To get a legal separation, you need to fill in a separation petition and send it to the court.
A legal separation allows you to live apart, without divorcing or ending a civil partnership.
You can ask for a legal separation for the same reasons you could file for a divorce, eg:
- unreasonable behaviour
However, you don’t need to show that the marriage has broken down irretrievably.
You may want a legal separation if:
- you have religious reasons against divorce
- you’ve been married less than a year
- you want time and space to work out if you want to end the marriage
Fill in a judicial separation petition - form D8.
Send 2 copies of the petition to your nearest divorce court, and keep your own copy. You need to include a certified copy of your marriage or civil partnership certificate when you send the form.
Getting a legal separation costs £365.
You may be able to get help with court fees if you’re on benefits or a low income.