Dissolving a Civil Partnership
The Civil Partnership Act 2005 enables same-sex couples, who register their partnership, to obtain legal recognition of their status and acquire almost the same rights as married couples.
As with married couples, their partnership can be ended only by a Court Order. ‘Dissolution’ is the term used to describe the termination of a civil partnership.
Who can start dissolution proceedings?
If you have been in a formal civil partnership for over a year and you either currently live or have lived in England or Wales during the preceding year then you can start dissolution proceedings. It does not matter where the civil partnership occurred.
How much does dissolution cost?
The dissolution will incur Court fees of £340 for the petition and £45 for the final order. After our initial meeting where we will have gained a good understanding of your personal circumstances we will give you an estimate of our fees.
Are the proceedings public?
You can rest assured that Court proceedings in family law are usually private. The public and press are only allowed in Court if the judge agrees. Courts are able to publish that a Dissolution Order has been pronounced but the information disclosed will be very limited.
When are financial issues dealt with?
In order to ease the financial stress that a relationship breakdown can bring we will work with you to put in place temporary arrangements to resolve immediate concerns. However it is not necessary for financial discussions to be completed by the time the dissolution is final.
In some circumstances we might advise you delay application for the Dissolution Order until a financial settlement is ordered. This only is to protect your rights.
What about the children?
A form, known as a ‘Statement of Arrangements’, is sent to the Court with the dissolution petition. This outlines the arrangements relating to your children. The law encourages partners to try and agree on these arrangements at the start, but if an agreement is not reached this doesn’t prevent the Dissolution from proceeding.