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Bit lost with this DIY Divorce malarkey

(15 Posts)
BlumminNora Sun 18-Oct-15 11:16:42

My have filed for divorce against my husband. We discussed it beforehand (in fact I sent him a copy of the papers before I sent them off so he could see what I was saying) and he was in sheepish agreement. He's all loved up with someone else now so I expect he's equally eager to get things sorted.

It's relatively amicable. Finances/child arrangements are all in place already and have been for quite a while. We communicate quite well so to keep costs down I am attempting a DIY divorce, however I'm feeling a bit lost!

The online advice and guidance for what to do when, and what should be going on in the background is very vague so I'm constantly wondering if I'm supposed to be doing something or whether the ball's in the court's court grin

I sent off the application in early september.
I had a letter from the court to say the petition had been issued on 22nd September. My husband received his copy the same day as me and returned his acknowledgement of service the next day.

Since that, I've heard nothing hmm ... should I have?

I'm keen to get this sorted out now as it feels like a huge black cloud above my head but there I can't find anything to say what should be happening so I don't know if I ought to be chasing things or not.

Any help or advice from you lovely people would be much appreciated!

BlumminNora Sun 18-Oct-15 11:18:06

^^ I have ...
(starting the post with a typo is not a great start!)

Verypissedoffwife Sun 18-Oct-15 11:26:43

I did my divorce myself too using forms bought online. It was about 8/9 years ago now so a bit vague but it all went through without a hitch. I think you get the acknowledgement,then decree nisi then the degree absolute and I think it all happened automatically without any input from me once I'd sent off the initial forms.

Sorry I can't be of more help. I think my forms also came with guidance notes which detailed the process. Unfortunately I don't have them any more as the pc us long gone.

BlumminNora Sun 18-Oct-15 11:59:07

Thanks VPOW.
I'm hoping mine will be straightforward too.

I might call them tomorrow just to check - It's been about 4 weeks since he replied to the petition so I think I ought to have received a copy of the acknowledgement of service by now, but I don't know the estimated timescales.

It reminds me of being sat in a doctors waiting room for hours waiting your turn, wondering if you've been accidentally missed but being too polite to go to the reception desk to ask ... that's me all over! Mrs doormat (soon to be Mrs ex-doormat hopefully grin)

DivorceAlchemist Sun 18-Oct-15 13:40:33

Do give them a call in the morning to see what's happening. It can take some time, particularly with the recent changes where some court centres have moved. Much of this work is done by humans rather than a computer so if human error is causing a delay best to flag it up now!

They won't mind you

BlumminNora Sun 18-Oct-15 14:17:18

Thankyou DivorceAlchemist - I will.

It's strange really, we've been apart for a good while now and I whilst I didn't like how things were, it didn't cause me any sleepless nights. Now that I've started proceedings, that content feeling has suddenly shot out the window and I'm anxious for it to be done and dusted. It's a funny thing, the mind.

traviata Sun 18-Oct-15 14:23:57

you should receive a copy of his acknowledgement of service, then it's up to you to apply for the decree nisi.

Sounds as though the court either didn't receive his Ack of s, or have not sent it to you yet.

Chase the court, but remember it has all been centralised now and you may have to speak to someone in Bury St Edmunds rather than your local court.

The delays in some courts are enormous. Due to funding cuts and job losses, sometimes there is a 28 day backlog in even opening the post.

Minime85 Sun 18-Oct-15 16:05:32

I know there was a back log at court where I live when had mine done. Got first bits of paper work back like you say July time but didn't get heard in court until October when nisi was heard.

BlumminNora Tue 20-Oct-15 10:44:02

I called ... they hadn't received it and are reissuing the petition so he can re-respond. I did check with him that he had definitely returned it and he was adamant he had, so I'm giving him the benefit of doubt and assuming it got lost in the return post.

Good job I checked!

Minime85 Tue 20-Oct-15 22:51:15

We both sent all stuff back to courts with recorded delivery etc to be sure

traviata Tue 20-Oct-15 23:08:38

Recorded delivery isn't always the answer - in some courts there is no-one available to accept it, so it gets returned, whereas ordinary post just goes into the mailbox. Court counters have been closed so the staff just aren't there any more.

Minime85 Wed 21-Oct-15 14:56:55

Was just a suggestion. Not saying it's a guarantee. Guess only thing is hand delivery then grin

BlumminNora Thu 19-Nov-15 21:07:03

JUST received acknowledgement of service today! So that's 2 months from the petition being issued rather than the stated 14 days.

I have another question now if you don't mind - the paper work states I must wait 9 days from the respondent receiving the petition before returning the next set of forms, which is the application form for the decree nisi. Obviously, it's been much longer than 9 days since he had them so I assume I can just post these forms off first thing in the morning? (I dread to think how long this next stage will take given that the past 2 months were the quick 10-14 days bit) I'm fairly sure I understand that correctly but I don't want to send it off and them return it saying I need to wait 5 more days or something daft! Eager to keep the ball rolling now it's finally got going.

Crumbs ... this is a slow process. If anyone has ever managed to get to this stage within 9 days they must have the best lawyer in the land! I was secretly hoping to be divorced by Christmas (which is really not what I ever thought would be on my Christmas wish list sad) ... Maybe I'll make an Easter wish list instead.


goddessofsmallthings Fri 20-Nov-15 03:53:14

What date did your stbxh put on the acknowlegement of service? Regardless of what he may have told you, I suspect he's been dicking around.

In any event, reset your clock to 20 October as being the date on which your petition was issued and I would suggest you send your application for the Nisi by recorded delivery mail on Monday morning to arrive Tuesday - the reason being that the court's Monday postbag is usually full to overflowing with mail that's been sent at the end of the previous week.

If you haven't heard back by Friday 4 December, phone the court again and ask if a date has been set for pronouncement of the Nisi.

Given that 6 weeks and a day must elapse from the date the Nisi has been granted before you can apply for the Absolute, even if there hadn't been more than a month's delay in the proceedings you were being optimistic in hoping that you'd be a free woman by Christmas but, providing there's no further mishap with the paperwork, you are on track for a partial celebration by New Year or very shortly thereafter - Twelfth Night comes to mind. smile

shoeaddict83 Fri 20-Nov-15 10:10:15

Have to say my partner has been sending all his Divorce petition in recorded and the court has been fantastic - the petition was turned around the same day of receipt and within 2 days he had a letter to say his stbxw has received the petition, and same again when she returned the acknowledgement. East midlands unit seem to be great on turnaround times. So moving to nisi app within 2 weeks of filing original petition.

Just to add they have been separated 2 1/2 years and divorce is very simple as its 2 year consent, no assets as all already split/sold etc and kids already sorted too, and ive been with him a year before anyone thinks im the reason for the divorce!!!!

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