No Fault Divorces – but!

On the 6th April the Divorce, Dissolution and Separation Act (2020), became law. It represents the biggest shake up in divorce law for more than half a century and ends the need for separating couples to apportion blame for the breakdown of their marriage.

Previously, one spouse was forced to make accusations about the other’s conduct, such as ‘unreasonable behaviour’ or adultery, or face years of separation before a divorce could be granted. This was regardless of whether a couple had made a mutual decision to separate.

The changes mean that a spouse, or a couple jointly, can now apply for divorce by stating their marriage has broken down irretrievably. It stops one partner from vindictively contesting a divorce and dragging out matters and adding to the expense. In some cases, domestic abusers can use their ability to challenge the process to further harm their victims.

This overdue change in the law must be seen as a positive move. However, we believe there is still a very important role for mediation in the divorce process, when couples are needing to settle financial matters and/or formalise child arrangements. The ‘blame game’ could still transfer to parenting issues (where children are involved) and the fair distribution of wealth and assets.

Mediation can help remove the stress in such situations and help couples to communicate in a calm and constructive fashion. Whilst not being able to provide Legal Aid mediation, we do offer very competitive rates and uses the income from this work to subsidise our important free work in the community.

Our two Family Mediators are fully qualified and accredited and one is able to offer Child Inclusive Family Mediation.

For free initial advice on any form of mediation feel free to contact us on 0300 200 0025 or email