Reasons for Divorce

As part of the divorce proceedings, you will need to provide reasons for divorce.  You will discuss these reasons, (also called grounds for divorce), with your Solicitor and decide on the one that most closely represents your circumstances.

The law recognises five possible reasons for divorce:CFL office

  • Adultery
  • Unreasonable behaviour
  • Two years' “desertion”
  • Two years' separation (if you both consent to the divorce)
  • Five years' separation (whether or not the other party consents).


Your partner has committed adultery and you find this intolerable.  Adultery does not  have to be proved but it does have to be accepted or admitted by the other party to count as one of the reasons for divorce. If you continue to live with your partner for more than six months after you find out about the adultery, you cannot use this as grounds for divorce unless the adultery is continuing.

Unreasonable Behaviour

Your partner behaves in a way you cannot reasonably be expected to live with. You need to describe the behaviour you take exception to in the divorce Petition.  What is unreasonable is subjective, the point is that it is unreasonable to you. It does not have to be unreasonable to anyone else. As with adultery, if you continue to live with your partner for more than six months after the cited incident, you can no longer use it as a reason for CFL coffee mugdivorce.


Your partner has deserted you for a period of more than two years. Desertion means leaving your husband or wife without his or her agreement, and without good reason.

Two Years' Separation

Two years' separation is accepted as one of the reasons for divorce if both of you consent to the divorce and you have lived separately for more than two years. This is commonly referred to as a 'no-fault' divorce.

Five Years' Separation

If you have lived separately from your partner for more than five years, you can petition for a divorce even if your partner does not agree to it. They cannot defend this Petition but they can ask the Court not to grant the Final Decree because of major financial or other type of hardship.


To discuss your individual circumstances, please contact us to book a consultation.

Next: No Fault Divorce


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