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Do you feel like your marriage or civil partnership has broken down beyond all repair? Want help starting divorce proceedings? Or do you just want to separate? Ending a relationship is a big decision, and not one you should take lightly. For that reason, it’s best to seek expert help.


"The service I received was very good. From initial contact in handling my divorce, dealing with my calls and meetings at the office through to the professionalism displayed by Viv Clough and the way she handled my affiars and kept me informed. I was recommended to Bendles and I would use again."

- Bell, Carlisle

Are you looking for divorce and separation solicitors? Bendles has been helping the people of Carlisle for over 200 years. We’ll help you bring your marriage to an end as amicably as possible. Get in touch today to arrange a legal consultation. Call us on 01228 522215 to book one now.

Getting divorced may seem like a huge struggle. The prospect of going to court, having to divide up belongings and uncertainty around children don’t make it the most inviting possibility. But you shouldn’t be put off by the difficult legal process.

Fortunately, compassionate solicitors at Bendles will help you have a less painful divorce. We’ll help you every step of the way from making your application for divorce to sorting out childcare and finances afterwards.

Grounds for Divorce

Before you file for divorce you’ll have to have been married for at least a year. After a year, there are five reasons for divorce. You can cite any of the following as grounds to end your marriage:

  • Divorce on grounds of adultery - this is marriage breakdown due to your partner having sex with someone else of the opposite sex. Sex with another person doesn’t count as adultery if it’s with someone of the same sex. This is true even of same-sex marriages.
  • Divorce for unreasonable behaviour - when your spouse’s behaviour is so bad you can no longer tolerate living with them. This includes things like: violence, verbal abuse, alcohol or substance abuse, refusal to pay for house upkeep and numerous other matters.
  • Divorce for Desertion - this is when your husband or wife has left you without your agreement, without good reason and for more than 2 years.
  • You’ve lived apart for over 2 years - if your spouse agrees, you can get a divorce for living apart for this period.
  • You’ve lived apart for over 5 years - in this case, you’re able to get a divorce even if your partner disagrees – there are two defences to hold up Decree Absolute.

Not sure if you meet any of these conditions?

If you come to Bendles for a consultation, we’ll help you decide if you have grounds for divorce.

We offer collaborative law. So you can come to an agreement without having to go to court.

Collaborative law is when you and your former partner communicate with your lawyers at various round table meetings. With this process, you can try to come to a fairer, more rational decision, and hopefully avoid the court process.

What if I can’t afford divorce?

In some instances of domestic violence or child abduction, you may be eligible for legal aid. You may also be able to apply for legal aid to pay for mediation. Check here to see if you can get legal aid to help with divorce. If you’re still not sure, come see us.

Not ready to go down the divorce route?

In most cases if you and your partner haven’t lived apart, separation should come first.

Whether you want to separate with a view to divorce, or just to see how things go, Bendles will guide you through the separation process.

To make things clear between you and your partner, we’ll help you come up with a separation agreement which if fair should be upheld by the court and/or given considerable weight. This is a written agreement that outlines financial, property and childcare arrangements. You’re also able to consider other conditions.

Having this kind of agreement in writing makes the separation a lot more clear.

Don’t let the legal side of divorce stand in the way of what you want. Get in touch with Bendles today to find out how we can make divorce simple for you. Contact our family law specialist, Viv Clough, to arrange a consultation today.

Viv is a member of the Law Society’s Family Law Accreditation Scheme, an Accredited Specialist member of Resolution and has completed Collaborative Law training.

Call us on 01228 522215 for a faster response.

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Viv Clough Profile

Viv Clough

Specialising in all aspects of Family Law but predominantly divorce and finance cases and pensions.


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Judy Bell Profile

Judy Bell

Judy has more than 30 years’ experience in divorce and separation settlements.


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