You can give 1 of the following 5 reasons for a divorce - the court calls these ‘facts’.
Your husband or wife had sex with someone else of the opposite sex, and you can no longer bear to live with them.
It doesn’t count as adultery if they had sex with someone of the same sex. This includes if you’re in a same-sex marriage.
You can’t give adultery as a reason if you lived with your husband or wife for 6 months after you found out about it.
Your husband or wife behaved so badly that you can no longer bear to live with them.
This could include:
- physical violence
- verbal abuse, eg insults or threats
- drunkenness or drug-taking
- refusing to pay for housekeeping
Your husband or wife has left you:
- without your agreement
- without a good reason
- to end your relationship
- for more than 2 years in the past 2.5 years
You can still claim desertion if you have lived together for up to a total of 6 months in this period.
You have lived apart for more than 2 years
You can get a divorce if you’ve lived apart for more than 2 years and both agree to the divorce.
Your husband or wife must agree in writing.
You have lived apart for more than 5 years
Living apart for more than 5 years is usually enough to get a divorce, even if your husband or wife disagrees with the divorce.