Primitive as it may seem, you still cannot get divorced in this country without blaming the other party for a matrimonial fault, unless you have been separated for a minimum of two years.
There have been many rumblings behind the scenes for a long time to try and reform this situation and at long last, there is a Private Members Bill on No Fault Divorce, making its way through the House of Commons.
The family lawyers association Resolution, which represents 6,500 family lawyers, has got its weight behind supporting the Bill, which would have the effect of not needing to prove one of the spouses committed adultery, or behaved unreasonably, which requires all sorts of allegations of nasty conduct in order to satisfy the divorce criteria.
The latest figures show that 60% of divorce cases were based on adultery or unreasonable behaviour although when interviewed by YouGov last year, 27% of those who cited adultery or unreasonable behaviour admitted this was not the real reason for the divorce but they chose it as the easiest technical option. In other words, thousands of couples every year are having to fabricate blame in order to meet current divorce law requirements.
The objective is to change the law so that a divorce can be progressed “where one or both of the parties to a marriage give notice that their relationship has broken down irretrievably and one or both of them are still of that view six months later”.
It sounds simple enough, so we will see how it goes in the next few months.