What Documents Do You Need to File for a Divorce?

To file for a divorce, it is important that you have the right documentation prepared and completed. 

At VM Family Law, we can help with your divorce, ensuring that you have all necessary documents ready.  

Will a solicitor help with the documents in a divorce?

While petitioning for a divorce may seem stressful, there isn’t as much paperwork as you may think. However, it is essential that you keep your divorce papers safe and organised. 

A solicitor will help to keep you updated with any changes to the process and inform you about any more forms that you need to fill in, such as if your spouse is contesting and you are required to go to court. 

What paperwork is needed in a divorce?

In order to file for a divorce, you will need to submit a small amount of paperwork. The paperwork includes:

  • Divorce petition, known as a D8 petition
  • Your marriage certificate 
  • Court fees or exemption forms 

Do you need your original marriage certificate for a divorce?

Yes, the court will need to see a copy of your original marriage certificate for a divorce. If you don’t have it, you will need to contact the Registrar of Births, Deaths and Marriages for a certified copy. You can apply at the nearest registry office to where you got married, and you will have to pay a small fee. 

Photocopies of marriage certificates will not be accepted by the court; even if they have been certified by a family and divorce lawyer. 

If you were married outside of England and Wales, a certified copy from the country you were married in will be required. If the certificate is not in English, you will need to submit a translation alongside the marriage certificate. 

What documents do you need to provide for a divorce?

As we’ve explained, you will need your original marriage certificate. Listed below are the other documents you will need to provide when filing for a divorce:

Divorce petition 

One of the main pieces of paperwork you will need is a Divorce Petition, also known as a D8 form. On this form you will need to provide your full name and address, alongside your spouse’s name and address details too. You will also need to specify where you got married. 

The reason why you are filing for divorce will also need to be given, and whether you intend to claim any divorce costs from your spouse. We have a blog all about the different grounds for divorce in the UK to help with this.

Three copies of your divorce petition will be submitted to the court when you file for divorce. A fourth copy will be needed if you plan to name someone where adultery has been specified as the reason for divorce. 

Court fees and exception forms 

There is a court fee payable when filing your divorce petition. However, if you’re on a low income or benefits, you could be exempt from paying court fees or entitled to some money off. 

To apply for the fee exemption of reduction, you will need to complete Form Ex160 and the related documents.

Once all of the above has been submitted, you will then be eligible to file for divorce. The divorce paperwork should be sent to the court of your closest home address in case you need to visit in relation to any financial issues. 

What paperwork do you need when responding to a divorce petition?

If your spouse has sent you a divorce petition and you agree to it, you only have to sign the ‘acknowledgement of service’ form and post it to the courts. 

You don’t need to include any paperwork, but you will need to post the form within 8 days of receiving it. 

If you disagree to the terms or you don’t want a divorce, you will still need to fill out the same form, but use the section where you’re defending against the divorce. This also needs to be posted within 8 days, alongside an answer to the divorce petition form explaining your reasoning. This will cost £245.

Divorce support with a Family Law Solicitor

Filing for a divorce may feel like a lonely process, but it doesn’t have to be. At VM Family Law, we have a specialist team of family divorce solicitors who can give you the support, guidance and peace of mind you need to ensure that your divorce paperwork is prepared and filed correctly with the court.

For assistance with your divorce process, contact our team today to see how we can help you.

Our goal is to help our clients solve their family legal matters as smoothly as possible.

Wiselaw logo

VM Family Law is listed as a Leading Lawyer by Wiselaw

Authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority – VM Family Law Ltd - No. 809780

VM Family Law Ltd is a limited company, registered in England and Wales. Company Number:12777521. VAT Number:379075066

Website: Dylan Robinson © 2024. VM Family Law Ltd. All rights reserved. | Privacy policy