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How much can I expect to have to pay for a divorce?

(4 Posts)
LionsnTigersnBears Wed 05-Oct-11 19:52:06

My situation is somewhat unusual. I separated from my husband in 1996 and haven't seen him since. I have been in a committed relationship with my partner for 10 years and we now have a toddler, so there is no question of a contest over the divorce. The problem is I have no idea where he is or how to go about finding him. I've used the standard electoral roll based searches and Tracesmart with no luck. I'd like to get a legal divorce now, in part because of my dd, but have no idea what kind of legal fee horror I'm looking at. Can anyone share experiences?


sneezecakesmum Wed 05-Oct-11 22:08:07

Have you tried facebook?

No idea how to divorce the invisible man!

STIDW Thu 06-Oct-11 01:27:06

It might be worth requesting a decree absolute search from the Principal Registry of the Family Division (google the address) to check if he has divorced you. The cost is £40, unless it has gone up recently.

To divorce you would need to show the court that every reasonable attempt to trace your husband has been made - checking the electrol role; contacting friends, family and last known employer; placing adverts in the newspapers etc. Once there is evidence all reasonable attempts have been made you can apply for dispensing with service and the court can grant a divorce anyway.

Costs depend on whether you do-it-yourself, use an online service or high street solicitor. Basically you get what you pay for. With all of them the court fee costs £300 unless you are on a low income and qualify for exemption. DIY involves doing some research and filling in forms. Online services will complete the forms for you for less than a couple of hundred pounds and a high street solicitor will give a more personal service and advice and charge according to the amount of work involved.

I would recommend doing as much tracing yourself as you can to help keep costs down and in his particular case paying a solicitor to ensure the forms are completed correctly.

Collaborate Thu 06-Oct-11 11:51:56

Court fees to issue a petition are now £340, with further fees due of £45 to £52.

A straightforward divorce should set you back around £1200-1500. Add on an unspecified amount if you want the solicitor to find the Scarlet Pimpernel.

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