In this interview, Carmen Hudson of Divorcebox, explains how you can file for divorce online:
Divorce online is exactly like any other divorce except that is done online.
Going through divorce is a very difficult experience but in the case where both partners agree to the divorce, the divorce process itself can be reduced to a procedural exercise and that’s where online divorce comes in.
If you prefer to go down the avenue of alternative dispute resolution, you can still instigate your divorce online and deal with the paper work online and reduce that side of it, that element of it to a procedural exercise.
Can I get all necessary divorce papers online in order for me to be able to file for divorce online?
Yes, they are absolutely free online from her Majesty’s Court website. They are free so never, pay for divorce papers or divorce forms. You can even download them for free as a pack from our website. There are people who sell packages which include the divorce papers but what you need to know is what you’re paying for. That would be my advice to you.
Online divorce is about choice.
Is online divorce for those with within the low income bracket? That’s the picture that we often get.
That is the picture that they do portray but that is not the case. It’s like in the case of family mediation as a divorce process, it’s for anybody but it’s not necessarily suitable for everybody. If the divorce is likely to be defended and hearings necessary, online divorce wouldn’t necessarily be suitable in that instant.
But in terms of net worth, just recently we had Gary Lineker choosing to go through his divorce process using the divorce online route.
This is a good example of how a high net worth individual has chosen to go through the divorce process by taking the non-adversarial route, non-contentious route, because it helps shine the light on the fact that you can do it, without involving the lawyers, without it being a messy divorce.
So finances do not affect whether or not you can have an online divorce, what is important is that you can agree to divorce with your ex-partner. You can sort out houses, finances, children through other avenues.
So to file for divorce online, it needs to be an uncontested divorce.
Can you start your divorce online at anytime or do the grounds for divorce still hold?
Online divorce, DIY divorce, divorce through a solicitor are all the same thing. All the exact same application forms, all the same rules apply as well as the reasons and the facts that you use to prove the divorce are exactly the same as you would use if you were going through the divorce process through a solicitor or via DIY divorce.
It all comes down to how you chose to file for divorce the rest stays the same including the grounds for divorce.
Is going through the divorce online quicker ?
The divorce process is in the hands of divorce centres. So it will depend on your regional divorce centre and some regions are slightly better than other regions.
They will dictate, the timetable and schedule of any divorce be it DIY, be it online divorce be it through a solicitor.
The difference with an online divorce is that you can instigate and initiate the divorce yourself from home, so you’re in control of the timetable. So you’re not waiting for solicitors and you don’t have to go to a solicitor’s office.
So this is an advantage to be gained. It’s the convenience of doing it at home and at your own pace.
So you can find the divorce papers online, you can file for divorce online, you don’t have to wait for the forms to arrive, you don’t have to go out and meet someone and you don’t have to cough up a lot of money.
You can print the forms out, attach your cheque, send them to your divorce centre and it can be as simple as that.
I don’t want to say that divorce is easy, I don’t like that whole easy divorce thing, because the divorce process itself can be devastating for people, but the actual application, can be a procedural exercise.
What about clean break? How does online divorce help.
Financial matters and matters in relation to children and matters in relation to property, are separate to but run alongside the divorce application.
So the divorce application is one application to the court then if need be, you can make a separate application in relation to the children and then you can make a financial application. They are parallel but they are not all on the same form.
Mediation works very well with online divorce.
What we find is people find that if they want to keep it out of the court and they want to go down the alternative dispute resolution path and they don’t want to put it in the hands of the judge, they can use a combination of online divorce and family mediation. That puts the family and the spouses at the heart of the decision making process. So you can actually reach a compromise with the mediation and also do your online divorce parallel to that.
Carmen Hudson (LLB) is a director and head of legal of operations at DivorceBox.com a online legal service provider specialising in online divorce (e-divorce).
After 15 years in dispute resolution she founded DivorceBox to offer a less intimidating alternative to traditional legal services.