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The X Factor – What Are The Grounds For Divorce?

International Divorce
Published: 20th February 2018 - Category: Divorce Process - Author: Lynne Bastow

Grounds For Divorce

Jennifer Aniston, Marion Collitard and even Sinita have been dragged into the impending uncoupling of Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie.

Pitt met Jolie in 2005 on the set of Mr and Mrs Smith. He was still married to Aniston at the time.

There were then, and are now rumours of infidelity.

Angelina filed papers citing irreconcilable differences as the reason for the split and asking for physical custody of the couple’s six children – Maddox, age 15; Pax, aged 12; Zahara, aged 11; Shiloh, aged 10; and twins Vivienne and Knox, aged eight.

Divorce in England and Wales

What then are the grounds for divorce? Divorce law across the Pond is different. They have the term – irreconcilable differences. In England and Wales there is a common misconception that there are 5 grounds for divorce. This is not technically true there is only one basis for a divorce. That being that you have been married for at least at year and that the marriage has broken down irretrievably. It rests with the party who is filing for the divorce to demonstrate one of five different facts.  Those facts being:

1. Adultery – you must prove that your husband/wife has committed adultery. It must be proved that the spouse has had sexual intercourse with another party and you find it intolerable to live with them.  It cannot be your own adultery giving rise to the action. It is harder than anticipated to prove this fact and most Petitioners will choose instead to file under the fact of unreasonable behaviour.

2.  Unreasonable behaviour is the most common fact upon which to provide the ground for divorce.   You must demonstrate that your ex partner has behaved in such a way that you cannot reasonably expect to continue to live with them.  If the allegations of behaviour are serious such as physical violence then one or two allegations should be sufficient but if you are alleging a less severe fact such simply growing apart then you will have to put forward half a dozen or so points of reference.

3. 2 years separation – In this instance you have been separated from your previous partner for at least two years and you both agree to the divorce.

4. 5 years separation – you have been living apart from your spouse for at least 5 years then the other party does not need to consent.

5. Desertion. The least commonly used fact is where the spouse has actually deserted the Petitioner for at least two years.

The facts seem simple enough but the process can be stressful and complicated where there are children and entwined finances.  A specialist family solicitor can alleviate the obvious pressure and stresses surrounding a quite frankly not pleasant experience.  Get the right guidance as soon as you can. Your choice is crucial.


Lynne Bastow - Divorce Solicitor

Meet Lynne Bastow

With over 20 years experience, Lynne can provide excellent and valuable advice and has a friendly, positive approach towards all her clients, ensuring you get the best service possible. If you would like my help you can contact me here. Contact Lynne

Read Lynne's Books

If you need more information on divorce, Lynne has published two informative guides on divorce, which you can purchase from Amazon.

The Little Book of Divorce

The Little Book of Divorce

Buy on Amazon
The Little Book of Divorce Dilemmas

The Little Book of Divorce Dilemmas

Buy on Amazon


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