Court hearing at all.

You may have to attend a Court hearing if you ask the Court to make an order for financial support or cannot agree about the arrangements for any children.

How much will the dissolution cost?

You may have to pay a fee for the following:

  • To start your petition;
  • The document which shows your civil partnership has been dissolved, the final order;
  • Any applications for financial support or about any children.

Will I need a copy of my Civil Partnership Certificate?

Yes. You will have to give a copy to the Court when you start your
petition. It will be kept on the Court file. The copy must not be a photocopy.

If you have any questions or need any further advice, please do not hesitate to contact us and we will do our best to accommodate you.

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