Is it right to introduce no fault divorce?

Resolution are to start a two year piece of research to inform the debate on no fault divorce. At the moment, if married couples have been separated for less than two years, they can only divorce on the basis of adultery or unreasonable behaviour. As you can imagine, this creates a tricky situation, as regularly one person has to agree to the divorce being started on their unreasonable behaviour. This can be very hard to stomach. Rarely will one person feel like the end of their marriage is based on their unreasonable behaviour alone.

So, should no fault divorce be introduced? On the one hand, this could help reduce acrimony, which must be in the best interests of the parties and any children involved. On the other hand, is this going to make divorce easier; people already quote the unhappy stat that one in three marriages ends in divorce.

In my opinion as a divorce solicitor, having to rely on unreasonable behaviour or adultery rarely deters people from starting divorce proceedings, it just makes a difficult situation a bit more difficult, so I know which side I’ll be on. It is slightly disappointing that it’s anticipated that the research to inform the debate is anticipated to take two years.

We are concerned that petitions that rely on apportioning some blame risk creating or inflaming conflict and thus undermining the opportunity for people to resolve disputes outside of court.