Before going ahead with divorce proceedings or judicial separation proceedings, you must consider whether your relationship is definitely over and to also consider the option of mediation.
The previous article on mediation and separation dealt with the option of parties simply physically separating, but also issues that both parties should be aware of in the event that they go down this route.
This article and the upcoming articles will deal with each option separately however should not be intended to constitute legal advice and you should contact a person fully qualified before you make any decisions.
A Judicial Separation is, in some ways, like a divorce. It does involve the Court process and issuing proceedings, however:
Unlike a divorce, it does not allow you to remarry; and
The Judicial Separation cannot be converted into a divorce.
Those that seek a Judicial Separation are generally:
Those who have not been married for one year and so cannot divorce (those that seek a divorce but be married for one year before issuing proceedings);
Those who may have a religious objection to divorce;
Those who may not believe that their marriage is completely over, but wish to take some action.
To obtain a Judicial Separation, the person issuing the proceedings (the Petitioner) does not need to show that the marriage has irretrievably broken down (as for a divorce), but must satisfy the Court on one of the following five facts:
That the other party has committed adultery;
That the behaviour of the other party is unreasonable;
That the other party has deserted the Petitioner for at least 2 years;
That the parties have lived apart for at least 2 years and both parties consent to the proceedings;
That the parties have lived apart for at least 5 years (the other parties consent to the proceedings is not required).
The procedure for obtaining a Judicial Separation is much like the procedure for obtaining a divorce (which has not been discussed), save that there is a pronouncement of a decree of Judicial Separation.
The information provided in this article is not intended to constitute legal advice and you should take full and comprehensive legal advice on your individual circumstances by a fully qualified Solicitor before you embark on any course of action.
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