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How long can I expect a civil partnership dissolution to take?

Civil partnership dissolution order is effectively the dissolution of a civil partnership. This can take varying amounts of time, depending on its level of complexity.

The time it can take for a civil partnership dissolution can depend on how easily you and your partner can reach an agreement on various issues and how busy the court systems are. Generally, we say that the dissolution of a civil partnership takes around four to six months but can take much longer.

Civil partnership dissolution does not usually take place until all the finances have been agreed. This is where the arguments can stretch out for a significant amount of time, lengthening the process, if you both cannot reach an agreement. This is especially the case if either or both individuals have a significant amount of wealth and assets.

Once the respondent has been served with the petition (this can be done by process servers if they refuse) then the conditional order – also known as the decree nisi – can be applied for. If the grounds of the petition are accepted the conditional order will then be pronounced in court. The court will then make an order in relation to finances and once this is agreed the final order – also known as the decree absolute – will be applied for. It is when the final order is finalised that the civil partnership is dissolved. The final order has to be applied for at least 6 weeks and 1 day after the conditional order is pronounced but this can take much longer if there is a complex financial settlement, for example if you are a high net worth individual with pension funds and investments spread out across the world.

It is possible to use a process called arbitration to settle the financial claims of your civil partnership. Arbitration essentially means that you are usually able to complete the process much quicker than if you used the public court system and, unlike public courts, arbitration can completely exclude the public and the media if you want to keep your case totally private.


Contact us to see how we can help you with your civil partnership dissolution

For more information on your civil partnership dissolution options call our team on 0845 862 5001 or email

We offer a nationwide service. We have client meeting office facilities available, in order to have face-to-face client meetings / conferences as and when required in:

Leeds Office: Princes Exchange, Princes Square, Leeds, LS1 4HY

Wakefield Office: Market Walk, Wakefield, WF1 1QR

Halifax Office: Old Lane, Halifax, HX3 5WP

Huddersfield Office: Northumberland Street Huddersfield, HD1 1RL

Coventry Office: Warwick Road, Coventry, CV1 2DY

Canary Wharf Office: 25 Canada Square, Canary Wharf, London, E14 5LB

Please contact us for more details.

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