Civil Partnership Dissolution

Keeping your break-up civil

It is inevitable that some civil partnerships will break down. Since 2006, same sex couples have been able to formally register their relationship as a civil partnership, a legal status similar to marriage.

Relationship Breakdown

Since the end of 2019 civil partnerships have also become available to heterosexual couples who don’t want to go through a form of marriage.

This also means that if the relationship comes to an end you need to follow legal procedures similar to those for divorce.

On April 6th 2022 the law on civil partnership dissolution changed as it has for divorce.

Like a divorce, there is only one ground for the dissolution and that is that the civil partnership has irretrievably broken down.

However, under the previous law there were only four facts to cite for the breakdown as adultery is not applicable in civil partnership cases.

  • Unreasonable behaviour
  • Desertion for at least 2 years
  • 2 years separation with consent
  • 5 years separation, no consent required

But now under the new law all that is required is for at least one spouse to provide a legal statement to say that the civil partnership has broken down irretrievably.

The aim is to reduce the potential for conflict amongst separating couples by removing the ability to make allegations about the conduct of a spouse.

During a time when you are under emotional and personal strain, we will help you make informed legal decisions. Whether you want to start dissolution proceedings or have received dissolution papers, we will help you decide the next steps.

Family finances

Separating your finances after your civil partnership breaks down can be complicated.

You may need to consider claims for:
  • Maintenance
  • Transfers or sales of property
  • Dividing capital assets
  • Pension sharing orders

The court has a duty to be fair to both parties so they will also need to consider a number of factors, including the welfare of any children under the age of 18 and all the circumstances of your case.

Where possible we encourage you to resolve financial issues amicably without going to court. This is quicker, less stressful and will incur lower legal costs. When you have reached an agreement, we will prepare a Consent Order to make it legally binding.

You can still come to a voluntary agreement even after court proceedings have started.

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